Singer Sara Bareilles was inspired to bring forward the release of her empowering single Armor following the sexual misconduct controversy surrounding the nomination of U.S. Supreme Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh.
In September (18), psychology professor Dr. Christine Blasey Ford stood before a Senate Judiciary Committee and testified that Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted her at a high school party in the 1980s.
Her bravery for speaking out was widely applauded by supporters of the #MeToo and Time's Up movements against inappropriate sexual behaviour, including celebrity activists like Lady Gaga, Alyssa Milano, and Olivia Munn, and listening to Dr. Ford's testimony prompted Sara to drop her feminist anthem Armor months earlier than its planned 2019 launch.
"As (artists), we react and respond to the world around us," the star tells Billboard. "I had this song sitting and ready and waiting to go. I was just feeling so much in that moment and really wanted to reflect that musically. It's the right time for this song to be birthed into the world. I'm really proud of it."
"We weren't going to release anything until next year," she continues, "and I was really moved by the experience of watching the Kavanaugh hearings. This song felt like it wanted to belong to this moment in time."
Despite the allegations against Kavanaugh, members of the Judiciary Committee voted to approve his nomination to the nation's top court after an FBI investigation into the claims found no evidence to suggest the judge was guilty.
Sara reveals Armor had actually started out as a very different song, as she had started developing the lyrics in the wake of Donald Trump's controversial election as U.S. President in 2016.
"The seeds of the song were planted right after the election," she explains. "Originally, it was going in another direction.
"When I talk to my friends and community, I think we all are suffering from this sense that the world feels like it's on fire... There is so much fear and so much mania right now, and that's part of what was informing the birth of this song back in the beginning of the Trump administration.
"As songs do, they change, they evolve, they move into different things. This song then became about my experience as a woman and as an artist and a community member."
The topic is one she fully explores on her upcoming album, also titled Armor, and the message she delivers through her new material is one of coming together to work towards a better future.
"Right now it's time to be activated and galvanised and draw strength from each other - and to fight for what's right," she adds.