As many of you know, I’m a songwriter. Not a successful or professional one, but a serious one nonetheless. Interesting that two of my favorite musicians ever (both in my top 5, both having spent years in my “top one” at some point), and two of the biggest songwriting influences on me were born in the same month of the same year (May 1945), and in the past couple years, both of them have published biographies, which I just read one after the other.
Peter Townshend is the person who made me want to play guitar, as I discovered him in my early teens, and made me want to write songs. Honestly, I still love the sound he made with his guitar in the 70s better than any other… ever… If you pay attention, you’ll see his influence all over my guitar playing and songwriting. His book tells the story of a man who has made every mistake imaginable, paid for it, and seems happy in spite of all that, notwithstanding all the loved ones he’s lost over just under 70 years. And his book made me thankful that I never had his career, honestly.
Bruce Cockburn is the guy who made me want to keep writing seriously, as I discovered him in my late teens. He made me want to care about other people more than I did, and influenced my playing in a whole different direction. He also made just about every mistake imaginable, and reading his memoir made me think that maybe I was lucky not to be him, too. I’m saddened that he seems to have really lost his faith, and wonder if experiences like his might have done that to me…
So… my favorite life…? Still mine. I’m still with the wife of my youth and neither of those guys’ first marriages endured. I don’t look back on tons of regrets (yeah, I’ve got a few, so do you), and in general, I really like my life just the way it is.
So yeah… this… right here… this is my favorite.