Audio Track: Throw it Away (c) 2003 (Bendall / Williams)
I wrote this one in my head while driving back from a live gig. My mate Terry Chambers and I had been to see the alt-rock band Wilco, in an excellent hall within the University of Glasgow, Scotland. The gig was absolutely brilliant, I love smaller venues, as you really get close to the band and it brings their set alive. Terry and I were massive fans, having travelled widely to watch both Wilco and their Americano-genre friends The Jayhawks. If you are interested, check out interrelated bands from this stable: Gram Parsons, Flying Burrito Brothers, Uncle Tupelo, Golden Smog, and Son Volt.
Terry had been a roadie in the late 1960s/70s and had seen all the great rock bands live in and around London. He was a really interesting guy, who loved music. Terry’s ear for live mixes was spot-on and he knew a good performance when he heard it, flip-side was he was not at all tolerant of shoddy musicians. I once asked him if he had a favourite live band from his days hanging out with the greats, without hesitation he said ‘the Moody Blues’, an underrated band. That particular night in Glasgow, Jeff Tweedy’s Chicago-based band Wilco excelled in every respect, a blistering set. Terry was happy, he told me the gig was on a par with the Moody Blues set from the early 1970s. It was an inspirational journey back to Galashiels and Selkirk, Scottish Borders.
Throw it Away is a road song. I had a 135 mile daily commute, driving up and down the A7 road between Selkirk and Edinburgh. It’s my personal reflection on life and relationships. Written during the same summer as The Strangers, I realise I was trying to come to terms with breaking up a relationship that had soured. It is not about blame, most people enter into any relationship with good intentions and to do their best. I am always quite sad when I hear about friends’ relationships dissolving, as regardless of the circumstances, it is more often a very difficult time for at least one of the individuals involved.
The song structure is basic; no layers of sound here. This is because it was written, played and recorded very quickly. I have no idea how or why Dave Williams ended up singing it, think he liked it and I remember I had considered not recording it. Dave is credited as co-writer. Just realised I have never played this song since. I might re-record it!
‘I will cast aside my foolish pride.’ This line still upsets me, as it is about me realising I had failed in a relationship, but was too stubborn, embarrassed and disappointed to face that fact. ‘You’re the queen of my demented heart.’ I’m quite taken by that line today. I’m stating that people you are close to can make you angry, sad and elated, within a few heartbeats.
In your own life, I don’t know if you should throw it away or not. So, if you ‘Can’t find out which way to go… take some time to make a start, or fall apart!’ Your choice. Meantime, hope you can enjoy this track. Peace and love.
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