Monday, August 18, 2014

In the End

Weird, but I can ‘confess’ things on my blog that I don’t talk about to people in person. Every blog I write gets some readers; always the readers include people from outside the US. That’s a lot of what keeps me posting.
Weird, but I remember once, around 1970, telling a fellow that I wish I could be a musician without having to perform in public. I wanted to record and release albums, but not perform in public. He said, “That’s weird.” Yes, it is, but here I am doing it. Yet, (don’t think I’m ignorant) the thing that allowed me to fulfill my dream, the internet, also is so full of stuff that it doesn’t register near as much as if I had, say, become a hit in my hometown, Amarillo, Texas.
Yet, I know a woman, Judith Nelson, Judith Nelson Clark- Judy Clark as I knew her back in the ‘60s, who was a hit in Amarillo, who almost got a song accepted by none other than Roy Orbison, who had a song (I Just Dropped By to See the Show) recorded my Marcia Ball, and yet who never “made it.” Weird. Oh dear, I just googled her old band, the Last Chance Band, and see that there is a band from Maine with that name, and the first reference to Judy and her Texas bros was from one of my blogs. Weird.
Don’t think I don’t know that the only reason I have so many sites that carry my name is because the ‘cloud’ is cheap. I carry on because “you can’t win the lottery if you don’t buy a ticket.” My dream, at this point, is that someone, somewhere, someday will discover a song and that that ‘someone’ has connections – maybe a song placement in a TV show or a movie or …
I still dream about finally overcoming my performance anxieties and making a mark in some city, but it’s kinda hard to think it’ll happen. I’m 64. “Will you still need me, will you still feed me …” Why should you? I never stood in your food line. Well, not very often.
If one is autistic or has Asperger Syndrome, or whatever the hell helped me hide, I’d recommend you not to pursue music as a career. But what do you do if you don’t know yourself well enough, and you fall in love with the idea of ‘making it’ in a world that requires more social interaction than you are capable of? Are you simply fucked? Oh no, not necessarily. I wouldn’t trade my musical adventure for the ‘straight life.’ The adventure was very much in my own head, but that doesn’t mean it was wasted time or foolish. I’ve lived a life. Most of my young adventures were tied to work – on the Bering Sea on a fish processing ship, in Chicago and Florida as a race horse groom, to name two big adventures. And there were those young days when I could smoke a joint that would fuel four or more hours of guitar improvisations.
At this point, if I were to come into money, I’d want it to be for my children and my grandson, Forest William. The hardest thing to kick, and it must be kicked, is the desire to “prove myself” and to seek recognition. I’m over the fame thing (kinda), but not the desire for recognition – and there lies the rub. You can’t count on recognition, but you can count on the journey being interesting and rewarding. Mine has been.
When I listen to my son's first big production, 1972 AND YOU, I hear an awful lot of the history of pop. Pop became Forest's thing. I bought him a Taxi subscription the last year of his life. Taxi is a service that posts stuff that's said to be directly from the film/movie/recording companies. So the posts give the description. I'll make up a typical listing:
Needed. A song a la Ricky Nelson about breaking up. Company will buy performance rights so only submit completely orchestrated songs.
Yeah. I tried it and the feedback always said I was off base. Forest got feed back like
         You really nailed it. That's exactly what the description said. 
But he never got anything placed
I'm not bringing this up as directly relating to the song posted below. I'm telling you that he had moments of experience, of the musical life, that are the real deal. He lived a life. When he wanted something he couldn't do (he played bass, drums sometimes, rhythm guitar, vocals, any keyboard) he posted a note on a bulletin board at U of A in Tucson. He did this for saxophone and classical guitar. I need to tell the names of those guys some day, but I can say this - Rick Moe played drums until he went to New York City, and Forest's beautiful wife Jessi sang real good. Yep.
I'll get to work with CD Baby on Forest's album "1972 and You."
For now, here is a song, In the End, I recorded with my late son Forest Arturo Dunn. Forest never had a piano lesson. He was simply gifted. Forest is playing and singing everything that's not me and a Martin. Forest did his thing in no time. This came from his "hitting the woodshed" on so many multi-track recordings.
This song was written in honor of my wife Rosemary; there is no one else like her in this world; one does not need to ask Rosemary, "Are you a Christian?" She is a woman of works, not words.

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