“Saying Goodbye”: The backstory
I am very fortunate to live in one of the world’s most beautiful cities. I love Vancouver for its mountains and water…the feast of green and blue that floods the eye. While I’ve lived in other places, I always end up missing the landscape here. My happiest moments are being out in it, running a trail or hiking up a mountain to chase the view.
This song came out of that love of place. It’s about all the natural beauty that can make being alive such a vividly joyful experience, if you let yourself stop to notice it. It is often in contemplating loss and death that we can measure the value of what we have most accurately. Some people only think about this when that loss has occurred, but I think that imagining the inevitable helps sharpen my appreciation for what I have while it is still with me.
I started composing these lyrics on a trail run one spring afternoon, and finished them when I got home. From the moment I started working out a melody, I knew it had to have a cello in it. A simple arrangement that was clear and slow enough to let the words and emotions sink in is what I was trying to create.
When the time came to think about filming a video for this song, I mentioned it to a friend of mine (Craig Jones) who was visiting Vancouver from London to work on various film projects. He came up with a narrative vision for it which matched my sense of the song exactly.
We did some brainstorming about the shots we wanted, and then made a list of props, locations, and people we would need. So began the whirlwind of preparation that always precedes the making of one of these videos. I do the location scouting, the casting, and the prop acquisition. When I drove out to Pitt Polder Ecological Reserve and saw the landscape, I knew I’d found the right location.
My hope is that the imagery in this video fills you with a sense of appreciation for the beauty and transience that marks our lives, and the love that makes it all that much more precious.