If you’re reading this it means that you might care to know that I am Not Dead. I’ve been pretty quiet the last year and a half besides the occasional update on some of the soundtrack work that I have been doing. The catalyst for the silence has been a break from touring AND most live performances. So there hasn’t been that much to talk about. I HAD to take a break because my health has been frustratingly disagreeable with the touring lifestyle. I have actually dealt with this progressive pain and attack on my mobility for the better part of 10 years, but in 2014 it left me in tears, lying on a hotel bed after a performance. I was scared that I was dying with some kind of internal rupture. I was unable to use one of my legs and had about 25% mobility. Since then I have had to re approach most of my life and withdraw from much of what I love.
I haven’t wanted to be that guy, you know… ” Please welcome to the stage, LUKE DOWNER”… Some of you know what I’m talking about . there are enough victims in the world. I don’t want to be one. I was diagnosed with radiculpathy (chronic nerve damage), herniated discs, degenerative discs and we’re still searching for the cause of some of the worst pain. It’s left a lot of time for soul searching, self medication, depression, dr. visits, secretive self pity, early mornings, late nights and the daily battle to stay positive. there have been weeks that I could not walk down the stairs, and I could not sit in the studio chair or strap on a guitar, because of the pain and if I am honest overwhelming sadness because of the condition I am in. Needless to say I am ready for whatever it takes to be free of all of this pain. Nerve damage and chronic pain that doesn’t affect motor skills is very difficult to empathize with because minus the limp that I have carried the last few months there is not much physical representation for its affects. When I am out and about its a good day.
I am not meaning to tell this as a sob story. I am not looking for pity. I think I wanted to communicate this because its cheaper than therapy 😉 and I needed to bring some accountability to making music. I still have hopes and plans and dreams. I am still chasing down a vision I had as a young man. I’m still making rock and roll. And I believe that the records that I am working on will be the greatest of my career, because they will be soaked with honesty and truth. There is a huge distinction. Honesty is the invitation and truth is activation. Figure that one out. I am also sharing this because as an artist the only way I know how to be an artist and make music is to be honest and to share the good and the bad. As I have kept silent with a lot of this, its left me uninspired and frustrated. So I am going to start sharing; weekly.
From this IS going to come the best work. And when I use the words “best” and ‘work’, I think it is important to understand how I mean them. The reason I am an artist is because I want to give life, healing, truth, and hope to others. So I am believing that the ‘best’ work that is ahead of me means that the greatest level of side effects are to be had. That is what I care the most deeply about.
This whole situation has made me ever aware of the fact that I have the best family; i.e. the best wife. Watching my wife pick up the slack has been both awe inspiring and heartbreaking. She is a diamond like no other. That is why I am determined to get better. To become whole, in body mind and spirit. I have to get better. And for me, there is healing in making music.
All that to say that I am determined to release this new record. I am over the moon excited about this one and I can’t wait to finish it and show you. This one will include more risks and more musicians than anything that I have done. My brother and long time beast of a drummer, Zach laid down some sick beats, and an incredible violin player Jesse Maw elevated some of these songs. We shot a music video earlier this year for one of the tracks “For God’s Sake” and will be releasing later this year.
there is more that I could say, but I’ll save it for next time. I am going to work on some music!
I’d love to hear from you, so please comment below. Talk to you next week.
Thanks for listening.
love and gratitude!