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The Dark Road Diary: Part 23

Wherein I wander the roads of the Heintzman grand .


Not Every Dark Road Is Outside Your Door or How I Got Used To Not Knowing.

Part of the interior landscape of the Heintzman grand piano, snapped while working on a track for the new NOGM recording.

Not every dark road is outside your door. 

Years of chasing songs through an entirely interior landscape has taught me that.  It’s a deal at the crossroads every time, and every song feels like it is the last thing I’ll ever write.  

Every song begins with what you can see, what you are sure of, and then inevitably slips into the darkness of what you don’t know. The fringe benefit of this kind of contract—one that you willingly enter into over and over— is that you get used to being in the condition of not knowing, used to not being so sure about everything. But it can also clarify and fortify what you do know. And you’re not writing fiction, so you can’t just make shit up and have it stand in for something like the truth…the ‘truth’ here being the actual road, you see. 

You stray from the road, you stray from the truth.  

Now, you might say that there is something to be gained by straying from the road, and you might be right, but that’s not the deal I made.  You stray from the truth and you are, by definition, lying.  And what’s to be gained by lying?  Usually, it’s power.  Sometimes it’s self-preservation. Sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference.

So, you strike the deal, stick to the road and not every song is useful, not every song is a gem, but every covenant is kept and that is saying something.  The promise to keep going, to keep looking, though you don’t know what you’ll see, if you’ll see, or where you might end up, and all for no guarantee of any return on the investment…that’s a skill that will serve you.  In the light and in the dark.

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