just had a beautiful email from a friend in California about the new album. I didn’t know that this guy knew Eric Roche, but it turns out he was a big fan, and was deeply saddened by Eric’s death. Likewise he had no idea that I knew Eric or would have been inspired to write a tune for him.
His email spells out his own loss, and the feeling of something missing at NAMM this year with Eric (formerly an ever-present figure on the Avalon guitars stand) no longer being there. ‘Deeper Still’, it seems, says something that he was feeling as well as what I was feeling, and I’m once again reminded that this music lark is deeper than all the day to day stuff of marketing CDs and getting gigs and hoping people like it enough to buy it.
It’s emails like this that are the REAL reason for music. They aren’t, to be honest, what I have in mind in the day to day business of being a musician (it’d be easy to pretend that my motives are that lofty, but obviously they aren’t), but they are the reason why music is there. They are about what music gives us, a wordless language to tell stories that we’d never get round to telling with words, or where a particular form of words would alienate some who would otherwise get the message, just not the syntax.
I don’t write music to move people. i write music to tell my own story, and to try and get as deep inside that story as I can. There are certain things within that story – in my case, they are very often deaths, but also environmental, political, social and personal concerns – that can indwell a particular piece of music, and when that comes across, it’s a very special moment. Not everyone who hears that new album is going to get that much from ‘Deeper Still’ – clearly, that doesn’t happen with anything – but to make that kind of connection with someone is a very special thing, and one not to be taken lightly.by