Edinburgh, Scotland is haunted. Around every corner there are graveyard or underground ghost tours. But in Edinburgh visitors seek out the spirits to confront a blank page, to shoo away distractions, and to let you know when you’ve done enough or not. Maybe it’s the Scottish ales, but we hear spirits speak to us when we feel we are in the wrong place or overreaching. With the help of Kirsten Adamson, a local musician, I wrote this song. It was inspired by these feelings and the chapter of a random book I grabbed off my shelf one evening that I intended to use as a makeshift clipboard in the Café Royal. Robert Tristram Coffin, a Maine writer, was comparing the works of New England poets in this particular book. I opened it out of blank page frustration and discovered a chapter called, “The Artist in the Wrong World”. Perhaps Scottish ales inspired me that evening, but I think it was an old Maine ghost. Listen here.
Side B: London
“London” is about the death of a friendship. I’ve noticed recently that sometimes the friends we make during our formative years end up our wedding/funeral friends. This song is about the sad realization that you’ve let important things slip. It’s also about me returning home from Manchester one summer and discovering that most everyone thought I moved to London. It reminded me of my northern friends who would often complain that most of the world considers “London” synonymous with “England”. Do they feel left out of the big picture? Maybe that’s why I love Manchester so much. “Junebug” is the about the actual death of a friend and discovering there are people in our lives who hold groups of us together. When they leave the pack, I have found that some things tend to unravel. We have ways of dealing with this. In the outro of “Junebug,” we “let the working week be near, let it fake us through the year”. “Sleeper” offers a little bit of hope: I had to travel a great distance to gain this perspective, and maybe that’s sad too. Listen here.
Illustrations by Ryan Eyestone.