Prairie Musicians: Matthew Griswold

Prairie Musicians: Matthew Griswold



♪ It's where you go
to hear your sound ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to hold your ground ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to sooth your sin ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to please your grim ♪ ♪ Desires ♪ (woman) "Prairie Musicians"
is made possible by the Minnesota Arts
and Cultural Heritage Fund, and the citizens of Minnesota, and by the members
of Prairie Public. [playing in bright folk rhythm] ♪ ♪ A fable's forgotten ♪ ♪ And the brave ones are down ♪ ♪ The cold hearts are many ♪ ♪ As the blood
hits the ground ♪ ♪ And sad eyes are taken ♪ ♪ By the weak and the wise ♪ ♪ When fear
is a virtue ♪ ♪ It can undo the ties ♪ ♪ I will rise I will rise ♪ ♪ I will rise ♪ ♪ I will rise ♪ ♪ Like a child in a moment ♪ ♪ When all the tears are
in his eyes ♪ ♪ I will rise I will rise ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ In the days that follow ♪ ♪ The times
that are frail ♪ ♪ Are the windows
through the wall ♪ ♪ That is put up when we fail ♪ ♪ And the worst is
on the brink ♪ ♪ And the worst
is on the brink ♪ ♪ ♪ When all has been taken ♪ ♪ And the wise have returned ♪ ♪ As the blood turns to ashes ♪ ♪ And the fires
that still burn ♪ ♪ When the days of forever ♪ ♪ Breach the ones
that will die ♪ ♪ With all that remains ♪ ♪ We'll defeat and defy ♪ ♪ But I will rise
but I will rise ♪ ♪ I will rise ♪ ♪ I will rise ♪ ♪ Like a child in the moment ♪ ♪ When all but tears
are in his eyes ♪ ♪ I will rise I will rise ♪ ♪ I will rise ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ I will rise I will rise ♪ ♪ I will rise
I will rise ♪ Hi, my name's Matthew Griswold. I'm from Minneapolis, Minnesota. I grew up in a family, in a household,
that valued music a lot. My dad was a smalltown
radio DJ when I was born, and my mom, she grew up
playing the piano and was very classically trained
throughout her life. And so music was
very available to listen to, and as I got older, I remember
music being something that, sort of to really educate me
about the world, Especially the music
of that time, John Mellencamp, Bruce Springsteen's music
of that time. So as I got older,
music then became my way of explaining things
to the world around me. A lot of songwriters I know sort
of write for the broad audience or write in hopes that
many people will like it, I always say, if I can write one person's favorite song,
I've done my job. Then aside from that,
how many other people get any appreciation out of it is
just sort of, I guess, gravy. [strumming in moderate tempo] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ I walked up to someone ♪ ♪ Who told me to live ♪ ♪ And go find a fortune ♪ ♪ But don't ever give ♪ ♪ I looked down before him ♪ ♪ And time dragged along ♪ ♪ A season of pleasure ♪ ♪ Where there's
no right or wrong ♪ ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to hear your sound ♪ ♪ It's where you go to hold
your ground ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to sooth your sin ♪ ♪ It's where you go to please
your grim ♪ ♪ Desires ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ My mind was jaded ♪ ♪ All I saw was gold ♪ ♪ There's no need
to cross check ♪ ♪ I do what I'm told ♪ ♪ I'll just turn the portrait ♪ ♪ And disarm belief ♪ ♪ With my own reluctance ♪ ♪ To keep faith on it's feet ♪ ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to hear your sound ♪ ♪ It's where you go to hold
your ground ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to sooth your sin ♪ ♪ It's where you go to please
your grim ♪ ♪ Desires ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ I woke up with someone ♪ ♪ Who told me to love ♪ ♪ I didn't feel the pleasure ♪ ♪ As I looked above ♪ ♪ Now I don't remember ♪ ♪ If I even prayed ♪ ♪ But there spoke a Godsend ♪ ♪ From my bed she laid ♪ ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to hear your sound ♪ ♪ It's where you go to hold
your ground ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to sooth your sin ♪ ♪ It's where you go to please
your grim ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to hear your sound ♪ ♪ It's where you go to hold
your ground ♪ ♪ It's where you go
to sooth your sin ♪ ♪ It's where you go to please
your grim ♪ ♪ Desires ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ My song, "Till it's Gone" was
one of the first ones that I kinda just wrote about an
emotion and not a subject. The emotion is
the subject of the song I didn't write with this idea of having some kind of
a profound statement as much as I wrote it with
trying to capture that feeling that you get just when
everything kind of feels right, and you kind of want to forever
chase that feeling or have that
as like your standard. And it was, I was in my
apartment when I wrote it, and it was a beautiful spring,
almost summer day down in Minneapolis,
and the birds were chirping and it was just perfect. And I kind of wanted to capture
that into a song and have a reference to always
be able to go back and say this is that moment, and this is
how I can appreciate it until it's gone, until
we are not here anymore, until it's not available to us
to feel that way anymore [playing in bright folk-rock
rhythm] ♪ ♪ Today my eyes are open wide ♪ ♪ Today my eyes are open so that
I can see the sunshine ♪ ♪ Dripping from the sky ♪ ♪ ♪ With them I'll believe
in all I see ♪ ♪ With them I'll have faith
in all that be ♪ ♪ Till they're gone ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ Today my hands are open wide ♪ ♪ Today my hands are open so
that I can feel the rain drops ♪ ♪ Splatter on my skin ♪ ♪ With them I'll know
all the things I've done ♪ ♪ With them I know
what I will become ♪ ♪ Till they're gone ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ Today my heart was open wide ♪ ♪ Today my heart was open ♪ So that I could feel
the kind of love ♪ ♪ I've never had before ♪ ♪ ♪ And with it I will be
a better man ♪ ♪ And with it I'll give
everything I can ♪ ♪ Till it's gone ♪ ♪ Till it's gone ♪ ♪ Till it's gone ♪ ♪ Till it's gone ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ [playing in fast-paced rhythm] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ Oh dear lord
I feel like I'm dyin' ♪ ♪ Oh dear lord won't you
point me to my grave ♪ ♪ Oh dear lord,
I feel like I'm dyin' ♪ ♪ And I ain't got no sources
sayin' my soul's been saved ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ Oh mother
your son he's been pushin' ♪ ♪ Oh mother his blood's
filled with crank ♪ ♪ Oh mother
your son he's been pushin' ♪ ♪ Like a pit stop parking
for some fuel in the tank ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ Oh dear lord
I feel like I'm dyin' ♪ ♪ Oh dear lord won't you
point me to my grave ♪ ♪ Oh dear lord,
I feel like I'm dyin' ♪ ♪ I ain't got no sources sayin'
my soul's been saved ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ Oh father
your daughter's been cookin' ♪ ♪ Oh father she's
fixin' to fry ♪ ♪ Oh father
your daughter's been cookin' ♪ ♪ And chicken flippin'
down by the east riverside ♪ ♪ And chicken flippin' down
by the east riverside ♪ ♪ And chicken flippin'
down by the east riverside ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ "Everyday War"
was one that I wrote while I was recently back
from the military. I was in the Army for 5 years
and fought in the Iraq War, and during the first year
that I'd gotten out I went through my own period of some pretty deep struggles,
struggled with depression, and even at one time
thoughts of suicide. And this was all happening
at a time where the amount of suicides happening in the military
and recent veterans was at the highest
it had ever been in history. And I remember reading that
and just thinking, wow, there's definitely something
that needs to be said here. And so when I approached
"Everyday War," I tried to not get
to self-loathing about it. I tried to reach the broader
audience of just the general idea of mental illness
and what that can lead to. ♪ There's a war
and it's coming down on me ♪ It's a subject that I think
needs to be talked about more, and I think
it's still got that stigma of being uncomfortable
to talk about. But the more and more
that I think we do, and the more and more media
that's available that also addresses it, like
film, television, and music, I think that will make it easier
to do so in the future. So it's just
my small calling to that and my humble approach
to trying to make that as a whole little bit easier
for us to deal with. [playing softly] ♪ ♪ ♪ This old man ♪ ♪ Said "here's your life" ♪ ♪ He pressed my tongue ♪ ♪ Against his knife ♪ ♪ But now that man ♪ ♪ Has gone away ♪ ♪ His sins will pass ♪ ♪ And the truth will fade ♪ ♪ There's a war
and it's coming down on me ♪ ♪ There's a war and it's
coming down on me ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ She sits alone ♪ ♪ When the sun goes down ♪ ♪ She calls my name ♪ ♪ From across the town ♪ ♪ She runs from me ♪ ♪ To hide her pain ♪ ♪ Like she runs from God ♪ ♪ To hide her shame ♪ ♪ There's a war
and it's coming down on me ♪ ♪ There's a war and it's
coming down on me ♪ [harmonica solo] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ I could not win ♪ ♪ I could not rest ♪ ♪ I sit alone ♪ ♪ In my last breath ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ So when I signed my licensing
and publishing deal I got a chance to audition
a couple songs, and the first song that I
auditioned was the song, "She is the Rose." ♪ She is the rose ♪ ♪ The reason the rain ♪ ♪ Will fall down
and wash away ♪ The pain ♪ The reason I had done that, I was 27 years old when I wrote
that, and it was kind of my, the time where I was maybe
making some changes in my life and trying to be healthier
going forward. It was kind of my apology to
people who I've maybe hurt, not necessarily
intended to hurt, but people do get hurt when
you're not doing well. So it was kind of
my apology to that. I had been writing songs
for about 10 years, but when I got done
with that one– I wrote it at the piano,
and I hit the last chord, and I said, this is the first
song I have ever written where I walked away
thinking this is a real song. So I knew then, I had kind of
a standard for myself, something to look forward to
in the future. And when I auditioned for
the licensing deal, that was the first song I sent, and they
gave me an open-ended deal. So now I, what's called a staff
writer, staff music maker to some degree where I can
contribute anything I want after that, which was
a huge opportunity. [playing softly in slow tempo] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ A seed had been sewn ♪ ♪ ♪ And planted with dreams ♪ ♪ It blossomed a beauty
that's never been seen ♪ ♪ ♪ It grew in a field ♪ ♪ A rose not to take ♪ ♪ But I selfishly reaped it
for my own sake ♪ ♪ My great mistake ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ She is the rose ♪ ♪ The reason the rain ♪ ♪ Will fall down
and wash away the pain ♪ ♪ ♪ In a world full of fear ♪ ♪ And seas full of lies ♪ ♪ In a garden of hate
where you and I ♪ ♪ Are just flesh and bone ♪ ♪ The rose stands alone ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ [playing in bright rhythm] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ Hard times
they come and they go ♪ ♪ Like a sparrow in a field
with no cane ♪ ♪ When the wind starts to blow
it's got nothing to show ♪ ♪ As it can't recognize
its own name ♪ ♪ ♪ So when you feel like
you're fading away ♪ ♪ When you like
you're fading away ♪ ♪ Just remove your disguise
and look in his eyes ♪ ♪ And you won't recognize
your own pain ♪ ♪ ♪ Even bliss
cannot breach its own end ♪ ♪ Like a sea in the rapture
foretold ♪ ♪ Those seas will mend
and the waves will ascend ♪ ♪ As heaven and hell
take control ♪ ♪ ♪ So when you feel like
you're fading away ♪ ♪ When you
feel like you're fading away ♪ ♪ Just remove your disguise,
and look in his eyes ♪ ♪ And you won't recognize
your own pain ♪ ♪ No you won't recognize
your own pain ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ If a fire could fade
its own light ♪ ♪ Like a beach 'neath
the wild winter moon ♪ ♪ Not a soul in its sight
or a breath in its night ♪ ♪ Just a kid that was killed
at high noon ♪ ♪ ♪ So when you feel like
you're fading away ♪ ♪ When you
feel like you're fading away ♪ ♪ Just remove your disguise,
and look in his eyes ♪ ♪ 'Cause the dead
cannot recognize pain ♪ ♪ No the dead
cannot recognize pain ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ (woman) "Prairie Musicians"
is made possible by the Minnesota Arts
and Cultural Heritage Fund, and the citizens of Minnesota, and by the members
of Prairie Public.

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