Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Count Soul, Not souls

It has been quite an adventure to be traveling around performing over the last 10 days or so. But this has been a different adventure than I have ever had before. These travels have taken me, not only from place to place, but into different communities, churches, homes - all intimate spaces, made up of real people.

Some of these shows have been raucous and packed to the walls with people. Others of them have been smaller, almost like conversations.

Last night's concert at the CSO at the University of Washington was the latter. I had been expecting lots of people - maybe 30. But when the time came, there were 6 folks sitting in the 30 seats we had set out.

In years past this would have been too much for me. I would have felt embarassed, maybe devalued by the seeming lack of interest in what I had to offer. (I immediately think of the concert I played up in Springfield, MA with my college band, "Jarvis", in which the mainenance man at the club set up a ladder right in front of me on the stage and began to change a light bulb in the middle of one of our songs!) But, I am happy to say that that way of seeing a performance is forever gone from my eyes. These days, certainly because of the nature of this music - because it has all come directly out of prayer, and praise of God - I feel confident that what I have to give is worthy, beautiful, and in fact, healing. I know that if someone comes to hear me they are coming to be touched. Even if it is only one person, that feels like a deeply important event.

I have begun to think of it this way- rather than comparing it to the large numbers that I was expecting, I am really delighted at the opportunity of being able to sing something truly meaningful to even one heart. This is more than just a trick because we are sharing the room with Soul, not souls. Who is present at this concert? Soul! how many are there? There is only one, and it is All. When Soul, the real deal, Love itself, is seen and felt in the room, all present feel more life. We all feel more connected, see more opportunities, and feel more excited about life. And that's what it's all about!

Soon I am off on the ferry to Bainbridge Island for one more house show tonight! I have made a specific request that no light bulbs be changed during the show.


  1. Hey Al,

    I'm glad the trip is going well. It sounds very free and refreshing. On the road with God! Good stuff.

  2. Great post, man. I totally know about this. The adventure slidshows and presentations I give at REI's around the country are sometimes not well attended and I have to do the same thing. I also figure, if I just inspire one person to step out side of their daily routine or to better appreciate the world around us, I've done my job.

    Keep up the great tour. Glad you like the PNW. I went to high school up there and really consider the Seattle area "Home".

    Have fun at the summit and give Ben V. a big hug for me! See you guys back in San Diego!