Monday, October 3, 2011

Set Out To Sea

(K. laCour) This is another of Karissa’s message songs, vignettes from her inner dialog. Beautiful thing; certainly not a radio tune. Some of the lyric…

You hope for the best then you leave the rest
Maybe someday, the waves will take you on your way
You tell me of places you long to go
Of all the things that you yearn to know
So tell me why are you still at bay?

Sailor, sail
Set out to sea and start steering
Start steering at the stars

A song of hope and determination, right?

Except that’s not what she wrote. I thought it was for months, but one day when I was mixing it, I just couldn’t, in my mind, make out the word ‘start’. It sounded like ‘stop’. When I asked her about it, she said I had the whole line wrong. It was really ‘stop staring at the stars’.

Oh my God. It hit me like a ton of bricks. It wasn’t a song of determination; going at it with new energy; it was a song of giving up. Setting out to sea wasn’t pursuing her dream. It was about getting on with her life.

We were only two songs away, both hopeless introspections, from her being gone.

Set Out To Sea


  1. Gee whiz, Robb. One would hope that when someone quits a particular dream in order to get on with a more productive life, it isn't really "Goodbye" but "See you later."

    Over the last 40-plus years on the academic staff at UW-Madison (my clarkkent job), I've had quite a number of extremely talented students who were into all sorts of unusual/artsy/fascinating endeavors. Yet they were in my course to fulfill a requirement for their particular academic program: nursing, dietetics, clinical microbiology, pre-med, etc. One student in particular took time off from school to be a ranger up in the Apostle Islands (in Lake Superior) - a singing ranger, no less. He was totally filled with songs of his own. After returning to school he eventually became a successful family practitioner and ultimately Chief Medical Officer of the Canadian Territory of Nunavut. I just betcha music is still in him as he contemplates retirement.

    I could go on with more examples.

    But nursing! A person like Karissa - with all of the sensitivity that comes through in her songs - would probably make a great nurse. We so need more individuals like that.

    Not a radio song? WORT-FM in Madison, Wis. is the archetypal community listener-sponsored potpourri radio station that is streamed around the world, and I get to fill in on a couple two-hour shows in November. Can I get your permission to play one or both of Karissa's songs you've posted? Now that the regular host of this show is on Facebook, there might be some extra feedback. (Someday I'll ask permission to play the demo of "Edge Of Love.")

  2. Karissa's music necessitates radio play. I support your quest goodly sir !