Robbie Mortimer's fallen in love with music again.
The Orange-based musician last week dropped the first single, Mountains and the Sea, off his yet-to-be released album, but six months ago he wasn't sure where he'd be with his music.
The COVID-19 situation wiped out all of his gigs, which equated to about 90 per cent of his income.
But the time away from the stage enabled him to pick up a pen and his guitar and write music, which he says he's done every day.
Where he'd originally planned to go on tour, Mr Mortimer now had the chance to again produce more music at home and, while he admits his hand was forced a bit given the lockdown, the time in the studio enabled him to again find what he loved most about music.
"I learned so much ... not just about music, by as a person. I lost a lot, but I still had my guitar," he said.
"Getting in and recording straight away helped me get my head around not being able to tour. I'm happy with music being we've been able to develop.
I've grown as a song writer and I think I have a better understanding about music now.Musician Robbie Mortimer
"I've grown as a song writer and I think I have a better understanding about music now."
Mr Mortimer drew inspiration for his new song - produced at the Dotted Eight Studio in Orange - from a story about two people who wanted to be together, but weren't compatible and would remain apart, like the mountains and the sea. He said the track had a "edgy, poppy sound".
The second song will be released on the first day of summer, but the ultimate goal was to go on tour, Mr Mortimer said.
"The gigs have slowly started to pick back up but I hope to step away from pubs and get into the ticketed stuff," he added.
"I'm optimistic about it this year (in 2021)."
He said he was overwhelmed by the support of the Orange community in the days after the release and says given the power of social media and the stretch platforms like Spotify and Apple Music boast it would be possible to remain in the bush and still have a successful music career.
"I love the community of Orange. I've been blessed, a lot of people have given me a shot, streamed my music," he added.
"I have no plans of leaving unless it's to tour. There's such great resources here and the community spirit here; people have backed me and that means a lot.
"I'm not forgetting where I've come from. I never want to do that."
Mr Mortimer's new single, Mountains and the Sea, is available to stream now on Spotify and Apple Music.
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