An innocent, beautiful, young girl is introduced against a rustic setting, as her mind begins to wander towards a foreign sound in the distance. The sound is being orchestrated by a man, who begins to lull the young maiden deep into the forest. Our young girl has found and fallen for a blue eyed boy, and his sincere violin, as he strings a strand of pearls around her neck. This is the beginning scene from Los Angeles artist, Shel Bee, and her empowering tale told through her latest single, “Branches.”
Bee executes the first line of the song heavy-heartedly, and instantly I am connected to her words, “I met you in the forest / with the monsters and the demons / My eyes glazed over / I had no recollection of freezing / You reached in my chest / and pulled out my heart.” It is now certain that Bee’s character has fallen deeply in love for the boy in the forest, who is undoubtedly, a wolf in sheep’s clothes.
“Branches” did a wonderful job of depicting a toxic relationship through subtle gestures executed throughout the video. From his gaze, to his grasp, to the literal sense in the lyrics, “You squeezed my worries until they were numb,” each element is key in telling the story. As we reach the chorus, we can feel how strong and engaging Bee’s tone becomes: “You didn’t break me / I was always rooted down / but trying to escape, my branches spread far and out/ I needed you so I could shut off my mind, you needed me so you could feel less unkind.”
Towards the end. the strand of pearls made another imperative appearance, as the distressed beauty rips the necklace off, letting each and every single pearl fall, symbolizing her growth, which is very empowering. Shel Bee showed off her wonderful writing, soft voice and elegant piano playing, through “Branches,” it’s hard not to fall in love with her or her talent.