A Movie Script Ending

First things first: I’m one hell of a singer/songwriter. This much I finally know.

You, Dear Reader, are like, “What an asshole!” Right? Well, as always, let me explain (though you’re welcome to think that I’m an asshole).

I turn 33-years-old on September 4th. Now, I’ve been singing on stage in one capacity or another since fifth grade. I’ve been playing in rock bands since I was sixteen. I’ve been playing guitar since I was eighteen. And I’ve been performing in New York City for nearly ten years. Still, it’s only within the last year or so that I’ve finally felt like I’m good at it. And it was only two weeks ago — Saturday morning August 7th, to be exact — that I realized that I am an Artist. And you know what else? I think I’ve finally found my voice. How f***ed up is that? 33-years-old!

This is pretty major stuff, really. I’ve wrestled for years with my place and in the whole thing, and my value. I’m no Dave Matthews, David Byrne, or even David Gray, by a long shot. I’m just some guy who plays his songs a couple times a month for fifty people at a time. Not a big deal, really. That is, none of the external validation: the deal, the dough, the entourage. And — especially given my day job at The MTV — these are the things culture rewards its stars with. Or seems to. Even though, I know now, that stuff’s not really what it’s all about.

I think it’s about how it feels. And lemme’ tell you what last night felt like. I’m blind in the blue and white light. My voice comes back to me huge and round and full and deep and it’s soaring. It’s completely on its own. I have nothing to do with it. I’m out of body. And it’s beautiful. And I’m as amazed as anyone, like the dude I’m hearing isn’t me. And I think he’s pretty good.

Yunno’, I’m too hung over, and have too much to do to really do this thread any justice. I have a Video Music Awards videoconference in six minutes and I’m barefoot, not to mention completely unprepared. There’s really a lot more to it, like how I’ve finally let go of love songs not being cool, me not being matinee handsome, etc etc. But I’m out of steam, and I’m out of time. The bottom line, really, is that I’m grateful to have had even one moment like last night in a whole lifetime. And I’m grateful to you for sharing it with me.

“Now we all know the words were true in the sappiest songs.”

Thank you, Ben Gibbard. And goodnight, Elizabeth.

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