Dear Dave Matthews,
How’s it going? You don’t know me, but I felt I needed to write and explain something.
We’re about to move to Canada. I’ve never been there before. If you’d have told me five years ago that I’d move to Toronto in 2015 I’d have laughed in your face. Especially with no employment or income and two small children. It’s a crazy notion.
Aside from wondering who the hell I am, you’re probably wanting to know why we’re embarking on this insane adventure. Let me explain.
I’m Australian but I don’t feel very Aussie. I like winter, snow, ice skating, open fires, flushed cheeks, bright cold skies. I like snow at Christmas. I ikea deciduous trees and grass that stays green, great service in restaurants and an overabundance of celebration at various festive times during the year.
I also like your music, Dave, even though I’m pretty sure you’re high during most of your performances. It doesn’t detract. It kind of adds to it actually.
The first time I heard of you was about 15 years ago. I had a serendipitous connection with a guy I met through uni and early on in what would become a six-year relationship he played Crash for me. Just that one song. Over and over. It’s a great song and I very quickly came to love it. But I never got to listen to the whole album. Often he’d play a bit of Satellite, I think it’s called, and I heard those opening bars of Too Much so many times. Da da daaaaa! Never heard the whole song.
Fast forward about ten years, I was introduced to you again, this time by someone with musical taste as well as talent. My husband. I don’t really know how I came to love your music but I’m guessing it was him being pushy and just playing it all the time after having rudely dismissed whatever I was listening to at the time. Just playing entire albums no matter whether you liked them or not. Or playing Metallica. We also saw you live somewhere in London in about 2009 I think. That was the night Michael Jackson died. Totally irrelevant, but anyway, you were off your head on some kind of substance but still playing like a demon!
One evening some months ago my husband was out with friends having a few drinks and when he came home he put on some music and we danced. He wanted to dance with me. The songs he chose were not played at our wedding or when we first met. They were two of your songs. The first was Crush, something I’d previously have wrinkled my nose at having heard the first few plucky sax notes, branding it elevator music. It’s actually an extraordinarily sensual song, and the way you deliver the lyrics really give it depth. It’s kinda us. And the second song my husband played that night was #41. According to Wikipedia you wrote it following the messy dissolution of your relationship with a former manager, when he started claiming ownership of stuff you wrote. I can’t explain why but this song just connects us.
These two songs together mixed with snow in winter at Christmas and the rejection of various other northern hemisphere destinations mean Canada is right for us. Or at least it is a good option to explore.
I still can’t really explain why your music has been such an influence in our decision to check out Canada (you’re from California or something, right?) but somehow when my husband and I listen to your music we just look at each other and know. It evokes a feeling in both of us. There’s comfort, familiarity, excitement, home. Suffice it to say, we’ll never be able to listen to your awesome music again if we end up hating Canada. And that would be a shame.
Edit: bloody hell, look at what popped up when I googled “Dave Mattews winter snow Canada tree”. What an amazing work of art! If we get our Canadian citizenship I’m totally getting this tattooed!