Before I ever became a professional writer, I was a musician: playing in bands, singing, performing, especially writing songs. It was a dominant creative force in my life for years; but I realized, at a certain point, that the rock and roll lifestyle wasn’t for me. I was far more suited to sitting in a room, dreaming stories and playing with my imaginary friends.
Music has remained an intimate part of my life—I continue to write songs and play both guitar and piano—and the musician’s mindset, I think, impacts everything else I do: the way I think, the way I create, the way I craft my stories. It once came to me that everything I do creatively, I do as a musician.
One of the most wonderful projects I’ve ever been involved in was a 1997 CD I recorded—aided by my old friend Tricia Alexander and an amazing group of Chicago musicians—called How Many Lifetimes? Performing often manifested incredible stress in my life, but being in a recording studio, building a song layer by layer, remains as pure and exhilarating a creative act as I’ve ever known. How Many Lifetimes? is a piece of work I’m incredibly proud of, which is why I’ve decided to share it with you here. You can download the album, or purchase a physical copy, using the CD Baby widget below. (It's also available via iTunes.)
And, with a little luck and grace, I’ll be able to go back into the studio soon to record the dozens of other songs I’ve amassed. I think the next one will be a double album—and I can’t wait.