Dispatch #3: Buffalo. Brave.

Wrapping up my three days in Buffalo with a birthday night concert: Cowboy Junkies performing in full their first album, "The Trinity Session." A lasting favorite of mine. A band I've continued to have a soft spot for and enjoy, while also acknowledging (and I'm far from alone in this) that they've never matched the fire of that first album.

cowboy junkies.jpg

So I was interested last night to see the band's singer, Margo Timmins, express some trepidation about performing those songs again after all these years. I wondered what that was about - could have been a lot of things. After an opening set of their newer work, they took a break, then came back out and she said something that will continue to endear her/them to me. She said they were going to play The Trinity Session in full, and then she said, a little sheepish, "I was younger – and braver – then."

I get it. The emotional space of that album is raw and pure. It's what I – and so many others – have loved about it. And I can see not wanting to go there. I respect her for being willing to say it. 

I don't know if that's true for her. And I don't know if that's a good or a bad thing in her life, or just a fact. 

But here's something I do know, about me: I'm getting braver as I get older. Finally comfortable enough in my own skin to risk being me. Singing my song. And I like it. I like feeling free to do that. I like the connection it allows me to make with people. I even like the moments when it makes me fall flat, embarrassed and naked in some awkward public moment. Because it feels good to be me. And I want to keep getting braver. Taking risks. Because for me, it means I'm fully alive in the moments of my life.

So today, as I drive, I'm going to listen to Cowboy Junkies sing "Working on a Building," and be glad for this whole wild journey, and the concert last night, and the students I met this week at SUNY Fredonia and at Medaille College in Buffalo, and everyone who came out to Talking Leaves Bookstore on Wednesday night, and I'm going to get ready to give it everything I've got in Pittsburgh tonight.