Monday, December 15, 2003

Darden Smith, January 10th, 2004

"I don't cry for the wasted years
Or the twisted roads that got me here
I have been to the end of the earth
And I know what standing still is worth
In a Perfect Moment when the stars aligned
Love don't travel in straight lines
And every day of my life Has led me to
This Perfect Moment with you "

"Perfect Moment" from Darden Smith's Sunflower

It takes a certain amount of inner courage and vulnerability to strip away the things you think will please others and learn to live in the "perfect" moment". It is that moment and place where the view from the bottom starts to take on new meaning and change happens. Many albums that endure have found their genesis in that zone. Five years ago, Austin, Texas-based singer-songwriter Darden Smith was without a label deal, had been through a divorce and was wondering what had happened to a "beautiful" life that, only a few years prior, was enjoying personal, critical and commercial success. Beginning in the mid-80's, Smith made a handful of strong albums that took him on a circuitous path from being a rootsy indie Texas singer-songwriter to major label artist, as well as other more transitional efforts. When everything began crashing down in the mid-90's, Smith had to do some serious self-assessments about what he was doing with his career. It was time to take responsibility for his artistic voice or do something else with his life. The epiphanies that resulted became the underlying subtext for Sunflower, Smith's most fully realized and intimate work to date. "At a certain point you have to make the record that you hear in your head. There's no guarantee that it's going to sell anyway, so you might as well do what you want to do -- much as anyone will let you. Fortunately, I'm at the stage where I have complete freedom," adds Smith. "I think if your not out there risking something, people aren't going to be as identified with what you have to say."


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