Hello all, I just wanted to share something that happened yesterday and my thoughts about it.
Today started out pretty much like any other weekday, I had to get up early and go to my day job (yes us ambitious types still call it that regardless of how much they pay or how old we are) even though I’m not a morning person I trained myself to look forward to everything that’s in store for me throughout the day and of course remembering to be grateful that I am even here to do so. Pretty much a quiet day, didn’t really hear from any of my friends even though I had plenty to say.
I know that most people are unable to talk during the day but I was able to reach out to a select few just to check in and see how they were doing. I know for me (especially what all that’s going on these days) that goes along way to know someone was thinking of me and decided to time out of their day to reach out to me.
This wasn’t the point I was trying to get at but in a roundabout way it’s kind of the same thing. Anyway, I got a notification that another musician was doing a live broadcast. It just so happened to be a musician that I had gotten some tour dates for many moons ago. This was something I discovered early on that I had a knack for. From members of my first band handing me the phone to talk the clubs we wanted to play at to doing my own research into booking shows at not only clubs but anything from Libraries,to Charity events,Colleges you name it. For many people that play music, allow this behind the scenes stuff where you have to “take a step back” (see I told you I’d get to it) and handle the business end of things is absolutely torturous. Not just because it’s not only a thankless job (as I was told by a music executive years ago) but it’s not directly involving actually performing as an artist. However, in order for artists to perform these arrangements must be done and done correctly. For me, I wanted to create my ideal show, keep things moving and be in the thick of it so to speak.
So back to the live broadcast I had lost. This artist’s name is Fremont John. Earlier today he performed a mix of some of his original songs and cover songs. I had asked him to play something by Electric Light Orchestra which lead to perform the song that inspired this entry, “You Got it” performed by the late,great Roy Orbison. Some of you maybe wondering how a request to play ELO (which is what I actually referred to them as) lead to play a song by a completely different artist. Most of us started do know the connection that Jeff Lynne,the founder and songwriter for ELO was also in a rock super group with Roy Orbison called The Traveling Wilburys. Also consisting of two other musical legends that left us too soon, George Harrison and Tom Petty. Turns out that Orbison wrote this song along with Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne (who also produced it) A few years ago, when I was submitting info to BMI about a show I played, I have discovered that Jeff Lynne also wrote songs that Tom Petty recorded. I quickly commented in the chat that I had NEVER heard that played live before. Of course after hearing Fremont (or Monty as his friends call him) play it I looked for a video of Orbison performing it live. Despite my lack of knowledge about who wrote the song or only hearing it only on the album version, I was always moved by it. I was teary eyed as I listened today. I don’t know if it’s the message the song conveys devotion to his true love that is described as not only evoking a powerful force upon him with “One look from you,I drift away” but also outright saying she is one of a kind with words “No one can do the things you do”. Perhaps it is my awareness that although the person singing is no longer living, their essence will forever be. Another this message states is “It’s ok”, no need to worry, I’m here for you. Specifically “Anything you need”. Afterall, doesn’t want to hear that they are loved and special to someone? I’m hoping many of you can relate to the feelings expressed in this song (Especially with Valentine’s Day coming up) That someone feels you are so special that they’ll to “Anything” for you. The lyrics to this song are so powerful yet simplistic at the same. See for your self:
Now back to the whole idea of taking a step back. I’m not sure if this song was intended for Orbison to sing originally or not. It’s obvious that it wasn’t the was meant to be performed by anyone but him. As a guitar player, I noticed the similarity the constant strumming pattern throughout the song and other songs written by Jeff Lynne“The living things”. Which I fully embraced a few hours later when I quickly learned the song. Whatever the case is, this was the right choice of artists for this song to be recorded by. Only that Ghostly vocal tone that resonates with a slight Leslie vibrato accented with each vowel from the mouth of Roy Orbison could do this song justice. So, if it was the latter than “Taking a Step” back was the right thing to do and ultimately made this song what it is and still showcasing the songwriter’s abilities.
So by just the small act of taking time to listen to somebody else perform, coincidentally someone who I had booked shows for (he even remembered which cities) I not only learned more about this song, but I got inspired to learn it and a new song idea came to me(consider yourself warned). Afterall, anyone who creates should constantly be looking for inspiration. And for those of you who play, you know that there’s nothing like the first time you figure out song do you really like. Especially one as moving as this one. So do you see? Everything is connected. If I didn’t take a step back and do some some of the tedious stuff that I already stated most artists avoid or gave my attention to a somewhat random live perform amongst the many broadcasted daily I would not have discover the true awesomeness song and learned to perform it. Just another example of philosophy about how everything is connected. I know lots of people don’t see things that way and they’re too busy their stuff. But, like I just proved taking a step back can really help you move forward.
Thanks again for reading, Be Well