Brokenness, Expression, and Healing

  “The worse childhood you have, the better artist you become.” The renowned visual artist, Marina Abramovic, made this statement during an interview for CBS Sunday Morning some time ago. It made an immediate mark on me and rang painfully true. I don’t know much about the details of her childhood, but based on this statement and the little bit I do know, it doesn’t seem to have been a very good one. For her, the pain of her childhood is the fuel for her art. I think she is onto something very important with the above statement. For me, … Continue reading Brokenness, Expression, and Healing

The Emotive, Provocative Music of Field Report

  I’m spending some time with Field Report’s new album, Marigolden, this morning. This is a new relationship and I’m just becoming acquainted with the album, but I think we’re going to be good friends. It is rich, full, provocative, and emotive. And Christopher Porterfield’s odd analogies and word pictures are ever present. I will never forget the first time I heard Field Report. In February of 2013, Kalispell, Shane Leonard’s project, was set to play a backstage concert at the State Theater here in Eau Claire. I was super excited about this show, as Shane’s music and friendship has … Continue reading The Emotive, Provocative Music of Field Report

Softly, Dear, Sarcasm, and Sober Subjects

I’ve been contributing articles for Volume One for the past couple of years. One of the first ones I wrote covered the emergence of a new band from the Eau Claire area called Softly, Dear (New on the Scene). Back then, Softly, Dear was just starting to figure out who they were musically. Even though the first tracks they released were a little rough, I could certainly here some significant talent and creativity at work. After writing that piece for V1, I honestly didn’t pay much attention to the band for a while. And then I saw them play at … Continue reading Softly, Dear, Sarcasm, and Sober Subjects

Anger, Grief, and The Civil Wars

When I was growing up, heavy metal or hard rock was not okay in my house. It was the devil’s music. So, I never went near it until about 1986, when, in my youth group at church, I was introduced to Rez Band and Stryper, a couple of rock bands comprised by Christians. Rez (or The Resurrection Band) was gritty and raw, and I found that very appealing. And then there was Stryper, the opposite of gritty and raw, but still with a little edge (especially in light of the environment in which I grew up). These two bands were … Continue reading Anger, Grief, and The Civil Wars