This is why we need songs

The thought came to me in the middle of a sax solo. 

I want to be able to do everything. I know this about myself. Sometimes I let it pull me in too many directions at once. When I moved to Nashville I told anyone who asked all the instruments I could play. I had just left my string band where we traded mandolins, guitars, upright bass and banjo. If I had access to an instrument I wanted to learn it.

I don’t talk about that much anymore. I’ve been slowly realizing something that crystallized last night at the Paul Simon concert.

There are tons of great players out there who are a lot better than me. Without songs, they’re just warming up.

Paul stood aside and all eyes turned to the saxophone player. He could have taken a guitar solo. Over the years he could have learned to play the saxophone himself. But there in the middle of his song he made a space for someone else. For someone to feel it. 

Paul’s song took us to the mountain top. The saxophone made us leap.

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