The harmonious song “Love Ain’t Free” by Andy Smythe wonders what happened to liberty and free speech through its folky tunes. 

Andy Smythe is a singer and a multi-instrumental powerhouse. The versatile artist writes the songs and brings them to life laying down the guitar, bass, and sax parts himself. He utilizes all of his talents to protest, tackling the financial difficulties young Britons face after Brexit when trying to marry and bring their EU partner to live in the UK.

While the specific issue of post-Brexit marriage regulations might not resonate everywhere, “Love Ain’t Free” speaks to a universal truth: love shouldn’t come with a price tag. Smythe’s powerful lyrics lament the obstacles that make love anything but free, asking frustrated questions like “What ever happened to liberty, free speech, and dignity?” The audacity of imposing a tax on love itself is a theme that transcends borders.

Despite its angry core, the song explodes with a surprisingly upbeat soundscape. This musical protest is fueled not just by anger, but by a vibrant love that refuses to be silenced. Smythe’s vocals lead the charge with a passionate yet graceful delivery, while the music provides a counterpoint of hope. Light, feathery guitar riffs dance alongside a free-spirited saxophone, Beatrice Limonti, who plays in Smythe’s live band, brings a cheerful delight with her skillful fiddle. It’s a musical paradox that perfectly embodies the frustration of young love battling against bureaucratic hurdles.  

“Love Ain’t Free” below is a joyous celebration of love refusing to be extinguished by suppression.