Metro Echo

Sometime back, lost and aimless in Paris and not in too big a hurry to go anywhere other then the nearest cafe, I was descending into the Metro when I heard a frantically strummed guitar echoing off the walls and gaining in volume. As I was walking down the stairs the guy with the guitar was running up, still strumming and not missing a beat. He seemed to be a in a hell of a rush.

Then I saw why; on his heels and gaining fast was a gendarme in hot pursuit. This puzzled me; wasn't busking legal in Paris? I know some folks have been fined from time to time (actually I didn't know that then) but there seemed no reason to chase somebody who was so busy playing that they couldn't be bothered to stop mid-song even in the face of the law. Obviously there was some sort of back story to this little bit of drama and I have speculated on it for years now. I have also found myself admiring, in a sideways sort of way, this crazed individual who, either defiantly or obsessively, would not stop playing.

Which is why, after a lifetime of playing and singing as Gary Davis, I found the moniker Metro Echo so appealing. The problem is neither of my parents had apparently heard of the late, great Rev. Gary Davis. The Rev. was an honest to God (every pun intended, count on it) Reverend who was blind from infancy and who's amazing picking style on the guitar influenced more people then you can name. Look him up if you are unfamiliar with his work, he was one of the great blues men of his or any time and a giant among men. His music is astonishing, his life was amazing.

That said, I sound nothing like him. Indeed, while I love the blues I don't tend to play it and I spend most of my days subsisting on a steady diet of Tom Waits, Fountains of Wayne, Counting Crows, Arctic Monkeys and a whole lot of classic rock filtered through the lens of time and dissipation.

My on again, off again company of collaborators tend to do the same while lurching into such areas as jazz, ambient and world music of all types. 

The problem was, I was Gary Davis and with the legend of the Reverend looming large my ratings on Google were very small. Thus it was that I found myself feverishly entering terms, nouns, adjectives and other nonsensical brain sparks into an on line band name generator in hope of finding a better marketing tool than my actual name.

And somehow, Metro Echo popped out. That was when I remembered the guy in a hurry in Paris and it just seemed like cosmic poetry. I like to think of myself as somewhat akin to that crazy string strummer in that I just can't bring myself to quit. Hopefully he resides somewhere in the city of light a free man with a glass of good wine and a happy view of the world. Hopefully those of you who listen to my songs are of a similar mind and situation. You don't have to live in Paris, you just have to feel like you do.

So I am Metro Echo and so are some others who pop in from time to time. Let me know who you are.