Time quickly trickles through the start of yet another “NEW” year.
February and I am barely learning to live in 2014. March has her hand already grabbing at the handle and I feel that my life is slipping away from me with no one / nothing stopping it. My time, or at least what I would deem “MINE”, is arranged and scheduled up till the last minute of day light (for better or worse). I find little time to do anything but make music, record music, listen to music, feed myself, feed my boy, feed my lover, and do it all again the next day. It is an intense, or at least has been since the New Year, way to exist. I find it exhausting / invigorating / and wonderful. I feel to be the most fortunate human being. I am able to eat, to sing, to love, to live and to exist in a beautiful and wildly “conducive to creativeness” environment. And though my days are filled with much, MUCH busyness I still am grateful for it all.
In this already incredibly eventful year I have made the mighty leap to try something that I had only dreamed about in years gone by. My heart beats quicker every time that I find myself gripping the edge of a cliff, scaling and scurrying up its magnificent face. The summer months are filled with such rushes and activities. But the winter!? Oh, what of the winter!? I had heard whispers from local climbers of an activity that some might deem “reckless” or dare I say “negligent”, a little thing they call ICE CLIMBING. My good friend / comrade / confidant invited me to go with him and his brother up Bridal Veil Falls to indulge in this breakneck activity, and I wasn’t about to turn it down.
“ABSOLUTELY!” I cried out when he called me early that Monday morning. “Ok, we are leaving at 7am, bring a warm pair of pants, thick socks, and a very heavy pair of gloves.” He announced with vigor. My heart leapt from my chest as I hung up the phone. Was I really doing this? Was I prepared to throw an axe into the side of a mountain of ice and scale its icy mask? Well, prepared or not, I was going. The morning came and I reached for my alarm. 5:40am. Time to wake. I made coffee and gathered my things. As I drove to Eli’s house my mind was moving at a million miles an hour, ever contemplating the risk, the wildness, the adventure! We made small talk from his house to the base of the climb. After hiking up to the where the climbs would begin I felt chills run up and down my spine. I was instructed to put “crampons” on my boots and get ready with my harness and axes. I did as was instructed and place myself at the bottom of what appeared to be the angriest slab of ice I had come into contact with. “Ok, climb on partner!” Eli said through his undeniably charming smile. I dug the axe into the ice, and with alarming sturdiness it held my weight. Little by little I made my way to the top of the mountain. I reached the top just as my arms were about to give up the ghost of muscular life. I was safely let down to the bottom before repeating the process a mere 25 minutes later, each time letting go of the harbored fears that I had held onto since hearing of this seemingly dangerous hobby. By the time we were hiking down to take refuge in our vehicles I had grown quite fond if this “ice climbing” and made a promise to return to the icy cliffs as soon as was possible. I had taken on the fear of an unknown CREATURE and beat it within an inch of its life. AHOY!
In other news. I have recently been holed up inside of Willamette MTN, setting up and tearing down microphones, guitar amps, drum sets and pushing keys to record the sounds of some mighty musicians. The most recent recordings have been of my good drumming friend (new to be father) Timmy The Teeth. We decided to do the record together and started the very next day. It was a whirlwind of singing, drumming and recording over the course of 6 days before we finished it. I am ever so grateful that he would trust me to be the man behind the board. As we put the finishing touches on Timmy’s record we were all the while getting ready for our (The Coyote Howlers and I) show in Provo at the much loved / respected Velour Live Music Gallery. It seemed that it was one thing after the other and the show went on without a hitch. We sang from the top of our lungs, playing each part with vigor and intrigue. I am AMAZED at the feeling that a guitar or a microphone can give a man. As we finished our show and headed to the back room of VELOUR the crowd cheered on, asking for one more song. I headed back out and played a song that I have never sang for anyone but my loneliness, after which Evan and I sang George Jones’ “Choices” while asking Timmy and his lady with child to stand in the middle of the audience. The crowd formed a circle around them and we sang our last number of the evening. It was a moving moment for me, personally. My care for Timmy and the rest of the boys runs deep within me and I am a fortunate man to know such beautiful human beings.
The Blinking Lights at Willamette MTN
Assistant Engineer Oliver Fred
D7 during “Timmy The Teeth” Recordings
Timmy The Teeth
My days are running few before my departure to the unknown (unknown to me) lands of Australia. Evan and I are to join Neil Finn on his Australian tour starting March 3rd. The adventures will surely become another large chapter in my life as a singing, traveling merry man and I will do my damndest to keep a well-documented journal of my whereabouts and adventures. Following the Australian tour we are flying to Los Angeles to start a US tour that will run through April and into May. My mind is acclimating to the idea of leaving my boy and my lover, my home and my animals to travel and journey to places I have never been. I am torn and intrigued at the thought of leaving again. My heart belongs here, but my heart belongs there. Is it possible to possess a heart that belongs nowhere and everywhere all the while? If it is, then I am burdened / blessed with it (such a thing, OH, such a thing). I have a head full of hope and a mouth full of song. I am to journey to the end of my world, and with a joyful sound I will.