I flew back to Michigan this morning, in part to surprise my sister Stephanie.  Her sister-in-law Becky Kowatch gets married tomorrow, and about a year ago Becky asked me if I would sing at her wedding.  At the time I told her that I would love to, but I that rarely know my schedule very far in advance or even what part of the country I may be in.  When I set the dates for this project, I knew coming home this weekend would be possible but perhaps a little hectic.  Yesterday I finished editing projections for “It’s Okay to Break” and then shot footage for the song about Chris Grant at the Nederlander Theater, where he currently understudies Johnny Cash in the Broadway musical Million Dollar Quartet.  Unbeknownst to me when I wrote it, his song shares a title with an early Sean Connery James Bond film, You Only Live Twice.  So Mike and I met Chris at the theater and shot footage of him running up and down the fire escape, kicking open doors, and looking pensive in a black suit and sunglasses.  Basically, we shot a mock opening sequence to a James Bond film, which will accompany his song.  I went home and packed (carefully placing my nice black suit into a backpack, which will need some ironing before tomorrow), and then got up this morning at 5:30am to get myself to LaGuardia.

(High school lunch table at St. Johns; I’m the guy with too much gel in his hair)

I met my niece Audrey for this first time this afternoon.  She’s a little more than 3 months old and adorable, with brown hair and brown eyes; she will be very attentive and serious, and then suddenly break into the biggest smile I have ever seen on a child that small.  The wedding is not far from my parents home near St. Johns, so my sister and the kids are staying here as well for the weekend.  Eva walked around with a plastic storage container on her head and said she was an astronaut.  I read Leo a storybook about firetrucks.  Having talked on Skype regularly since last seeing them at Christmas, they weren’t as shy around me as they usually are when I first get back.  My dad is out mowing the lawn on his John Deere riding lawn mower right now, and all three kids are taking naps, leaving me a little time to write.

Michigan is usually a blue state (the influence of unions is strong) but conservative values are also important.  I drove past cornfields on my way back from the airport, and my parents still live on the corner of two dirt roads.  So it seems fitting to share with you another edited interview, or actually an edit of several interviews.  “Right Foot to Red Circle” is about my group of friends from high school; four of them were able to put themselves on camera across the country and send the interview footage to me in New York.  Now that I’m back in Michigan, they’ve been on my mind again.  Below you should find a link to the multimedia portrait of Chad and Kari Rehmann, John Whitlock, and Alana Weingartz that will accompany their song in performance.