I'm very lucky to share my life with a wonderfully talented musician. This afternoon I took a break from writing reports for SPI to watch a DVD of a Lynryd Skynyrd concert from 1975.
Michael joined me to watch the last half and of course they ended with "Free Bird". That song has a lot of connotations for anyone who grew up in the South. But it also has a lot of memories for Michael. Since he associates it with his decision to leave Wisconsin at 19 years old in 1975 and move to Arizona alone and a whole new existence he finds it very surreal to hear now. In fact, he was so closely associated with it in high school and college that it seems his classmates consider it his "theme song".
So after the DVD finished I walked outside on the patio and Michael settled back at the piano. I expected to hear Chopin or Beethoven but suddenly I heard an incredible rendition of "Free Bird" coming from the studio. I'm sure he'll laugh at this as he always does, but he took a classic rock song and gave it a whole new level of musicianship.
Judge for yourself. This clip was done on my little digital recorder which I quickly placed on the piano since I knew he'd never play it again. It's a bit rough and I did what I could to mix out background noise and even it out. But, you'll get the idea. Don't you think I'm lucky?
By the way that photo is Michael in the Summer of 1974 in Wisconsin.