Saturday, January 14, 2012

where the love spilled out they called it art

Have you ever found a CD that you fell totally, completely in love with?

I have.

And it was totally unexpected. Well, maybe not totally, but I wasn't expecting it. Maybe that is totally. Who knows. I'm tired, and done contemplating the phrase.

When I was a daycamp director for Shetek Lutheran Ministries in the summer of 2005, my friends (co-workers, what have you) and I were in Sioux City, IA shopping. While there, I came across a music/CD store, and was browsing the discount bin. The CD I found was Edwin McCain's "The Austin Sessions." I already owned two of his CDs and liked them, and thought the $4.99 sticker was quite a bargain, so I purchased it.

I would like to be able to report that I took it back to our host family's house and listened to it right away on my discman, but that'd be a lie.

It wasn't until almost a year later that I finally opened it and gave it a listen.

I remember the setting vividly. It was my college dorm room, spring of 2006. I was an RA that year and had a room to myself. Jake and I were engaged, and he was over visiting. At one point, we were going through my CDs to find some music to listen to, and there the CD was. So, we opened it. Then, I laid down in the middle of my floor and used my red body pillow to support my head. Jake joined me and we laid there listening to the CD in its entirety... more than once.

Immediately, I loved it.

It's a mostly acoustic set (I don't know if there's drums or piano, the CD is in my car currently) but it's mainly guitar, mandolin, possibly banjo (I could look it up, but like I said, I'm tired). I love acoustic music, so it's right up my style.

What I wasn't prepared for was to fall in love with each and every song. I don't know that it's honestly happened to me before this CD, nor after. I like most songs on most CDs I own, but I don't love them all.

Sure, some of the songs on the CD are somewhat dark or somber, but some are really upbeat and bright sounding. And they're all just amazing.

If I recall correctly, after researching the album a long time ago, most, if not all songs, are covers that McCain did of various other artist's music. But, not once had I heard any song before. I haven't looked any of them up since, either.

Sadly, when we moved, I lost my original CD, and it's really hard to find. Brand new on, it's over $20. But, because I loved the CD so much, I had burned a copy for a friend or two years ago, and one of my darling friends re-burned me a copy to have at home again, because I've missed it so much.

Even Spencer likes some of the songs. He loves to dance to "Little Girls."

Jake loves the songs, too. His ambition is to learn to play them all.

I remember once, listening to the song "Romeo and Juliet" in Jake's... gold... car (I forget what kind of car it was) in the country late at night while we were driving home from somewhere. I was suddenly overcome with the realization that one day, we'll die, and how I really hope that it's together because I can't imagine either of us having to live without the other.

My favorite song on the CD, however, is called "No Choice." I will leave you with a link to a cover of it by some guy on youtube: (because it's all I could find) and the lyrics. It's just downright beautiful.

It was a love so big that it filled his heart
Til it swelled and finally burst apart
And where the love spilled out they called it art
But he never really had no choice

Whoa, he had no choice
No, he never had no choice
When he gave his river a voice
He never really had no choice.
He was thinking that the pain came much too soon
When he locked himself up inside his room
Well it hurt real bad to write that tune
but he never really had no choice
And there were some who could not understand
When he built those castles with his hands
And he knew damn well they were only sand
But he never really had no choice.


Sometimes a man sometimes a boy
And he made some music and he made some noise
But he felt his pain and he felt his joy
But he never really had no choice.
There was a beautiful fire inside of him
As he balanced his way out on that limb
Could've burned right through that branch so thin
but he never really had no choice


And they all talked about him when he died
They studied and they theorized
But when he was through they'd laughed and cried
And he never really had no choice
It was a love so big that it filled his heart
'Til it swelled and finally burst apart
Where the loved spilled out they called it art
But he never really had no choice



  1. I am so glad that you sent me a copy of this CD. It's one of my favorites, as well. It isn't often that you can listen to a CD straight through & love every single song on it.