Jeff Raab played a great Marcellus Washburn when I was in The Music Man ten years ago. We did over 50 performances together and became great friends.
Jeff joined Beth and I for a writing session and the result was “Wide Open Road,” the 5th track on the album. It’s one of my most-requested songs and for good reason; it hangs together lyrically and melodically like a good country rock tune from any era, but especially my favorite time in music – the mid 70s.
Given Beth & Scott’s Adventure, it was a prescient composition, for sure! I didn’t know then that we’d sell the house and hit the road in search of a new horizon. But we certainly have!
When we penned the song, I think the open road was a metaphor for restlessness, for creative exploration and for continued growth and learning. The three of us can laugh for hours while simultaneously sharing our angst and fears. It’s actually fertile ground for songs.
And I’m guessing there was some sense that this was Steph Bierko’s song. Our daughter, Steph, is the real wandering minstrel in the family, the great influencer who taught me that it’s okay to leave behind one place in search of the next one. And, importantly, that it can be done with preparation, intelligence, curiosity and hope. (Or a “Let go, Let God”willingness, too.)
Wide Open Road features Beth on lead vocals with Regina, Jeff and I in the background. It’s a stirring song for me and I’m glad to sing, play and live it every day!