The Sun Will Rise

I warned you all. Kelly Clarkson is up next for the Soundtrack for Successful Failure. Again a case of right life space, right song. I won’t go into the details, but let’s just say “The Sun Will Rise,” from Clarkson’s album “Stronger,” came along at a time when I needed the reminder that, inevitably, the sun will, in fact, rise.

Every new day has a dawn. At some point, we’ve all lost our light, but, eventually, it will be alright.

Let’s not mistake, my life isn’t filled with unending trials. In fact, at the moment, it’s pretty good. But, we all go through dark periods. Those moments where we don’t feel like the veil will ever lift. That we’re in a desolate winter in desperate need of a little sunshine.

That’s what “The Sun Will Rise” means to me. Another day, another chance, another moment. To what? To prove you’ve got this. Whatever it is, you’ve got this because you’re shining light when others want to be a dark cloud.

We Come Running

Not to try to ratchet up my cool quotient, but I’d heard of Youngblood Hawke long before the American Idol commercials from this most recent season.

First, it’s a very irreverent song. You can’t help to bop to the beat. But, it truly were the lyrics that struck me when I first heard this song. Lyrics like, “Headed for the open door, Tell me what you’re waiting for, Look across the great divide, Soon they’re gunna hear, The sound, the sound, the sound, When we come running.”

When I hear these lyrics I think of someone running free. Being completely unencumbered in their experience. I picture a person sprinting with their arms stretched to the sky, with a huge smile plastered on their face, thinking of nothing but release and possibility.

Pre-living wide, I used to hang on to a lot of things with an unflinchingly tight grip. Things that I should have released to God, the universe, just in general. I never felt free to completely let go. To be carefree. What I love about this song is that it reminds me to be irreverent. Why should we feel laced up or tied down by expectations? Why shouldn’t we shatter through these things at a full-tilt run, like football players busting through a paper banner just before game time?

Take that visual with you when an obstacle seems a little to hard.

For the First Time

Matt Wertz crossed my path a few years ago. I knew that a friend was attending his concert, and always eager to learn more about new music, I looked him up. I liked his style. He was good, I had to admit, but it wasn’t until his most recent album “Weights & Wings” that I truly appreciated his songwriting.

His song, “For the First Time” is very special to me.

I first hear this song when I was contemplating starting a blog. I’d been thinking about the vision I had regarding my life for a long time, and then the turning point happened.

His lyric, “For the first time, I finally realized, I’m what’s in the way,” really struck me. I came to the hard conclusion that I was what was in my own way. In terms of being happy, of moving on, of living wide, I was what was in my way.

I think in a lot of ways, we all get in our own way. We let obstacles seem too big. We let dreams seem to unattainable. We believe there are limits. But really, aren’t those limits all in our own heads? Aren’t we really what is in the way?

So, riddle me this, how can you get out of your own way in terms of living wide?

The Rising

Tonight’s second post is one of my favorite songs from The Boss, Bruce Springsteen. I remember him saying he wrote “The Rising” as an anthem to latch onto after the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center. He wanted it to be an inspiration, a juxtaposition between what life was like before, during, and what it should feel like after such a horrible event.

“The Rising” is classic Springsteen. It’s simple instrumentation, it’s hard-driving rock rhythm and it’s inspirational lyrics. A commentary on pain and how there is always a way to rise up from it. To be better for it. And to love harder because of it.

I’ve often said, living wide is in the lessons you’re given and what you make of them. I often take to heart Springsteen’s reminder to see the opportunity through the hardship. Quite simply, it makes you better.

Gotta Be More

He is one of my favorite artists of all time, yet not many people know who is, which is a shame. If you dig modern blues, or funk-infused southern rock, and you don’t know Marc Broussard, where have you been?

To show how much I love Mr. Broussard, I have been to nine of his shows since 2004. Every time he plays anywhere remotely close to me, I simply have to go see him. “Gotta Be More” is from his first EP “Momentary Setback.” Most people know him for “Home,” which is also a great song, but “Gotta Be More” speaks more to the living wide philosophy.

I first discovered Marc when I was walking around a book/music store randomly in 2004. I was in a job that took up most of my life—I’m not kidding, I was working 26 weekends a year—I was worn out, tired and needed a distraction. So on one of my rare, free Saturday nights, I took myself to a movie and walked around this book/music store after. Marc’s first full-length album “Carencro” was playing over the sound system, and I just had to know who he was.

I bought the album that night, and any and all music he has produced has been on constant rotation in my house and car ever since.

I hope y’all are enjoying the Living Wide Soundtrack for Successful Failure thus far. Remember, if you have a song suggestion, I’m open. Make sure to leave the name and why you love it in the comments section below or on Facebook at any time.