I wrote the first lines of this song right after I graduated from college. I didn’t quite know what to do with it:
I can see the light at the end of the tunnel it’s a
freight train drinking whiskey from a funnel
It sounded pretty unoriginal, but at the time “pretty unoriginal” was still original to me so I kept it stashed away in my special little notebook full of ideas and didn’t think about it for many years afterward. This type of song isn’t really my style and drinking lots of whiskey is a stupid subject—especially a metaphorical freight train doing it. It doesn’t even really make a lot of sense.
I resurrected this segment of a song for the 2011 Blue Light Live Singer/Songwriter Competition. The Blue Light Live is a special place to me and countless other musicians and lovers of live music in Lubbock. The Singer/Songwriter competition drew so many players not just from Lubbock, but from all over west Texas. The song has been a favorite of mine to play ever since then and is inspired by Lubbock, West Texas, and all of the amazing musicians playing music out there.
When it came down to record it for Rescue, I liked it as more of a light rock tune. I borrowed a 12-string guitar from the music store down the road to add a little color to the arpeggiated riff:
I call it the Balcony Song because I wanted a record of singing and playing it on the day I had fully written the tune and lyrics. I recorded it on the balcony of an apartment I hated, hence the title of the video. The name of the song “The Balcony Song” somehow to me sounds better than “Freight Train” or “I Can See the Light.” Yuck. It sounds like a declaration screamed from a balcony--perhaps as if someone is screaming at a balcony from below while having their belongings thrown out a multi-story window--something like that
Please enjoy “The Balcony Song” in it’s entirety on my new album, RESCUE.
Also, if you would like to watch the original video from the day I finished the song for the Blue Light Live Sing/Songwriter Competition, here it is!