By Keith Loria
With a musical mix of roots, folk and reggae, singer-songwriter Trevor Hall has toured the world spreading a message of love and tranquility. The artist has traveled to India and Nepal, and the inspiration of those trips can be heard in his songs and seen in the way he lives — living close to the earth and exhibiting the simple qualities of life.
On Friday, March 2, Hall will appear at the Fairfield Theatre Company for what he dubs a “Night in the Village,” where he will share songs, the stories behind the tunes, and rare images and footage from his journeys.
“This is very different than other shows I have done, and this is the first time we are doing this on tour and we’re happy to bring it to Fairfield,” Hall said. “I’m playing solo and I will have a slide projector with me and I will show pictures of people and places that have inspired certain songs. It’s going to be very interactive.”
The village, he explains, represents simple living and the community, and shows that people can be anywhere and live as a villager.
“In today’s world, people and things are so complex. Yes, we can connect with anybody in the world with our phones, but at the same time, we’re very isolated,” Hall said. “The village represents the opposite; it represents community. It represents being a family. Small is beautiful. It’s more of a concept rather than a specific place on the map.”
At the end of his concert, Hall will hold a Q&A session, allowing the audience to ask questions about his music or journeys.
“It’s a show for my fans, so they can learn a little more about me and get deeper into the music and my life,” Hall said. “When we come with a big band, there’s not much time for storytelling, so this will be much more intimate than people expect.”
Hall’s wife is from Darien, so he considers Connecticut to be a second home and he plays in the area a great deal. Additionally, he got involved in the genealogy recently and learned that his ancestors on his mother’s side are all from Fairfield County.
“I visited the graveyard and got to see the places my family settled, so it’s kind of like a full-circle experience for me,” he said. “These are my people.”
During his first decade in music, Hall recorded for established labels such as Geffen and Vanguard, but he found that he wanted to have more control. That’s why for Hall’s newest album, “The Fruitful Darkness,” he decided to leave the labels behind. The album was funded thanks to a Kickstarter campaign, and he’s thrilled with the way his first independent release is going so far.
The album is broken into four parts, with each containing three to five songs, and it’s being spaced out throughout 2018. The hope is that each song will get its proper space and his fans will have enough time to digest each part before moving on to another part. The last part is scheduled to be released this summer.
“The love and support for me was just so overwhelming and beautiful. I love my fans and my villagers,” he said. “This is an album that was built from the ground up as a community, as a village versus being on a label and getting money and your fans and your community knowing nothing about it until you put it out. I’m really grateful for it all.”
Raised on an island in South Carolina, Hall knew early on that music was going to lead him on his journey in life.
“My dad is a drummer and there are pictures of me in my diapers playing drums. Music was just always in my life,” he said. “Our household was full of music all the time, and it was just natural to me. I can’t see life without it. I knew that was my thing and my life.”
He recorded his first album at just 16, and studied classical guitar at Idyllwild Arts Academy in California. It was there that he was introduced to the practices of yoga and meditation, which he said greatly influenced his life and his music. Beyond his intention to spread love and healing through music, Hall also collects donations to support children’s education in India and has regularly donated to charities and relief funds.
“When things are going really well, music creates a space where there’s no performer and no audience, but we are all listening together,” Hall said. “For me, it creates this incredible unifying feeling. It’s this exuberant joy that comes out from my heart. It goes beyond our thoughts and logical minds into something much deeper.”
His songwriting philosophy is to “let the music do what it wants to do” and he doesn’t have any preconceived notions as to what a song needs to be. He just wants it to reach his listeners and impact them in a positive way.
“If someone wants to let loose, I hope my music does that for them, or if someone is having a hard time and needs some healing, I hope the music does that as well,” Hall said. “I don’t want to pigeonhole my music, and I believe the music has a spirit of its own and will do what it needs to do for every individual.”
Hall’s performance at Fairfield Theatre Company’s Warehouse begins at 8 p.m., with doors opening at 7. Tickets are $28 in advance and $32 on the day of the concert. For more information, visit fairfieldtheatre.org.