Despite our most white-knuckle efforts to steer the boat of our most precious hopes into clear water, we often find ourselves crashing head-on into a rocky shore. We wind up dazed and disoriented and wonder, “How did I get here? And how do I get back home to a place of familiarity and comfort?” 

Blending roots in traditional country, rock, pop and folk, Toward Home, the first full-length album from California singer-songwriter, Ellie Zwart, gives intimate voice to this most-human journey through loss, betrayal, disappointment and the subsequent self-doubt that comes from experiencing life’s soul-jarring events. 

An unforeseen road led Ellie to becoming a songwriter. “After living the first half of my life identifying as a singer that interpreted others’ music, my life finally shook me up enough that I felt compelled beyond my inhibitions to write my own songs. Motherhood, and more specifically, living through the loss of my first daughter at her birth, made me brave in a way I hadn’t been before. Songwriting was healing—my inner voice coaxing me forward. It’s my hope that listeners connect this music to their own experience, and through that connection, feel a validation of their own reality and emotions.” 

Toward Home was created in collaboration with acclaimed producer, Matt Patrick, at The Library Recording Studio in Minneapolis. “If you enjoy this music, it has so much to do with Matt’s skillful guidance and realization of these songs. I am profoundly lucky to have his foundational influence on this project. Matt brought these songs into full being.” 

As much as Toward Home is a collection of songs expressing the grief of loss, it is equally music that embodies the gifts of grief—resilience, deeper compassion for self and others, and renewed hope emerging from seeming darkness. These gifts stand us back up, dust us off and put us on a path toward a new, wiser home within.