Daniel Caesar is a Toronto singer-songwriter who makes music that defiantly moves against the deluge of synthesized R&B oozing out of this city. His focus on clean harmonies, introspective lyrics, and strong piano and guitar lines gives the music a distinct levity, situating it somewhere between the incandescent soul of Bilal and the wholesome balladry of John Mayer. "Won't Live Here," Caesar's first new song since October's Pilgrim's Paradise EP, finds him back at the piano sorting through crowded thoughts in a crowded room: Baby, put a bullet in me, lord knows I'm no good / I'm a man with good intentions, just misunderstood. The chatter and applause at the top of the track isn't just a cute flourish: Caesar's playing his first concert in April.
"'Won’t Live Here'" is about me trying to be the man my woman needs me to be," he writes in an e-mail to The FADER. "I’m not perfect and the fact that I never will be troubles me. Over time it's become something of a cruel ironic joke and I’m the butt of it: sometimes you’re the transgressor and other times you’re the victim. Now every time I hear the song I feel pain. I’m working on using it as fuel for my advancement."
Stream "Won't Live Here" below and click here to get tickets for Daniel Caesar at The Mod Club Theatre on April 15 with special guest Charlotte Day Wilson.