In the summer of 2013 we ran out of options to fight my cancer in Salt Lake City. We flew to Houston to participate in a study testing a biotherapy called Blinatumomab. As with many of my treatments we were uncertain of the outcome and understood that there was a possibility that I could die. My amazing friend Teri paid for me to have several hours of studio time to record some songs that I have written in the last couple years. I found a studio near Sugarland Texas and spent two days there recording six songs. Only four however, made the final cut. If you follow me you know that every song has a story. Below I have written a short biography for each song as well as the lyrics. Enjoy!
I Met the Devil
Inspired by the classic song The Devil Went Down to Georgia, I have always wanted to write a song about a showdown I had with the devil. It took a while but I finally had a standoff with the father of lies in of all places the Smiths parking lot. The great part is that I withstood his persuasions and basically said, "Look Mr. Lucifer you have no idea what I've got going for me if I stay righteous and I'm not willing to give it up."
At a time my immunity was particularly low I contracted RSV. My treatment was to be 5 days but was later extended to 10. During this time I had to breath an aerosol medication for one hour every 8 hours and then take a shower to decontaminate. I wasn't able to see my wife or my son during this time because they were also sick and could reintroduce me to the virus. I did however have my guitar with me and I wrote this song during that hospitalization. I recently joked that I should have named the song "30 Showers" because in ten days I took thirty showers. That's gotta be a record of some kind!
I wrote this song after my first bone marrow transplant in the summer of 2012. The reality of cancer had finally sunk in, and I was dealing with the cruel and unpleasant side effects of chemo, radiation, and a bone marrow transplant. Through my suffering I thought a great deal about eternal life. In this song my life is story and I want it to be told to me. I want to know what happens next, and if I can't know that, I want some assurance that there is more.
I wrote the instrumentation for this song during my first round of chemotherapy just after I was diagnosed. The lyrics didn't come so for a while I just played the guitar part and called in "The Cancer Song". After my first relapse and while we were seeking treatment in Houston, the lyrics finally came. I wanted to record a version but nurses kept interrupting to give me meds or check my blood pressure. Finally I went in the bathroom and was able to record it on my phone without interruptions. I found the acoustics in the bathroom were much better anyway.