Wake up call? Hardly.

Have you ever woken up mid-thought?


It’s a strange feeling. I assumed my head actually rested while I slept. But, apparently not even in the land of slumber does my brain take a break.

I awoke as if halfway through a thought about my future and how I’m wasting my life. Not to mention all the other little things that just aren’t right, or that I know I’m doing wrong.

It was a very overwhelming way to wake up and start the day.

I felt almost paralyzed by it. All I could do was lie there for, I don’t know, some twenty minutes, and talk myself logically past that and into a lighter vision of the future.

Now, it isn’t unusual for me to feel overwhelmed with this life and what I am expected to do with it.  Though, that mulling over in my thoughts is generally on my own terms. I’m not used to being bitch-slapped awake with it by surprise.


Now, I did have a purpose when I sat down to write this post. Unfortunately, I became distracted and took a break for a while and now that I return I have to admit I have completely forgotten what that purpose was. I have lost my way. I suppose this blog has unfolded not dissimilar to my life.

I used to be 23 years old and resonate with the Dave Matthews lyrics from Dancing Nancies: “Twenty three and so tired of life.” Now all of a sudden I find myself at 28 and if anything the feelings have grown stronger. Though despite the occasionally depressing lyrics, the tone and overall message of the song is optimistic and joyful. I’m not dissimilar.

“Dark clouds may hang on me sometimes, but I’ll work it out.” That line is in there. That’s where my head found itself after being awake for a while. Essentially, what’s the use of worrying? Is worrying really productive? Some will say yes. I’ll admit that one is up for debate. But for me, it’s all about the journey.

As long as I don’t remain stagnant too long and the journey continues, there are essentially no right or wrong decisions. They’re just decisions. There are a gazillion paths we each could take. Those decisions will shape our path, and possibly who we become, but that’s what it’s all about. It’s about getting to the final destination and looking back at the path you carved to get there. And maybe then asking…

“Could I have been anyone other than me?”


Musical History 101

Okay, party-blogger people! I return with the pizza. And this party shall continue, headache be damned. How’s the punch? Take the edge off? Yeah, I’ll bet it did. How ’bout I turn on some tunes? You can’t have a party without tunes!

Unfortunately for you, I get sole decision in the choice of tunes. At least for now. And this is where you learn a little something about me. My favourite band is the Dave Matthews Band. I love and adore DMB. I’m listening to them right now. Coincidence? I think not. I first became aware of them thanks to my old man. It’s one of the greatest things he’s ever done for me. Not that it’s a long list. But I won’t bring up daddy issues here. Not today.

Anyhows, as I was saying…

My old man introduced me to good ol’ DMB. It was 1998. He had their new album, Before These Crowded Streets playing in his car as he drove me to my music exam. Okay, a quick explanation is required here, so please forgive the upcoming tangent – again.

I played the trumpet through high school and shortly thereafter. So, for some eight years I suppose. I haven’t played in years. I keep saying I should, but it never happens. It’s a shame. I do miss it. Anyway, I took it seriously enough to work my way through the AMEB (Australian Music Examinations Board) exams, both theory and practical, all the way up to grade 7. Grade 8 was as about far as you could go, with the only thing after that being some form of diploma. So I did alright. I could technically teach trumpet if I wanted to. Might have been a good idea in hindsight.

So, my father was driving me to my AMEB exam, and Before These Crowded Streets was playing. I enjoyed it, and couldn’t help but notice the absolutely awesome use of saxophone on the album. And as a kid learning any form of brass or woodwind instrument through school, you held onto hope that the opportunity to play with rock bands existed, because lord knows we were so bored of the classical orchestra and all the likes. Even the jazz band was boring because it was too much of the same structure. And it just wasn’t cool. I wanted to play in a Ska band, or Rock band, or jazz trio, or something like that. And so the use of horns in popular music filled me with hope.

But back to the story at hand. I was worried I was going to fail. I suppose Dad had more faith in me than I did. So he bribed me. He suggested that if I passed my exam, he would buy me any music album I wanted. It’s amazing the effect that has on a kid. I was no longer worried about failing my exam. Suddenly I was focused on playing the best damn music the panel had ever heard in their lives. Instead of thinking about what happens if I failed, I was thinking about what happens if I succeed. And I did. I was magnificent (as I remember it). I probably wasn’t. But I passed. And so Dad took me to the music store.

They had one lonely Dave Matthews Band album in the whole store. Before These Crowded Streets. And just the one copy at that. I decided that was it. That was going to be my reward for playing my own music as well as I could.

And I loved it.

I treasure that album. Nowadays I label it my favourite album of all time. I think it’s perfect. And from there I checked out more from Dave Matthews Band and fell madly in love with the band. Their songs have gotten me through every little problem I’ve encountered in my life. They feel like a family to me in a way. The collection of DMB albums and merchandise and all that I own, feel more like sentimental belongings than actually part of my music collection.

But that’s probably enough of a history lesson about my musical tastes for now. I am going to go enjoy some more DMB.


Let me know, how did you first come about your favourite band/artist?