Keaton Henson and SoKo

Keaton Henson and SoKo

Keaton Henson and SoKoIf Keaton Henson and SoKo were a lit­tle more famous, this year would have been all about their doomed rela­tion­ship and crip­pling breakup in the tabloids every­where. Being rel­a­tively little-known, their very pub­lic dia­log went mostly unnoticed.

Initially, I thought it was some kind of weird indie pub­lic­ity stunt. The whole story seemed too emo­tion­ally charged to be true. People don’t dis­cuss their inner­most feel­ings for each other in front of an audi­ence. Or at least not so openly. But it looks like Keaton Henson and SoKo are doing it for real.

The mes­sages had started two weeks before he pub­lished his debut LP titled ‘Dear…’ on April 4th. SoKo, young French singer-songwriter and actress, was asked to com­pile a mix­tape for a music blog called Yours Truly. At the end of the track­list she put the song ‘You Don’t Know How Lucky You Are’ by Keaton Henson.

After the last chord SoKo added a short record­ing of her talk­ing in a chip­munked voice: “I knew how lucky I was. Good bye now.” If that hadn’t been obvi­ous enough, she also hand-wrote a let­ter to accom­pany the mix­tape, addressed to a cer­tain Kitten Handsome and signed as Yoko. It’s a long farewell to the lover who left her, full of bit­ter sad­ness and thinly-veiled reproach.

Seeing this let­ter, pub­lished for any­one to read, must have been quite a blow to Keaton. But he should have known bet­ter, after hav­ing released many deeply per­sonal songs about his trou­bled rela­tion­ship with SoKo. As a com­menter wrote about ‘You Don’t Know…’: “imag­ine being the girl that hurt keaton hen­son enough for him to write this bril­liant album for her, in ded­i­ca­tion to his love for her.” Yes, that’s a bur­den for sure. Plus, com­ments like that aren’t the light­est read­ing for the girl mentioned.

So, when Henson’s debut got fea­tured on Drowned In Sound, he felt the need to add a note: “sweet­heart, i am so sorry that they can hear these songs. ever yours, Keaton”.

Since then, SoKo has been post­ing almost every video of Keaton on her pub­lic Facebook page, which has around 175k likes. So, it’s safe to say that she had a role in his suc­cess, and not only as his muse. In fact, many fans claim in blog posts and com­ments all over the web, that they dis­cov­ered Henson via a link by SoKo. And along with those links, she never fails to share how she feels about him.

He, on the other hand, hasn’t yet con­firmed the story directly, but did give a few sub­tle clues here and there. In May he, too, cre­ated a mix­tape which fea­tured ‘How Are You’ by SoKo as the last track. Unlike with the rest of the songs, he didn’t give a rea­son other than an enig­matic “Beacuse…”

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Recently, he pub­lished a video for the song ‘Sweetheart, What Have You Done To Us’. Actually, I knew noth­ing about him before, this was the point when I decided to research his back­story a lit­tle bit.

The video is but a huge cliche con­cep­tu­ally, still, it’s extremely effec­tive because of the raw emo­tions that Keaton dis­plays while attempt­ing to lip-sync and fail­ing mis­er­ably. This is either the finest act­ing ever in a music video, or the film­mak­ers unin­ten­tion­ally cap­tured a per­fectly sin­cere moment. My heart voted for the latter.

Perplexed, I started read­ing the com­ments, hop­ing they would help me decide if what I just saw was gen­uine. A few peo­ple sug­gested that it’s about SoKo. Someone pointed out that the line “You were the one who told me not to be so English” implied it’s about a for­eign girl. It’s a vague hint, but a hint at least. Reading through his lyrics, I con­vinced myself that there were more hints like that, and together they added up to a descrip­tion of some­one very much like SoKo.

Finally, here’s what I believe to be a direct answer to ‘Sweetheart…’ The title is ‘Keaton’s Song’. I think she looks just as devastated.

Now, I may be wrong about many details, and my chronol­ogy is prob­a­bly a mess. To be hon­est, I’m not even sure if this isn’t all just SoKo being a cre­ative fan of Keaton, play­ing a clever game to make him more inter­est­ing. But I’d really like it to be for real.

I didn’t mean to gos­sip. I don’t think I did that. I just tried to col­lect what they shared about their pri­vate his­tory, and it’s a lot. And I think it tells a lot. It tells a great story about a chronic intro­vert who baf­fles every­body by step­ping into the lime­light in his dark­est moment, and his estranged lover who firmly keeps that light on him.

What kills me is the feel­ing of help­less­ness. Two sad kids, Keaton Henson and SoKo, writ­ing and singing songs about how much they miss the other, both beg­ging for for­give­ness and a sec­ond chance, yet for some rea­son they can’t do any­thing about it. No mat­ter how tal­ented they are, I don’t really care about their music any­more, I just want them to be together and happy again. (If they ever were…) |

  • runa

    Perplexed, I started read­ing the com­ments, hop­ing they would help me
    decide if what I’d just saw was gen­uine. A few peo­ple sug­gested that
    it’s about SoKo.”

    Damn.. What you describe here is just exactly why and how i came here! I appre­ci­ate your sum­mary of the infor­ma­tion you’ve found about them here on this page. Thank you (:

  • disqus_SQJbpjqSR2

    Hi guys! Last night SoKo made a pub­li­ca­tion on his face­book page, it was like “ask me what­ever you want” and there some guy ask her about her rela­tion­ship with keaton and she answer to him sayin some­thing like “he’s my ex lover, he break my heart so bad and he doesn’t want to stil being friends” or some­thing sim­i­lar Sorry for my bad eng­lish, i need to learn more! Hope you under­stand me :)

  • Jacques Jenkins

    Can i just say, that the album ‘Dear’ was writ­ten long before SoKo even existed in Keatons life. That album, had noth­ing to do with her..

    • Greg Bayney

      How else do you explain SoKo’s let­ter then?