― Walt WhitmanWalt Whitman taught me in a cerebral way, Robert Frost in a pragmatic one, that fate was only a matter of the direction you set your feet on. In this way your present is your future; the street corner you turn down is your fate. In Star Wars, Yoda says very much the same thing: “Do, or do not, there is no try.”
A contact at the Arts and Crafts label instructed this way: “Play a hundred shows, get a thousand fans.” Recently, talking to my partner Wendy, I, in a fit of waning confidence remarked that I didn’t know how to move forward. She quickly interrupted me to remind that, “of course you know how to move forward; you’re doing it right now.”
This business of making art and waiting for an audience is less about waiting and more about making opportunities, moments, for others to see what you see in what you do.
In one recent submission I told the faceless committee that, “I have a voice, something to add to the Canadian music landscape; I need a little help to take the next steps.” When I wrote, I believed it.
What I was really asking for is a shortcut. The irony of that call to the stars for a route other than the one in front of me is that I’m choosing the path all along. There are no stars hanging in space to guide my journey. There are only stars. And journeys. And rights, and lefts, and straight aheads.
I’m packing up my guitar. See you soon.
May our paths, and songs, cross.
“Whatever you’ve been carrying on your back, lay it down here; and walk miles”