Show A Little Faith
Posted on January 16, 2012
The last couple of weeks have seen me in a pretty dark place, reflected by some of the words I shared in my last few posts. Whilst things did look, for some time at least, to be completely dark and without the presence of hope, I sit here this evening feeling better now than I have done in quite some time.
It will come as no surprise to most that the spiritual healing which I have experienced over the past short while has been driven by the music of Bruce Springsteen. Yesterday evening something beautiful happened, as The Boss himself joined the Light of Day Concert in Asbury Park, New Jersey. For a good few hours he played with musicians from far and wide, and inspired in the few thousand people there the love and happiness which makes life worth living. Springsteen was, of course, on top form, and looks more ready than ever to embark on the World Tour which lies ahead this year.
24 hours ago I was feeling totally awful, and ended up sitting alone into the night with nothing but painful memories and a heavy heart to keep me company. I was blessed however in that I did have contact with a few good friends who I know were concerned about me, but who offered their support. Upon waking up this morning I entered this day in the same way that I did finish yesterday, but with receiving a message from a dear friend, and listening to the music of Bruce Springsteen, I felt a wave of faith come over me and now feel absolved of whatever it was which was causing me the pain I have described.
It is pretty amazing the power which someone can have on one’s own feelings. It took literally one message to make me feel better, and only a couple of friends to lift my spirits. Then when this evening came I saw for the first time the footage from yesterday’s Light of Day Concert, and I was reminded of all the reasons to believe.
Life is just so inexplicably beautiful, yet the contrast with the darkness which is often so prevalent can sometimes detract from the beauty which really is all around us – beauty in expression, beauty in others, beauty in relationships with others, and beauty in the natural world we live in. I was blinded not by light, but by darkness. I forgot my reasons to believe, and how important it is to show a little faith. (After all, there’s magic in the night).
One of the many things which I love about Bruce Springsteen is his ability to unite people in his words which reflect our soul’s deepest desires to feel fulfilled, and loved. This was beautifully reflected last night when The Boss took to the stage with his fellow musicians to play “Thunder Road”… Take a look at what happened.
Roughly 1600 people there, everyone singing the words which Bruce himself penned over 36 years ago. With joy, happiness, and love. In every way possible Springsteen’s music was harnessed to reflect every great quality of not only what it means to be alive, but to live in this beautiful world too, with people around us. Fundamentally this is the effect which the music of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band has on people – it unites them. Whether that be in the face of adversity, or whilst experiencing intense joy. Providing us with something to face the world with, Bruce’s music is truly testament to the power of artistic expression. He and his band are essentially the pinnacle of musical perfection.
Sitting by the bank of the River Tay yesterday, I was in a state of deep reflection. I sat looking at the bridge with the water raging beneath it wondering about life and questioning why it was that, despite how ever hard I tried, I couldn’t heal the people I love. Feeling totally alone in that moment I turned to Springsteen, and – rather poignantly – “The River”. I felt an intensely personal connection between myself and the music, but more interesting is how in a moment I felt so terribly lost in the world, I turned to music. Not only to music, but to Bruce Springsteen… A man who I basically listen to all the time. I know I am not alone. That moment is one which many share. Bruce provides an immeasurable number of people with the strength to face life with… One of the many interesting things about Springsteen fans is that they are never “casual”. You either become infatuated, or you don’t. His music is not just music, it is a way of life, and it is a definition of life.
The great thing is the fact that Bruce has such fun too. I mean, it is profoundly moving and equally wonderful that his lyrics can sustain us when times are so tough, but also it is important to remember how they accompany us when times are great too. Life is about love, but it is also about having a bit of damn fun from time to time too! With that in mind, check this video – also from Light of Day – where the New Jersey Poet, and Rock ‘n’ Roll Laureate of a generation himself, Bruce Springsteen, proves himself to be one seriously cool rockin’ daddy too… Who really knows how to have fun.
With the same vigour and love which the crowd at Light of Day shared yesterday, with Bruce, I hope we can continue into 2012 with. I was mistaken to feel alone in this world, as I came to realise that with Bruce Springsteen and good friends, I will never be alone again. And even when loneliness feels like the only truth in your life, nor will you ever have to face life alone again either… I recognise the stark contrast between this post and yesterday’s, but I mean it when I say that once again music has contributed to my healing. As have people who, despite being so far away, are as caring as even my closest friends are.
Here’s to friendship, love, music, and Bruce Springsteen and the ‘The heart-stopping, pants-dropping, house-rocking, earth-shaking, booty-quaking, Viagra-taking, love-making -Le-gen-dary E – Street – Band!’.
Finally, soon to be published on The Light in Darkness’ official website, www.thelightindarkness.com, is a piece I wrote about the Big Man, Clarence Clemons. I am excited to have a piece of writing published and really hope that my words positively reflect the feelings of the E Street Nation regarding the BIGGEST man you’ve ever seen, who would have been 70 last week.