The Dark: I’ll Let You Go

I’ll Let You Go

Written by Coty Davis

Coty Davis – Vocals, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Rhythm Guitar, Bass Guitar, Drums

Matthew Burns – Co-Producer, Lead Guitars, Keyboard

 

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Songwriter’s Journal: Silence Out Loud

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Sometimes I find myself in the position of having something to say, but with no one to say it to. Worse is the feeling that something should be said, but I’m just not sure what it should be. Silence is often golden but too much becomes oppressive. While it’s not the greatest character trait to ramble your every thought out loud to a willing, and sometimes unwilling, audience, it is a good practice to hear yourself express thoughts. I have become a proponent of journaling but not for the sake of documentation. For the sake of uncluttering my mind of thoughts and ideas. Writing my thoughts forces me to place them in a relatively linear narrative. Once laid out, it becomes easier to fit them into a bigger picture.

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Songwriter’s Journal: Atlas Will Shrug

Jake Wardius is probably my favorite songwriter on the planet. I’ve known him for many years now and we served in Iraq together during our Marine Corps days. He has warehouses full of songs and a very recognizable delivery of them. I hope this is the first of many guest posts by Jake.

Enter Jake


Atlas Will Shrug was an attempt by a novice songwriter to explain how he feels about a complex epic tapestry that dealt with class, culture, and capitalist structure in twentieth century America. When I first started writing songs, it was strictly motivated by love or angst. I was in the formative stages of the craft, which I have yet to gain much more ground from, and held the belief that those two topics to be all-encompassing and final. However, life has a strange way of showing you down an alternate route that makes you see sights you otherwise would have not.

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Songwriter’s Journal: To Spite Letting Go

We often remind ourselves about the dangers of making bad decisions. Worse is the potential to hold onto a situation that has given us every reason to believe it’s going to end horribly. This serves as a self-defense that ultimately makes us think twice about certain life decisions. I’m sure just about everyone can look back on something, or several things, they regret and wonder why they didn’t pull out earlier. Why they ignored red flag after red flag and just kept charging down a road they knew would lead to the cliff’s edge.

That scenario is common. However, a scenario that doesn’t get enough attention is the road checkered in red flags that ended in success. If you think about it, everyone that is truly world class had plenty of notable moments where they did, or reasonably should have, questioned if they were doing the right/smart thing. If they were going the right direction.

Many times the real achievements that we can be proud of gave us plenty of opportunity to quit. But we were too stubborn. We believed in the desired outcome so blindly that it became a self-fulfilling prophecy. Sometimes it’s smart to fold up the cards and walk away from the table. But sometimes the only way to get where you really need to be is to play through no matter what.

To Spite Letting Go

written by Coty Davis

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Songwriter’s Journal: The Dirt Road

When I was a teenager we used to drive the back roads at night. Nice and slow, listening to country gold. There was no reason to be in any kind of hurry because we were merely waiting. We were always waiting. Finding things to occupy our time while we waited for life to come to us. While we waited for eighteen years old. While we waited for Marine Corps boot camp. While we waited for college. Always looking forward.

Now in my thirties I never feel like I’m waiting on anything. I’m always moving toward something. I’m always trying to make something happen. Sure, that’s worked out for me so far but it feeds a sense of nostalgia for a more simplistic time when I had the luxury of simply waiting.

Rolling along those gravel roads never felt like a waste of time. It never felt like I was missing an opportunity. It was merely an activity to keep me occupied. Something to do while adult life slowly worked its way to me. Now, for better or worse, I feel as though everything I move toward only takes me farther away from an ability or the opportunity to guiltlessly preoccupy myself. I haven’t found a replacement for the slow drive on the dirt road.

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Songwriter’s Journal: Still A Cowboy In Nashville

 

Still A Cowboy In Nashville

written by Coty Davis

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Songwriter’s Journal: A Few Simple Words

Have you ever said something you knew immediately that you shouldn’t have? Yeah, I’ve done that a few times myself. It’s easy to recognize when you’ve taken something a little too far and stepped over a line you know you’ll regret. More disturbing is when you finally get the opportunity to recognize that you haven’t done something that you should have. I have found it to be a general rule that by the time you realize you’ve neglected something that should be a priority, it’s too late. The damage is done.

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Songwriter’s Journal: If That’s How You Think It Should Be

“It has conflicting messages. Maybe it needs some work.” That was the nicest way of saying “the song sucks and we’re not even interested in taking your money and pretending to pitch it.” That was about the time I lost the taste for having songs pitched in Nashville, or anywhere for that matter. After reading those types of emails I would look up at the subject line again: “If That’s How You Think It Should Be.” How appropriate.

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Songwriter’s Journal: I Can’t Say

If you were to browse through my catalog of songs you would not get a very accurate picture of my life. Like most, I find it easier to turn more dramatic instances into songs, but of course that’s not the only experiences I’ve ever had. It’s especially difficult for me to write a song for a specific person on command. I find that I can’t say the things I’d like to say and expect it to flow out in the format of an entertaining song. I have done this a couple times and ultimately they both turned out to be songs that I’m proud of, but it damn sure didn’t come naturally like most of the others. For me it was like trying to dream about something specific. The more I focused on forcing myself in one direction, the more likely I was to veer off into new territory. I can’t help but wonder how often I do this in other aspects of life where I’m merely forcing what I think is the right answer or what I “know” that I should do.

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Songwriter’s Journal: Out of Spite

My grandmother often reminds me of an incident that happened long ago when I was about 6 or 7. I was staying the weekend with her while my parents were out of town. My grandfather worked in a factory and was gone for most of the day leaving me and Maw to play, and sometimes battle, with one another. According to Maw, on one particular occasion I got in trouble for one thing or another and was met with a scolding. In response, I went out into the yard, found a sturdy stick, and beat the hell out of her tomato plants.

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