In about a little less than a month, on March 22nd,I’ll be playing a little solo gig with my friends in Finish Ticket, Holychild, and Ghost and The City at The Rickshaw Stop. That feels so strange to think about, because I’ll be playing a lot of Picture Atlantic songs by myself along with some vocal backing by my good friend Paige.
Why it feels strange is because what I’m doing is heading back to square one with a lot of these songs, and sort of revisiting the genesis of my musical journey.
When you spend so much time playing these songs in a full band setting, they become other creatures entirely. The dynamics are different. The sonic space explored is different. If you are the singer you don’t have to worry about the rhythm section as much because it’s being covered by your drummer. If you play guitar, you don’t have to be worried about your bass anymore, because someone else is handling it. You feel protected. You feel like there is a wall around you. You can hide if you make a mistake.
When I first started playing music, there weren’t any other people that I knew, besides myself, that seemed to get excited about the same kinds of music as myself. No one was cheering to Damien Rice with me, or getting stoked on Coldplay. Particularly no one seemed to give a rip about Nick Drake or Interpol. So what was a kid supposed to do? In my case, it was pick up an acoustic guitar and start playing on my own in coffee shops. And boy did I do that. For years, I really devoted a lot of my time to doing things my way and, and having to rely on myself as a sort of one man band of sorts. It was sort of like wandering into the desert by yourself, so to speak. It could get lonely, but it could also be strangely fulfilling. To play this show is like a little time travel session back to exploring the desert.
After all this time of playing the songs as a band production, it’s interesting to really hear these songs again at their barest form. It will be fun to show everyone that start for some of the songs I’ve written, and take a glance at a naked song. When I sit by myself in my room and jam on an idea, all I have is my voice and my guitar. No drums, no bass, no choir of angelic voices (well, ok, we don’t even have that, but you get the picture).
This is exciting, and also feels fresh too. I get to go to square one for a day. Call it a musical vacation if you will.
Hope to see you there,