Daily Archives: September 7, 2003

Music and me (again)

For so many years my life has been defined by the Music I’ve wanted to create. Each time I get disgusted, and lay down the guitar (or bass or piano or whatever primary chording instrument I’m using at the time), it’s only a matter of time before something draws me back into that world – a need to express, melodically or harmonically, a certain sense of place and time. Many of my own bouts of indecision, self-doubt and uncertainty can be traced directly to the level of frustration I’m experiencing Musically. Because my primary influence in terms of creative units is based on the Beatles, I am constantly looking for collaborators – and while I have at rare intervals encountered souls who seemed “attuned” to where I was coming from (at the time), usually I end up alone, in the home studio, laying down tracks and attempting to fill in the gaps myself. One time when I was talking to someone about forming a band, and played them some of my tapes, they asked, “well, you seem to have it all together … what do you need me for?” I said nothing, but thought hard at that person — have you ever heard of playing live? And sometimes, when all you have is your own ideas, your own harmonic limitations, you end up simply imitating yourself. Instead of finding new chords and melodies, you end up playing every song you’ve ever written over and over again – and coming up with nothing new, just cannabalizing your own repertoire. Yet at this point in my life I don’t want to tour, or drive an hour to rehearsals, or hang out at bars till three a.m. or have someone crash at my house, high or crazy or both. I feel like Robert Hunter, sometimes, looking for Jerry Garcia. Or Pete Sinfield, looking for Robert Fripp. I’ll admit, I’m not looking all that hard. I’ve gotten to a point where it makes more sense to not look. Because looking always ends up with me thinking I’ve found something, and then it turns out to be so temporary. So many of the models I look to started out so much younger as collaborators, and grew into it as they themselves matured as humans. And besides, the Music industry environment today is not looking to nurture and encourage growth. So there it is. The solution is to just keep on doing what I’m doing. Unless, of course, there is someone out there who wants to collaborate 🙂

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Mightier Than the Sword

My pen and paper ‘gainst your sword and shield
We both draw blood on the same battlefield
It’s a war of ideas, and some of them proud
None of them dare speak their motives out loud

My own revolution turned out to be small
And sometimes, I wonder on the sense of it all
It’s a trial and burden, this conscience of mine
It keeps me from thinking everything is just fine

Some old friends surrendered themselves to the void
Got themselves mortgaged and gainful employed
It’s a non-ending struggle, to have and to hold
And the graveyards are filled with the wild and the bold

Some fought for their country, and some fought against
the barbed wire that keeps us on this side of the fence
It’s a constant reminder that what makes us sane
Is the same thing that drives us to lash out in pain

My own revolution is smaller, it seems
It keeps me from dying, and keeps me in dreams
It’s a lifelong ambition, to strike with a chord
To the heart of the matter with ink, not a sword.

07 SEP 2003

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Nothing of the Fall

Spring doesn’t know summer;
it’s just risen from the dead.
After all that time in winter,
it would rather play instead.

Spring doesn’t know summer,
but it gets there anyway:
every stormy April morning
leads to afternoon in May.

But summer knows the autumn –
it can feel it in the breeze;
and it dreads that first September,
when the chill attacks the knees.

Summer holds off autumn
for as long as it can bear,
pretending that its green-leaved glory
won’t end up cold and bare.

‘Cause the autumn won’t remember
how it laughed in early spring,
or the newness of the meadow
that gives birth to everything.

No, the autumn looks back longing
at the lessons summer learned,
thinking of the coming winter
as its green begins to turn.

Now, I am in mid-summer
and I sense the changing tide;
watching all my growth go amber,
but still holding spring inside.

When I come to November,
I hope I can still recall
the way the world looked in April
when I knew nothing of fall.

07 SEP 2003

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