Originally from South Carolina, where he grew up on an island, Hall was seduced by music at a young age. After recording his first album when he was 16, Hall attended Idyllwild Arts Academy in California, studying classical guitar and discovering yoga and meditation, disciplines of Eastern Mysticism mirrored in his life and his music.
Hall’s unique concoction of folk and roots music has given rise to an ocean of fans spanning the globe. He has performed with Steel Pulse, Ziggy Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Matisyahu, Michael Franti, Nahko &; Medicine for the People, and Xavier Rudd.
“What I Know” rides a roots-flavored reggae melody laced with traces of folk and pop colors, as well as just the tiniest hint of gospel. Opening with syncopated drums and a deliciously compact guitar, the melody reflects expansive tones and a streamlined organic texture full of coruscating vocal hues. There’s a sacred filament of energy palpitating through the music, almost like the projection of a cultural memory, a reshuffling of spirituality. It’s proximate and potent, especially when the vocal harmonies coalesce, reaching past the now into another dimension.
Hall’s hoarse rasp imbues the tune with a declarative charm that’s simply scrumptious. His voice combines the gruffness of Peter Gabriel and the emotional expressiveness of Phil Collins, a kind of sophisticated yawning mistiness full of rasping bumps and gouges of scruffy timbres that are tantalizingly superb.
The lyrics reflect a gorgeous demeanor: elegant simplicity, articulate brevity and spiritual tranquility.
“Spilling out like water / Like the mountain gave a daughter / Surrender never felt so good / I grew it strong like a sacred wood / And now the roots are running deeper / All illusion getting weaker / You see the wisdom it don’t come from reading / It comes from believing / What I know / Is that I don’t know / And now I dance and I sing and I live full / I give it all to the call of the unknown.”
The video is a work of art, summarizing the layered accretion of the power of love, compassion and sublime grace in human relationships. It’s a powerfully moving congregation of images rife with vast implications.
“What I Know” is brilliant. The melody glows with contagious energy and Trevor Hall’s voice provides a sonic sensation that’s enchanting.