I was pissing drunk the first time I met Shawn Colvin, or really waved, shouted hello and kept going because I was too embarrassed to meet her face to face in that state. It was a first date with my soon-to-be-boyfriend and I had been told by Shawn's friend and fellow singer/songwriter Christine Lavin to check her out. So we went to this show at the now defunct Speakeasy (it was next to Panchito's on Macdougal Street in NYC) had a little too much fun (it was an amazing show) and decided we'd go back to see her again a few weeks later. I still have the tape I soberly bought from Shawn which, when she got signed the next year, turned into her first CD "Steady On". Since then she has released 8 albums, including Cover Girl - one of my favourite collections of cover songs you'll ever hear (including "This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody)" a David Byrne tune that Shawn turns into the song of longing that one doesn't get from the original recording). But you shouldn't stop there because her lyrics demonstrate an emotional awareness that few songwriters are willing to expose. "I love you so much it's so bizarre" is one line that expresses a wonderment and simultaneous acceptance of the fear and feelings of love that we have all had at one time or another. I can easily say that her music became the soundtrack to my life in Boston and no doubt with her new release "These Four Walls" (her first non holiday or kids c.d. since she had her baby) I can see the same happening to my life here in LA. As I face an uncertain future and try to figure out my next move I take comfort in knowing there is a soul out there who is writing what I may sometimes be afraid to write; something Shawn is very good at - facing the truth inside of her and saying what we all want to say but sometimes push aside. "Would I be saved if I were brave and had a baby..." Damn that line gets me! It's hard not to quote every song that plays while I write this. By the way, if you live in LA she's playing at The House of Blues on Sunset Strip this thursday night. www.shawncolvin.com
I got a very sweet and poetic email over the weekend from my friend Jodi who lives in Brooklyn. We met out here at a coffee shop 6 years ago - I damn near stepped on her Rottweiler during my morning run. It turned out to be 3 weeks before my mother died and so it was a weird turning point in my life but she stayed my friend through it all. She was out here in the summer on '05 - staying with her brother, taking a leave of absence from her NYC life and trying to figure out what to do next and where to be. Her email spoke of a longing to be in two places at once; my patio at happy hour having a 'california' type beverage (cosmo or margarita) on a friday night with Abby and Rebecca, and her Brooklyn apartment with the chilly fall breeze blowing through it. It's a tough call and I know all too well how she feels.
I spent a week back home as many of you know and as usual when I got back to LA I spent the first few days in this lost haze of sleep deprivation and emotional turmoil. The turmoil that maybe is trying to work itself out through this blog. It's very hard to know what to do right now. I have no job, no income, and no clue as to what will happen or where I will be after the New Year settles in. I am very torn. There is much to be said for being in LA (rainy cool decembers, my awesome neighbourhood and of course cheap rent to note a few), and much to be had for being back east - four seasons, family, old friends, New England, to name a few. There is much to be had on either coast and I certainly don't know where my head should be. You'd think with all this time to think that I would have a better clue. But I don't. So I'll leave you with this verse from Shawn's "Round Of Blues" off of her second CD, Fat City: "Here we go again, another round of blues, several miles ago I set down my angel shoes, on a lost highway, for a better view....".
Thanks for tuning in....Until next Monday.....CHEERS!!!!