“I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anyone?”
The classic quote from Stephen King that ends his film Stand By Me sums up childhood friendship from an adult perspective. The pause after, “Jesus,” where he realizes it’s not just him. We all grow older with people coming in and out of our lives, but there is a special bond with those childhood friends that cannot be matched.
On his new single “Old Friends,” Ben Rector takes a look back at those friends and the impact they have made in his life. After the success of ‘Brand New,’ and the whirlwind tour that followed it, Rector realized he had been focused solely on going forward. When he returned to write his upcoming album ‘Magic,’ he decided it was time to take a look back.
It was a phone call with his mom that sparked the song. Speaking with Billboard, Rector said “I sat down to write and was immediately flooded with memories from growing up. It struck me how powerful that feeling was, that I missed both the people I grew up with and the naivety of that time more than I realized.”
The momentum Rector built with ‘Brand New’ won’t be slowing down with “Old Friends.” The song is tailor made for him as he is at his best when reflecting on personal moments in life. There is just something about his voice in this song that is hypnotic, and the song-writing will have you reminiscing about your own adolescence.
“I can still find Wiley’s house
Riding on my bike with eyes closed
I can name every girl that he took out
And from my memory, dial his house phone”
Rector has always been great at blending pop, rock, and folk music and he puts all those skills to use on “Old Friends.” The piano is there, of course, but Ben has a new instrument in his back pocket on this song. A bicycle bell rings periodically throughout the song no doubt as a subtle reminder of our youth.
Ben Rector will release his seventh album ‘Magic’ on June 22nd. You can check out his new single at the link below and maybe afterwards call up one of those friends from when your were twelve.