producer, guitarist, founder of Windham Hill Records
September 1, 2012
I've Been Blessed
It was an exercise in humility being a guitarist at Windham Hill. I was surrounded by Alex de Grassi and Michael Hedges, for God’s sake!
I had to look at what I had, which was melody, and be at peace with that and work with what had been given me. Ego could have stepped in and forced me into a life of futile servitude in chasing these titans in their respective geniuses. Thankfully, I was grateful for what I had.
I had an interviewer ask me many years ago how my music had evolved over the years and I think I sat there in stunned silence for the better part of a minute searching for the answer. I finally said “It hasn’t.” I remember that answer making me feel a bit embarrassed as it came to me, but by the time I said it, it was actually rather joyful and peaceful. I do what I do. I do it pretty well, and I have always been at peace with being who I am musically.
People have written me over the years saying how much my music has mattered to their lives. There was the woman from Idaho who told me she loved washing lettuce every evening to my music. There are the stories of how my music helped them through heartbreak and loneliness.
Then there are the ones that tell me that a husband, wife, father or mother, brother or sister chose to listen to my music as they left this earth. There is no honor that could ever fall to someone more beautiful than this and I have tears in my eyes as I write this. I have been lucky.
I’ve been blessed.
I no more understand where my music comes from than I can explain to you Steven Hawking’s concept of Event Horizons.
As I said, I’ve been lucky. I’ve been blessed.