Saturday, October 15, 2005

A Piece Of The Prize

A warm welcome to everyone who may be new to FRANKtalk.

I am pleased and grateful to have you aboard. Hope you enjoy my site and that you will feel free to participate in expressing your thoughts and opinions regarding any issue or topic of interest you may wish to convey. My email address is posted clearly at this page.

Your thoughts and opinions are welcomed and appreciated.

Your confidence and privacy will always be respected and honored.

Now I realize that I am unknown to most of you, but even to those few who may have heard my name in professional songwriting circles, the identifying details may be a bit fuzzy and remote. So, with all apologies and due respect towards the memory of the late, great, Vice-Admiral James B. Stockdale, who, when beginning his TV debate speech in 1992 as the vice-presidential running mate of third party independent presidential candidate, Ross Perot, spoke the immortal words... "who am I...why am I here...?" ...I offer this introduction.

I am a professional songwriter and music artist with a family background in journalism who enjoys pro songwriting, music, intellectual conservative philosophy, politics, Bob Dylan and relating my stories and reminiscences.

This creative medium is as exciting for me as songwriting. I love it.

I hope you will too.

To learn more details, hear samples of my music and to get the full InDepth story of my life and career, I would suggest that you start at my music website and discover the later Gallery sections especially, as the full value of my music is best appreciated when one understands the true nature of the journey that has been my path in life and music business.

While in the Nashville Gallery, you will find within that section a passage entitled "A Piece Of The Prize". This chapter, more so than any other of my life and pursuits, most aptly captures the essence of my underlying philosophy towards life, honor, integrity, sacrifice, dignity, principles and the pursuit of all objectives, which is based on foundations of true spiritual priorities.

Some might look at my career profile today and say...hey, wait a minute. You didn't make it big. You seemed to have had many opportunities to succeed far beyond your story of obscurity. Your talent and music bespeaks the highest levels of opportunity and potential. What happened?

Well, there are several reasons why I am not an American Idol, artistic and otherwise, but to understand the crux of why my path has wound this way and not that way over the years, one has firstly to get this impression of mind. Major level music business decision makers, attorneys, agents, managers, and the like, do not necessarily value the same things in life as I do.

My choices in life and in the music business have always revolved around a relative few important issues. In no particular order, those things would be artistic and spiritual integrity, sound business judgment, long term focus and respect for my song copyrights.

The long and short of it is simply that I made choices which didn't always comport with demands to offer my blood & soul to a voracious industry willing to use my creative talents and intellectual property rights towards their various multi-faceted promotional purposes.

There were important considerations beyond short-term gain.

I took the road less traveled.

Lessons on this road have been rich and varied. Road Skolar Music.

However, in terms of success in life...well, success in life is exactly what my choices have led to even if I've not had many big hit records to speak of over the years. But there's reasons why that was the case too. I've been happily married to my wife Linda for 27 years. We've raised two fine, smart sons who are well on their way in their own lives. I am a sober survivor of 21 years from a ship that was sinking before it left port. We own a new home. I write songs and make music. I love to cook and spend quality time with my wife. We have fun. I read and participate fully in the realm of intellectual pursuits that I enjoy and yes, I love Bob Dylan songs.

You tell me, does that sound like a failed life to you...? I know major people in the business of music who cannot count even one of riches I enjoy in my life as their accomplishment. So who succeeded...and who really didn't..? Any music business "success" that I enjoyed personally didn't destroy me in the end, but it has destroyed and killed many, many famous people whose lives became empty and intolerable at the top of the charts because, for one reason or another, fame, money and false values consumed them.

On the other hand, I was rooted in love, family, true confidence in my abilities and sense of belonging. The rat race was great while I was in it on my own terms and of course, my talent is appreciated and highly acclaimed, as were my achievements. My personal aspirations were nothing short of top of the heap and everybody knew I had the goods and the increasing opportunity to make it.

But, I wanted other things. My choices dictated my trajectory in the music business. No one else's star determined my path.

My goals were very personal.

The mere disposition towards this blog and my persona as FRANKtalk, itself a real manifestation of what I've always sought to accomplish in my creative life in terms of my ability and skill to reach out to other people from my true heart. This is the voice of Frank Trainor. Husband, father, artist, songwriter, thinker, appreciator of others light...and now the blogger.


My wish for all the big time lawyers, managers, publishers, record labels and agents, many of whom I have great respect for even today, is for them all to know's been worth it all to me to have lived my vision in this way. I'm sorry we didn't all make out like champs and pocket millions, but there were always other principles and priorities involved.

Just listen to my latest CD "Grace & Gravity". It's all there.

Grace & Gravity reflects my own vision for this current album as a songwriter/artist as well as my goals for it's production.

The opening track The Taste Of Your Own Poison says it all.

As Bob Dylan put it in Most Likely You Go Your Way [and I'll Go Mine]

I'm gonna let you pass
And I'll go last
Then time will tell just who fell
And who's been left behind.
When you go your way and I go mine.

A piece of the prize in the major realms of the music business was always sufficient unto my purposes at the best of times. It's fun competing! At the worst of it, it could have killed me.

But, I've got it all in my personal and professional life.

My cup runneth over.

And you, dear reader [and hopefully Frank Trainor Music listener], add immeasurably to my spiritual wealth. It is my sincere hope that I may add to yours as well.

Thanks for making FRANKtalk a part of your own journey.

Who knows what treasures will reveal themselves to us.

It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry

Speaking of Bob Dylan, which I do nearly every chance I highest personal recommendation once again to check out my favorite Bob Dylan site of solid wisdom and intellectual eloquence at RWB has been posting some really great stuff lately [as usual] and is more than worth the visit for his insights and persuasive conservative arguments across the widest spectrum. FRANKtalk is linked at RWB as well which I am deeply grateful for as a Bob Dylan admirer firstly, but also as a conservative blogger.

Now the wintertime is coming and the windows are filled with frost...I want to tell everybody that my little memory episode of personal Road Skolar reminiscences this day is of a long ago journey by slow moving train through the tracked wilds of Eastern Upper Canada in the very early 1970's. I was all of 18 and traveling alone with my wonder filled thoughts and expectations of Glory while toting my brand new 1971 Martin D28 when, across the aisle in her own moving window world, a very refined and elderly lady spoke to me and asked me how long I'd been playing guitar. We struck up a very friendly conversation and she eventually told me that indeed, her son too was a musician. That made me like her even more, so I asked her to tell me about him. She obviously was thrilled to relate to me that her son was in a very well known group at the time that I may have even heard of....I wasn't really sure, so she told me that his name was Richard and he played the piano and sang.

Her name was Mrs. Manuel.

Her son, as it turned out, was in a little group called The Band.

For the next hours Mrs. Manuel regaled me with her stories of the boys getting started and their Bob Dylan adventures, life on the road, working with Ronnie Hawkins and of course their eventual success as The Band. Mrs. Manuel was a very fine lady. I was just a kid on my way to Toronto. The towns flew eyelids eventually closed...and my dream began in earnest.

That dream lives on today...right now....right here at FRANKtalk.

Goodnight Mrs. Manuel...

I'll let you be in my dream if I can be in your dream.

I said that...

Frank Trainor


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