OK, What If They Suck?

As I write this, Cliff Goldmacher is beginning to mix the four songs we recorded via Nashville Studio Live this week. The next phase of this endeavor of mine is about to get under way. It is, without question, going to be a path lined with frustration, confusion, wasted effort and a Super Sized helping of tilting at windmills.

The path may also be strewn with negativity, but I don’t care about that.

Music is one of my life’s great passions. It is, for me, not just background noise but more the soundtrack that has guided my steps along my journey. The lengths to which I have gone, figuratively and literally, to enjoy it are probably outrageous to some, but “if there were no music, I would not get through…”*

Of course, taking music so seriously and embracing the work of respected songwriters, some of whom are legendary, doesn’t mean that one can actually do that well himself. I sure as heck know that Michael Jordan was the greatest basketball player ever. Let’s just say I was not.

When we conferenced via Skype after the band finished its work yesterday, I told the guys that we’d let the world decide whether the songs we tracked were any good or not, but that I knew the performances would be exceptional. They are. The gift that Cliff, George, Barry, Dave, Nick, Kevin and Tim have given to me with their respective skills and talents is one I won’t even try to diminish with words. They took what I made up in my own head and they made it beautiful. How can you possibly thank someone sufficiently for that?

Music is subjective. It is art, not science. There are plenty of people who don’t get what the big deal is about Bruce Springsteen, or can’t get past Bob Dylan’s voice. On the other hand, there are legions of fans for bands like Dave Matthews, Phish and The Grateful Dead, none of whom I would go/have gone to see if they played a free concert in my backyard.

It doesn’t matter so much what is “good” and what is not. It is very difficult, if not impossible, to wrestle that definition in to some sort of consensus. What we’re left with most often is what we like. If enough of us like something, it will last.

So, bring it on, world. Take your best shot. I won’t say it isn’t going to sting along the way, but I will take the punches and keep right on moving.

I hope you like my songs.

* Shawn Colvin, “I Don’t Know Why”