When it comes to a dream …
You’ve gotta go for it!
If only to prevent a fat dose of regret.
That’s what I love about the protagonist of this tale. He goes for it all the way, even when the cards are down. Even better, he is completely self aware of his situation at the end. As for the musical influences on this song? Probably Bob Dylan’s Lily Rosemary and the King of Hearts from the album Blood on the Tracks resonates the most. Side note: I’ll ever forget being a teenager and working for a construction crew called Wayne Carter Construction when that Bob Dylan song started playing on the radio. It must have been an inside joke of the DJ. Whatever the case, my brother was in seventh heaven, and everyone else on the crew was in excruciating pain. Would the song ever end? What’s amazing is how complex and intricate a story it tells. I’m not sure if Wrong Side of a Dream lives up to the Dylan standard, but in its own way it tells a story of love and remorse and ultimately a belief in the dream, whether it succeeds or fails.
How did I write this song? It came to me very quickly. To be honest I didn’t think it through. At the time of its composition I was thinking of my father, but more and more over the years I think it applies equally to me. Whereas before I felt like I was telling a third person story, today it feels more like a first person account.
What’s your favorite part of the song? Probably the the second stanza when the sheriff/boss enters the scene. It’s clear that he can be taken out, but others will replace his boots – so what’s the point? The ending is also very intense as it documents the protagonists resolution with his failure, which in itself is a sort of success of self awarenss.
Anything else? There is a backstory between the protagonist and his love interest that is only loosely explained. What’s clear is that there was a time when he was playing with a stronger hand. No longer. To win her over will require a monumental change in his luck. Maybe too big, not that he doesn’t try.
Final Thoughts on the Song?
I like the pacing. It happens very quickly, as if it’s the protagonists last gasp. He goes for it and because of that, I don’t think he’s disappointed in the result.