Thursday, January 3, 2008

All day dyin', and I learned how to live.

Today, ladies and gents, I present for you the Starving Artist Showcase. The poor gaunt famine victim look-alike for the day is Marshall McLean, a Christian musician and a Very Nice Guy by all accounts. I've actually had a chance to meet him; he kindly acquiesced to play at my college last spring (and again this fall, though I missed it), and, hungered for live music, I acquiesced to attend. My fiancé and I caught the tail end of a very pleasant concert to which I found myself wishing I had arrived earlier.

In an interview with The Spokesman-Review's (Spokane) Isamu Jordan, it becomes clear that Marshall has taken the road less travelled: "I wasn't exactly what you would call a cool kid. A lot of that social time that most high schoolers would be having, I was just the kid playing guitar alone. I took a few lessons here and there, but a lot of it was birthed out of loneliness. I submerged myself into trying to have an outlet for just being lonely." His love for his wife and their new baby (both of whom he dotes upon endlessly - an enormous snapshot of them graces his homepage) forms a strong, peaceful center for his music. Although his slim frame and long hair give the impression that you'll hear a John Mayer-style crooner, don't make judgements. McLean's raspy voice and drillingly honest and introspective lyrics, topped gracefully by his beautiful, quiet guitar stylings (playing that has won him Gibson Guitars' stamp of approval) may just be a worship service in themselves.

Here are the lyrics to "Ordinary Things," a song McLean wrote and played for his wedding, and one I can't get out of my head today:

When the lights go down in our ordinary town and the street lights come on agaist the grey, from where we lay our heads on our ordinary beds we're gonna love you more than yesterday.
And as we fade into dreams, we're gonna dream about the ordinary things,

So retrace our steps, follow all the tracks we left to the hour we first believed; and after all we've seen, you've been in the inbetweens, so we'll look for our God in the ordinary things.

And when the lights come on in the half-risen sun, we are waking with noises in our ears. If city sounds hide truth, common things will be our proof; you'll be the mystery we wrap our hands around.
And on an ordinary day, our feet can dance and walk through the grey.

And from the biggest thoughts we think, to the dishes in the sink, you'll be the inbetween; and we know just where you are, 'cause you said you're not that far from the ordinary things.

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