“The phrase and the day and the scene harmonized in a chord. Words.”
― James Joyce

. . .

See the Beauty: Time

. . .

Music lyrics have always fascinated me.

I used to sit for hours reading through the words while the music played. Sometimes understanding their meaning, sometimes not — but always curious how those words and stories came to be.

Like the intrigue inside . . .

“Listen to the color of your dreams.” — The Beatles

“How many ears must one man have before he can hear people cry?” — Bob Dylan

“We’re just two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl. ” — Pink Floyd

“Dying is easy. It’s living that scares me to death.” — Annie Lennox

“It’s sad and it’s sweet and I knew it complete when I wore a younger man’s clothes.” — Billy Joel

“All lies and jest. Still a man hears what he wants to hear and disregards the rest” — Simon and Garfunkel


And while I’ve been writing for more of my life than I haven’t, I’ve never tried to write music lyrics.

Until now.

This summer, I talked for hours with my friend and singer-songwriter, Claire Holley, about her process of writing lyrics and melodies. I left our conversation with a commitment to finally try it out, and Claire spurred me on even more with a promise to my lyrics to music.

So I started writing.

And, well, it wasn’t easy. I found it surprisingly difficult to put my story together in this way. Should it rhyme? Should it not? Should it be literal? Metaphorical? Relatable to all or personal to only a few?

But it was also a fun challenge to try out this new art form.

I sent Claire my lyrics this fall and, true to her word, she put my lyrics to music. In exchange, I offered her some photographs of mine to accompany two new music tracks — Blowing Pines and O Come O Come Emmanuel, which comes out today!

You can take a listen to the finished song via the video below. And it’s called Time because I love how a photograph has the power to stop time.



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