Look For Hope 

    I wrote the song "Look For Hope" the summer of 2004. It is a song that is hard to describe or even explain. I was thinking about the events that took place after September 11, 2001. I remember that day so clearly. I lived in Hilliard just outside of Columbus, OH at that time. I was driving up Broad St. and the news of the first airplane hitting the Trade Center in New York came on the radio. They thought that maybe it was an accident. I went home and turned on my television. At that moment the second airplane hit the Trade Center. I watched the live broadcast for several hours.
    Maybe I was in shock but I decided to go ahead with my day. I went back up Broad St. towards downtown Columbus. When I got downtown, they had it all blocked off with National Guard soldiers with guns. I turned back around and then got on I-70 to go to the store where I was teaching at the time. The road was bare with no cars hardly at all. The sky was bare with no planes or helicopters. I got to my work place which was open but none of my students came in that night. I was trying to pretend like nothing was wrong, but I also had a lot of things wrong with my life at that time and that was how I dealt with it.
I got home and saw the news about the other terrorist attack on the Pentagon and the attempt to attack the White House. I cried myself to sleep that night. It changed my life that day and I decided to move back to Dayton, OH where I had left so many of my own problems behind me.
    There was a shift in the way things were in this country that day, some for the better and some for the worst. But, more than anything, it seemed as if people lost their hope and became distant from each other. Politics became more segregated and divided. It used to be us - the people, and them - the politicians. We all took sides but when it came down to it we were one people and now that is gone. It died with all those victims on September 11, 2001. It died inside me that day.
    That is why I had to write Look For Hope. I have no idea where the chords came from and to this day I don't quite understand how it is that they work together. I thought about the way I, and my country had become and it poured out of me like water onto the ground. I was a conduit for this message and it poured out of my guitar and into the air. I immediately got out my cassette recorder and recorded the song. It was about 95% complete. I got some new ideas from my friend David Cousino for some of the chords and another friend, Jeff Hufnagel, helped me edit the melody. I then wrote the end part of the song.
    It is by far the most complicated song I have ever written. I am so blessed by this song coming through me. I think I now know what the great masters such as Bach and Beethoven felt all the time - truly blessed by God to be the vessel.
    I met Peter Thomas the Cellist around the time that I recorded Look For Hope. He was always practicing after hours at McCutcheon's Music where I teach. He asked to see some of my music and he played Look For Hope for me on his cello. I immediately asked Peter to play the melody in unison with my guitar on the recording. The cello along with the guitar really made this track sound great. That along with the extra percussion that Jim Leslie overdubbed, the wonderful piano of Jeff Hufnagel, John Toedtman's fretless bass, and David Ferrara's great rhythm guitar made Look For Hope magical.
    By far this is the song that I am most proud of. I want to record Look For Hope again in the future with the guitar featured more on it, but this is a great recording that I have of it for now. I hope that you enjoy listening to it!