Track 10 - HIGHWAY HOME

- THE SONG BLOG -
How does the saying go? "You can take the boy out of the small town but you can't take the small town out of the boy."  There's no doubt growing up in a small town in the south of Scotland left an indelible impression on me. Even after 20 years of living more than 3,000 miles away, any time I am preparing to make the pilgrimage back to the "auld" country, the involuntary butterflies take flight at the prospect of my memories reuniting with the present day.  Maybe it's that powerful mixture of excitement in reconnecting with the people and the landscape combined with a natural anxiety around what has changed. It was during one of these times when I was scheduled to head home that the emotional reverberations began to surface as they do for me, in the form of words and music.  I had an encounter with a poignant piano idea with a working title, "Highway Home". Of course I knew what it was about and that it wouldn't be easy to write. I scheduled a writing session with Debra Alexander and we ended up having a writing session in the SOCAN headquarters in Toronto.  For me this song has a tenderness in the music and lyrics that captures something very true.  I love the way the 1st inversion chord in the chorus captures the nervous uncertainty of what's going to happen and then by the time you hit the chord on the line "travelling at the speed of love" it feels like you're already home and everything is going to be OK.


- THE RECORDING -
There was definitely some magic moving in the air when we recorded this .  It was tracked at Vyner Road in Toronto, engineered by my good friend Michael Banton-Jones who has worked on every one of my CD's.  I was recording with Gary Craig, John Dymond and Steve O 'Connor live off the floor.  I hadn't intended to keep my vocals or acoustic guitar but I guess I was inspired by the amazing players around me and managed to capture a performance that just felt not only in the pocket but in the right emotional space.  It was really quite thrilling.  On a later trip to Nashville my friend Jefferson Ross gave me the name of an amazing dobro player, Rob Ickes, who laid down some sweet tracks and it felt like the tune was on it's way home.  This was a tougher mix for Chad Carlson because of the bleed between my acoustic guitar and vocals that were captured live but he was more than up to the challenge and really brought out the heart of the recording in a lovely organic way.

Recorded at Vyner Road in Toronto. Engineered by Michael Banton-Jones.  Additional recording at Jeddart Music in Mississauga. Mixed by Chad Carlson at Hippo Sound in Nashville and Mastered by Hank Williams. Produced by Justin Abedin & David Leask.  Lead & BG Vocals & Acoustic Guitar - David Leask, Piano & Accordion - Steve O' Connor, Dobro - Rob Ickes, Electric Guitar - Justin Abedin, Drums - Gary Craig, Bass - John Dymond.

- THE LYRIC -
I can see the town on the top of the hill waiting for me
Counting down the miles while I’m looking for signs
Burned in my memory
Breathing in the sweet meadow air
Honeysuckle wind in my hair
It’s good to be

Out on the highway home
Taking back the time that’s flown
Wondering who I’ll see, going through the things I’ll say
Traveling at the speed of love
To the place I’ve been thinking of every day
Out on the highway home

Thinking ‘bout the warmth of the arms wrapping ‘round, taking me in
Smiling ‘cause I know while my heart’s catching up,
My head’s gonna spin
I’ll see my picture in a brand new frame
A little different, but still the same
That’s just me

Out on the highway home
Taking back the time that’s flown
Wondering who I’ll see, going through the things I’ll say
Traveling at the speed of love
To the place I’ve been thinking of every day
Out on the highway home

Have I lived those dreams that they dreamt for me?
Have I been gone too long?
All I know right here, right now, is that I belong

Out on the highway home
Taking back the time that’s flown
Wondering who I’ll see, going through the things I’ll say
Traveling at the speed of love
To the place I’ve been thinking of every day
Out on the highway home

I can see the town on the top of the hill waiting for me

© 2006 David Leask/Songs In The Air & Debra Alexander/Word Maven Music


 

4 comments

  • Anne Connor

    Anne Connor WeeDan Music & Blues and Roots Radio

    The capture of emotion in the vocal's and music is incredible. I really felt the sweet longing for home, the magic of the beautiful rolling hillside and the urgency to make my way back. Thank you for such a beautiful song.

    The capture of emotion in the vocal's and music is incredible. I really felt the sweet longing for home, the magic of the beautiful rolling hillside and the urgency to make my way back. Thank you for such a beautiful song.

  • Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Oakville

    I know the feeling being from Newfoundland and living here in Ontario, miss it every day, great song....cheers

    I know the feeling being from Newfoundland and living here in Ontario, miss it every day, great song....cheers

  • Angela

    Angela Burlington, Ontario

    Now my second favourite song, first being Flying Home.

    Now my second favourite song, first being Flying Home.

  • Michael O'Shea

    Michael O'Shea Mississauga

    I can see the town on the top of the hill waiting for me ! (love that line) Another beautiful song!

    I can see the town on the top of the hill waiting for me ! (love that line)

    Another beautiful song!

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