Some Good and a Bit of Bad

I come to you all today bringing news and an apology.

Let’s go with the apology first:

I’m sorry I haven’t blogged in two months. It’s pretty sad and I don’t really have an excuse at all. I think I’ve lost my tiny readership at this point, but, I’m going to resume updating regularly. Also, for those of you interested in the progress of my record this will be the place to get sneak peaks of new tracks and to hear about the recording process.

Now for the bad news:

Last night my band (You Were Never a Locomotive) played a show. We joked during the set that it was our farewell tour…and, well, it was. After the show we had a talk and decided that the band was no longer a priority for any of us. Mark and Mike didn’t live in Fredericksburg anymore, we were having a hard time practicing and writing, and it was time to go our separate ways. I had a lot of fun with those guys, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever be in a band again. But, I’m glad You Were Never a Locomotive happened. Thanks, guys.

Now for some good news:

Several things. First off, after many failed attempts, I have finally found my preferred method to record this record I keep referring to. I originally tried to do things this way, but I was drinking too much and I couldn’t seem to get a good performance. So, after recording a one-off cover song for a friend I switched it up. I went from recording things individually (starting with acoustic gtr, moving then to vocals, then fleshing out the rest of the song), to recording the vocals and guitars live and tracking the meat of the song separately, later. I thought I would get a more emotional performance, and I did, but it just didn’t sound as good and I felt crippled from a mixing standpoint.

Here is an example of the old method (that turned out well): Until I can find a good hosting site, click here.

I got frustrated and all but stopped recording the album. One day I got a stroke of inspiration and scrapped everything I had done so far (skeletal tracks for around 6 or 8 songs) to start over. I began recording Little Knives again, acoustic guitars first, and got the sound I’d wanted all along. This had always been the way I did things in the past and I am so glad it is working again. I figured I would post an unfinished version of the song just to give everyone a little taste of what things may sound like in the future.

Little Knives (No Drums): Until I can find a good hosting site, click here.

The last bit of news (and arguably the most exciting) is that, within a week or so, I will be releasing recordings to the public for the first time since 2005! The release comes in the form of an EP entitled From Weedon Manor. It was recorded live at one of Adam Bray’s revered house shows in September of 2008. It includes 6 tracks and beautiful artwork from the hands of Whitney Roberts over at Green-Eyed Muse. It will be available on iTunes and but, for the next month or so, exclusively in physical CD format. This project is my thank you to everyone that stuck with me over the years. I am moving forward now, you can rest assured. There are two tracks streaming at my myspace page as of last night. Listen to them and enjoy, please! The EP will be $5, if you want one just send me an email at or give me a call at (540)287-6685. Or you could come to a show. Thanks!

Tracklist and Artwork:

From Weedon Manor

From Weedon Manor

Nose in Book (of the now-defunct You Were Never a Locomotive)
Gospel (The National cover)
A Lover’s Lie
The Clearing
Brilliant Moon


Filed under General Blog, Music/Recording, Sounds


Untitled New Song

My first memory

Was the song that saved me

From the depths of my sorrow.

On a hospital bed,

When the nurses come for me,

She will be singing softly.

Take me love, hide me in the other room

I will wait for you

You are strong, I know:

I’ve been shattered by your blows.

But you left me breathing.

As I gasp for air,

I still see you standing there.

I can see your skin now is cracking.

Take my hand, hide me in the other room.

I will wait, I will wait.

Take my hand, hide me in the other room.

You are brave, you are brave.

And maybe, God, in His mercy,

Will let us live again

Maybe, God, in His mercy,

Will put us back together

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Robin’s Egg Blue

“Robin’s Egg Blue”

echos of truth

louder, I swear it, than at origin:

cascading about your cold corners,

kicking up shit and snowballing

down that slippery idscape

– perimeter ablaze in Stephen Hawking’s wheelchair –

as ridiculous as the reality they will confront.

you will speak words that were never yours,

but hear them as your own.

you will fight the will of devils, honest,

made by smoke and mirrors to look like angels:

robin’s egg blue eyes,

deceptors in white robes –


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Marking Time

a poem written on the drive back from Holden Beach today:

Marking Time

There is a strange sadness, even when leaving

A shore you didn’t long to see.

When you arrive home, the arms of pure love

Embrace you, the seraph-tongues bleed

Blessings onto your slow moves.

Marking time, showing not half a mustard seed,

Down sad stairwells with spiral stairs.

God is not pleased, my blind Jonah,

Lest you cast out your lover Comfort, and

Slowdive down to the sea depths,

Where you will be weightless.

Your heart will beat slower at first,

Slower, slower, then faster

It will burst.

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Minor Key

‘Minor Key’ is the title. I thought I’d post the lyrics before I go read and shake the morning off. I’ve got to be in peak mental condition for recording later.

Paperback novels that we never read

On a nightstand, by an unmade bed

Thousands of pages, the stories we know

Could be ours, could be ours

Find me, my love

And bring to me an ancient song

A broken and tangled oak tree

Rooted in the minor key

You were scared, but so was I

Don’t look back

I buried a rose, at your feet, in the snow

We are gypsies, we are traveling home

The words of the ancients, the Tempest, the Truth

We both know, we both know

Find me, my love

And bring to me an ancient song

A broken and tangled oak tree

Rooted in the minor key

Find me, my love

And bring to me an ancient song

The shy wind blows and I run

We both knew this day would come


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Most of you probably thought I gave up…

Well, I didn’t really. I’m going to be honest, life has been really hard the past few weeks. I felt indulgant and selfish writing about it here, though I have been writing. I’ve caused some hurt that I wish I could take back and I’ve been hurt myself. I felt writing about it here would only amplify the impact of an already-ever-present situation. So, I kept quiet. There was enough pain and I didn’t want to give it new life. But, I’m trying to put this all behind me and move past it. I’m 99.9% over the anger and, while the pain will linger for a very long time, I’m having good days here and there in spite of that. I have a lot of fears. I’m afraid of nothing coming to fruition on account of all this pain. At least one of the parties should get what they want, what they need, even if the other must suffer. There is meaning, this part is about finding it. I am trying everything I can to do just that.

I started reading again, a book by an author that has brought me much before. Those of you who know me well will know that I find the Christian art culture to be very lacking, however, he is a Christian author and I enjoy his work. Donald Miller. Wrote a great book and it changed my life before – the last time I felt like this. This time its Searching For God Knows What. I think its unrealistic to hope for the life-changing, but I think it will be good for me.

As for the recording, we’re getting there. Slowly. I’ve got acoustic tracks for five of just under twenty songs. So I guess you could say I’m just over 25% done with this phase. It will be interesting to complete this part. Some songs will fly together and some I will labor over. Its all very exciting.

Now that I’ve finished my cup of tea, I need to find something else to do. I woke up at 7:30 on my day off after going sake drinking last night. What is wrong with me?

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Recording: Day 1

As I type, I’m enjoying a hot cup of chamomile tea. The past couple days have been very revealing for me; I’ve come to many conclusions about the past, the present, and the future. My mind feels clear and my path is one of hope and lightness (although not free of sorrow). This comes after a lot of time dedicated to isolated thought and slightly less time dedicated to meaningful conversation. People, surprisingly, have been coming through for me in a big way, as of late. I’m recapturing the spirit that I’ve had in months past, the spirit that brought me peace and, in turn, love. It fees good. I’ve been trying to pray again, trying to reconnect with the parts of my being that have always led me to water. Thinking of church. I may start going again, in some form. It feels like a tragedy that I’ve become so estranged from the pushing and pulling that have brought me to this point and shaped my heart. If I can find the feeling that got me here, I can figure out what to do next. I know it.

As far as the recording goes, I started out small. But, it’s official – I have begun recording LP1 (as I will call it until I come up with a title). I set up mics and recorded the acoustic guitar to Little Knives. I got the sound I wanted and the take I wanted with only a little effort, which was very relieving. Using the same setup I should be able to record acoustic tracks for the rest of the record fairly quickly. The best part was marking off the box on my whiteboard and seeing it for myself – a start. I’m excited to continue working this week.

Goodnight, friends.


Filed under General Blog, Music/Recording

I Wanted To See Wild Flowers

Here is the aforementioned second part:

I wanted to see wild flowers,

Softly broken by the quiet steps of strangers.

Weeping, heads high somehow,

In a desperate exaltation of the pain

That bred their staggering-drunk-heroic growth.

The winter months are coming now,

So I will have them delivered;

And they will surround me like in a Japan Garden Dream

You had one morning black, before you knew me.

We, like love, may be born in the heart,

But we cannot stay there.

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There Are No Wild Flowers

An older poem brought over from blogspot:

There are no wild flowers, just undiscovered –

Waiting to be tread around by the soft steps

Of adventurers:

Botanists with a lust for the lost ones

And hats to keep the sun from their eyes,

Still allow you to bathe in it.

These are I, your suitors.

And I, I would take you with me if you would not die.

Tonight I wrote one to follow this, the first time I’ve ever really written a ‘sequel’ (if that’s what you would call it…)

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The Occasional Poet

writes the occasional poem:

the trapped blacked-out feeling

like a giant pit in a giant stomach

when I don’t know your thoughts,

your heart,

is enough to make a giant tree-

trunked legs, bear-faced, former lover

into a hospital [sicker than Africa] –

with grief


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