I find the whole process of songwriting to be utterly fascinating. That's probably why I keep at it. Songs come in so many ways, from so many disparate places, and at the strangest of times. I'm always interested in documenting that moment when a song happens, like catching a firefly in a jar. Of course, I rarely do document the moment, because I'd rather be playing my new song.
This is one of the only songs I know of where I took the time to document how a song happened as clearly as I could. And I'm glad I did, because I had completely forgotten the circumstances until this old note resurfaced:
"Tambourines. Fire pits. Paper boats. Snap peas. Snow flakes. Bay windows. Porch swings. Dance routines. Macaroni necklaces. High fives. Rotary phones. Flying lady bugs. Ferris wheels. Extra buttons. Crooked teeth. Bearded women. Dust drawings. Fabric stores. Turtle faces. Sleep overs. Mixed tapes. Grandmothers. Freckles. Lily pads. Windpipes. Farmers tans. Anyone willing to play the shakers in a band. The day I was so in love I mistook the nuclear power plant for a lighthouse. French kisses. The smell of a dogs paw. Thumb wars. Letters in the mailbox. The things we never ordered, but still arrived. Riding in the back of a pick up truck beneath that wanting Colorado sky. Banjo strings. Best friends. Pansies. Hummingbirds. Hail collections. Reasons to stay alive.'' - Andrea Gibson
I wrote this song in about ten minutes one morning, after reading the above, which was a stream of consciousness Facebook post written by Andrea Gibson. The chords and picking pattern naturally suggested themselves when I brought the lyrics and melody to the guitar. The bridge was preexisting and originally intended for a different song. The idea of a sky swallowing you whole is an image that first appeared in my diary during a trip through the Nevada desert six years ago, and it has since appeared in a lot of my fiction and personal narrative, but never a song. There are many states known for their big sky, but few sound as pleasing to sing as Colorado, so it stuck.
And now that you know all that backstory, here's the song, recorded just after sunrise: