When I was 14 we had an exchange student and he played guitar. He was from Belgium and was the only brother I had live with me. I have two half brothers that I love dearly but we never lived together and to say we felt like pawns may be understated.
For Christmas in 1985 my mom bought me a keyboard but it didn’t stick. I wanted to know how to play but took no lessons. I wanted a thing more I guess. I learned snippets of things I figured out by ear. You want the first 23 notes of Axel F? I got you covered. Actual songs. I got squat
My friend Jay Love, yes that’s his real fucking name (lucky bastard), played guitar and during the thanksgiving and Xmas holidays of my junior year, I painstakingly learned the intro to Sunday Bloody Sunday, while he urged me to sing. I was terrible at best, but wanted it. He pushed me to write.
That year a kid killed himself. For the life of me, I can’t remember his name. We ran in parallel groups but weren’t close. It still affected me deeply as he was the first of many “captains of the football team, all class, good looking nothing too lose top of the world” types that would kill himself because all of it was a lie.
We recorded it to a four track and didn’t play it for many, but it showed me how to express myself through music.
Over the next couple of years I slowly fumbled through learning the guitar.
This isn’t about a step by step history of my so called musical progression, but more about why I still write and want a band and want it to be unique and special.
I’m a cheater and a hack when it comes to guitar skill. I know no keys, few scales and less theory.
I know how to make it work though. To make chords that go together. I push myself to create stories and hope the melodies are tolerable. I try to lead a band regardless if I’m the leader. I’m the presser. I’m the one that says “we are playing this show in 3 weeks. Let’s be ready.” I’m also the one that’s hopefully making the band know that they are the glue for the song. My talents aren’t great and without great support and collaboration, my small visions remain tiny.
These days Cary, Court, John and I are searching for the right band name. It’s incredibly hard to encompass everything in a name as those guys have the same story I just told but it’s completely different . They have things they want a name to say and what music means to them, and as hard as the search is, and even if we don’t play the Superdome, the name has to be right.
So we search and we write and it’s fulfilling in ways not many things are.