The Story Behind My New Song, “When I’m Gone”

when I'm gone hailey gardiner new song folk music

Thank you so much to everyone who has streamed and downloaded “When I’m Gone” and watched the music video!

If you haven’t heard it yet, you can listen to “When I’m Gone” on Spotify, iTunes/Apple Music, Amazon, or Google Play!

What a fun song this was to create. I wanted to tell you a little bit about my writing process and the story behind this song.

I first came up with the guitar riff a couple of years ago while messing around one day with my ukulele capo on the second fret.

The riff reminded of one of my FAVORITE BANDS OF ALL TIME – The Civil Wars (may they rest in peace), and their gothic folk, Americana sound.

I would play the guitar riff over and over, humming the melody and trying to come up with lyrics, but too afraid that I would write something cheesy that didn’t have the depth and a little bit of darkness that characterized The Civil Wars’ music.

So I put it off!

I let the song sit for a couple of years until my husband encouraged me to just try to write lyrics for it and not be afraid!

I had a few ideas that I’d sing over and over. Something about “write it on my gravestone” and “will you still love me when I’m gone?” stuck with me, so I knew I wanted those ideas in there.

Finally I sat down to write the song, and the story and lyrics just flowed out. I tried not to think about them too hard and just write what came into my mind.

It felt good to finally have a story to go along with the music I’d been playing for so long!

Once I got in the studio, I knew I wanted this song to have that timeless, haunting sound that old folk songs do, so I had my friend Ryan Shupe come play violin and banjo on the track!

My hope is that this song feels timeless and ageless- like it could be an old traditional folk song written two hundred years ago.

One that would have been sung around the campfire back in the day!

Thank you for supporting me in everything that I do! I’m so grateful that I get to share this song with you and hope that you enjoy listening to it often!