Still on the Outside Looking In

As we’re working on finishing this latest album – and right now I’m in the middle of finally getting Motorcar done, the opening track – I’m thinking about one of the songs that sort of define both the CD and who we’ve been as a band these past couple of years. It’s On the Outside, Looking In. You may have heard it since we’ve been playing it live this past year, it’s become a standard. Here’s the lyric – 

We’re all right now, just a blip on the radar screen, we’re free wheeling orbit, and low

Low enough to hear distant conversation, free wheeling speculation dims in the soft light of a promise

Still on the outside, looking in

Feel the soul of the landscape, feel it run right through our veins, we’re near, and we know we’re not alone

A Quixotic Situation, we’re not immune to hesitation, still we will set out for the follow

Not sure if this is how it ends

We’re all right now, just a blip on the radar screen, we’re free wheeling orbit, and slow

Slow enough to feel every consternation, not afraid of confrontation, we have no fear for the fallout

No better place than where we’ve been

Still on the outside, looking in

It is a 3 minute pop song, in the same vein as Permission or Dust & Ashes, something like that. And like those songs, it speaks for us as a band, right where we are and how we see things. I remember one drive out to Arizona last year, Shawn and I talking about wanting to have a presence in the community of music we’re in, and feeling like we’ve finally at least gotten to the point where we’re a blip on the radar screen. Yet still on the fringe, still knocking on the door of acceptance. Is this all there is? Is there more? Should we be content with what we’ve done, or be striving for more? Our feeling still is that we are somewhere in the Americana-type community at large, and yet we can’t seem to break in to our own local scene in L.A. (such as it is, and there is some good music happening here). 

Our friendship, our music and our good friends around the country keep us from feeling spent. This new CD will give us some lift, and continue the thread of music we’ve tried to create from these honest places inside us. Hopefully we’ll get to play out more, in better venues and festivals, this time around.  But I’m guessing we’ll always be on the outskirts of the place we feel we should be central to. Is it just us? A Quixotic Situation, that’s what I call it. To dream the impossible dream, to set out on an unlikely and wholly optimistic quest. That’s kind of what it feels like, usually. It drove us to the Tour of the Brave, and it drives us today.



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