How do you make love stay? That's the question at the heart of "Pull Me," a new song from Anchorage, Alaska's The Modern Savage. Singer Jenni May Toro told me in an email that this song came to her in the wake of her divorce. "As I navigated the meaning of love in this transformative moment, I leaned on the loved ones around me for guidance and support," she writes. "Asking the question to my community gave me hope and developed into a deeply meaningful spiderweb of human connection."
The responses she received often reflected what was on the minds of those asked. Sometimes the answer was personal; other times, it was political. "More than ever, our nation is struggling to pull together," Jenni May Toro says. "There's an aura of division and fear of the future. When these threads of connectivity are exposed, empathy happens, love happens."
You can see in this video for "Pull Me" that answers varied widely, from "Greet love with a kiss," "Compassion and patience" and "Show love a good time" to "Keep dreaming" and "Who knows?"
The question "How do you make love stay?" is asked in the Tom Robbins novel Still Life With Woodpecker, which was the spark for Jenni May Toro. "I'm a longtime fan of his work and it planted a seed to explore the question," she writes. "I wrote him a letter from the studio while we were recording the album. He hasn't responded yet..."
By the way, if you have an answer of your own that you'd love to share, you can post it to your social media with the hashtag #howtomakelovestay.
The second album from The Modern Savage, on which "Pull Me" appears, is titled Unwilling Participants and comes out Jan. 27.