Music has no boundariesMy name is Scott Johnson, and I am the owner of Northwoods Music in Superior.
By: By Scott Johnson, Superior Telegram
My name is Scott Johnson, and I am the owner of Northwoods Music in Superior.
I am a very fortunate man as each day can bring a new adventure, as I never really know who is going to walk in my front door. That was never truer than a few weeks ago. On the heels of Bob Dylan Days, one of the most interesting people entered my store. His name was Joe.
You never really know who is attracted to attend a music festival. Music reaches many of us on very different levels, from the casual listener who has a new favorite song every week to the person whose soul is stirred every time they hear their favorite artist. All walks of life. Rich and poor. Young and old. There are no boundaries.
Joe had travelled via Greyhound from Buffalo, N.Y. to Duluth just for Bob Dylan’s birthday celebration. He had mapped his travels and stays using a website for “couch-surfing.” He found his way to Duluth and to my store in Superior. Joe, was only 18, but had an old soul. He stood over six feet tall, slender with warm brown eyes and messed-up “springy” black hair. Upon his many visits over the week, he was in town we discussed his life and philosophies and sang Dylan tunes of course. I had asked if he had written many songs of his own. His reply was life changing:
“Today every one writes songs, maybe there are too many of them. Historically, people sang songs of tradition. I haven’t earned the right yet. I think you need to sing and play the songs of others first, understand them and convey them to others. Once I have done that and lived for a while, then maybe I will have earned the right to write my own songs. They will come to me and I will know when I’m ready….”
Joe bought a cool old guitar from my store to become his new “mistress” of the road; I gave him a great deal. The thought that a guitar from my store would be couch-surfing and riding Greyhound busses across the country with a true troubadour was so incredibly Americana, well what more could you ask for.
I gave Joe a self-addressed and stamped envelope for my store. He agreed to write me some day to update all of us at Northwoods Music about his travels. I’ll keep you posted.
Scott Johnson is the owner of Northwoods Music and the Northwoods Music Festival. He is the host of “Home Town Sounds” on WWJC Radio every Saturday at 3 p.m.