this is one of the most important albums in the collection. i had randomly selected the 2007 edition, but felt the need to start at the beginning with this one.
in late 2005 i had a one night stand that somehow became more in spite of great distance. would that have stayed as it was on that one night; but i’d not have connected to someone else on the other side of the world and have a whole new set of musical experiences and some even more remarkable human ones.
the one night stand began during the west indies cricket test match in adelaide (not at it!). the protagonist was the creator/participant in some of my most memorable intimate moments. the cat jumping on the bed in the middle of it all and looking confused; the ability to spark a physical reaction over 1000 kms away through written word; a towel upheld and the parting gift.
it ended some months later sitting in the canberra airport with the statement “i don’t think i can keep saying goodbye”. i wasn’t ready to say goodbye.
to that end, a couple of months later i was trawling through the lyrics and mp3 extracts of will oldham songs i’d never heard on the french fansite palace free and found the cover of a lucinda williams song there’s something about what happens when we talk which was a duet between will and mary feiock. it was 60 seconds of gorgeous quiet acoustic guitar, rising and falling, and a first verse that identified so clearly what i wanted to say in a woman’s voice to a man i was sure i loved.
thus i was desperate to track the whole thing down. but all i knew from the site was that it was on the louisville is for lovers 2003 compilation. to be honest, the internet, google and youtube still weren’t catch-alls in 2006, and my search was in vain. no yield.
funnily enough, another couple of months passed by and i searched again. in the interim, a myspace page had appeared that had songs streaming from the compilations, and offered copies of the limited CD runs for $10 USD. i wrote with my request, ‘sent’ the money and finally experienced the joy that was opening the clearly homemade packaging and covers. number 89/1000 on the back in the bottom right hand corner.
i put it in the CD player and tracked to the song. hearing beyond the 60 second mark was worth the wait, and almost as good as being with him. i don’t think i had truly wanted something that badly and that genuinely in my life before. the remaining 2.22 minutes of a song…
two things happened upon receipt of those CDs. the first was that I discovered a range of other excellent louisville bands and musicians, and put a few pieces of my music puzzle together (like dave pajo). the second was that one of those bands struck me more than any of the others, the gallery singers, and in asking the curator of the compo for more music/information about them provided a direct compliment to the band ‘owner’ himself, john king. that started a remarkable period of communication, musically and philosophically, that made me grow and understand myself and others more than i ever had to that point.
i also wrote the lyrics of there’s something about what happens on a torn piece of paper in pencil, while on the canberra leg of the research journey, to leave in the letterbox of the one night stand.
nothing ever came of that, but in the end it didn’t have to.
if i had my way, i’d be in your town. i might not stay but at least i would have been around.