SUN POST WEEKLY
 

The period during which Trevor Hall made his new CD, “Everything Everytime Everywhere” came with plenty of distractions, struggles and change for the 24-year-old artist.
One of the adjustments for this, Hall’s fourth CD, involved getting together with some professional songwriters to try to collaborate on songs. He agreed to give co-writing a try, even though he wasn’t sold on the idea.

“That was a new thing for me,” Hall said in an early August phone interview. “I never really kind of did that whole thing where you meet with writers and you try to write songs together. I always thought it was a little impersonal, just kind of meeting up with somebody and they know nothing about you and you know nothing about them, and let’s just write a song and make a hit. I wasn’t really feeling all that.”
Hall may still hold that skeptical opinion of arranged collaborations. But “Everything Everytime Everywhere” would have had an entirely different album had Hall not gone to Los Angeles for these co-writing blind dates.

It was there he met a producer/songwriter named Jimmy Messer.

“I met up with Jimmy just to do some writing,” Hall said. “And as soon as we kind of got together, it just kind of sparked and I thought ‘Oh man, this is good. I like this.’ So I came back a couple of times and we were writing more and more.”

It dawned on Hall that he had not only found a compatible songwriter, but the person he wanted to produce the new CD.

“He was really into it, Hall said, “and we just kind of went with it.”

“Everything Everytime Everywhere” is still very much Hall’s vision, but Messer’s involvement is very apparent. Half of the CD’s songs are Hall/Messer compositions, and Messer produced, engineered and mixed the CD.

Hall had enough on his plate as it was as the “Everything Everytime Everywhere” project was taking shape.
He was changing managers, his touring band and dealing with issues that went beyond his career.
“I was having a little bit of family trouble,” Hall said. “Then on top of that, within my own, I think, spiritual journey, I was having some struggles. So all of those things were kind of coming down on me kind of hard.”
Hall, with Messer on board, though, plowed into the project. And while Hall said he had “an amazing time” making “Everthing Everytime Everywhere,” it wasn’t a smooth process, and it was a scramble to finish the CD in time for Hall to take a previously planned December/January trip to India.

The trip is worth mentioning because in a sense, the new CD didn’t really feel complete to Hall until he was in India.

“I was with a teacher of mine over there, and we were talking about all of these things, and I asked him, I said ‘I’ve been having lots of struggle holding my stance, I guess my spiritual stance, in all of this kind of chaos in the world,’” Hall recalled. “’What do I do if my environments don’t really support my spiritual life? I asked him this, and I was expecting some big instruction or something I could do. And he just looked at me and he said ‘Everything Everytime, Everywhere.’

“He said that spirit, that whatever you want to call it, God, love, it’s in everything all of the time, everywhere you go,” Hall said. “So that’s all he said, But really if you have that attitude, there’s no need to worry and no need to fear anything. It was interesting for me because I had already recorded the record, but I didn’t know what I was going to name the album. But as soon as he said that, I was like ‘That’s it.’ And I find all of those songs, or the record’s journey, that was the theme the whole time.”

Themes of spirituality are nothing new for Hall, and several songs on “Everything Everytime Everywhere” speak to comfort in the face of difficulties (“All I Ever Know”) and spiritual renewal (“Brand New Day” and “The Mountain”).

Musically, though, there are a few notable shifts. As on his previous releases — a 2006 EP, “The Rascals Have Returned,” a 2008 concert CD, “Alive & On The Road With Chris Steele,” and a 2009 self-titled CD — Hall continues to blend pop and reggae as key musical elements. But he branches out on songs such as “Fire,” a hard-hitting tune with some tasty electric guitar, and especially the meditative yet musically rich ballad, “The Love Wouldn’t Die.”

“The Love Wouldn’t Die,’ is probably the most different kind of style and sound that I’ve ever done, but that’s like my favorite song that I’ve ever written,” he said.

Overall, Hall felt he took a very natural approach to his new material.

“Like if it was a reggae song we were like hey, let’s go all the way reggae,” he said. “And if it’s a rock song, hey let’s go all the way rock and roll and not worry about if it fit together or not. And then at the end of it all, it just fit together.”