Dan Deacon saved my life

Dan Deacon, a guy from Baltimore, will be playing tonight at the Southern. I'll be there. I'll be dancing. I'm kind of excited about it, but in a way that makes me think it is not really going to be happening.

I discovered Dan Deacon thanks to NPR's All Songs Considered podcast. The song Get Older came on while I was at the gym, trying to build my body out of sadness. My marriage had ended a month or so before, and I was living in Albemarle County with a friend.

During my marriage, I didn't create any music. I experimented very little. I had done so a lot during my first marriage, but somehow the urge to make noise didn't really come to me when I was married the second time. The traumaI had turned inward because we had started a family and I had to work, and I felt so serious all the time. Life was no longer about having fun, and I was married to the wrong person.

Of course, I still mourned the end, because I had thought I was going to live out my days with her. I thought having children with her was going to bind us together, but it was not sustainable. The divorce was necessary for both of us to live our lives the way we deserve.

I'm now living an interesting life that's filled with so much narrative, but I still mourn not having my children in my life on a daily basis. I see them once a week, and they're happy, healthy and well.

Dan Deacon's music has appealed to me because there's so much lunacy, so much irreverence, and it reminds me of the kind of music I wanted to make. Electronic pulses, intricate drum patterns, but also a sense of inevitable disaster, and that it is okay to live in the aftermath of traumatic things.

The night I moved back into my house, I listened to another NPR podcast - a full live concert of Dan Deacon, and I heard for the first time the dances he gets his audiences to participate in. He directs everyone to do fairly silly things, all in the name of having fun and living and moving. It's infectious, and I decided that I wanted to be that kind of person - fun, living and moving.

That summer, I slowly came alive, and mourned less. I picked up a guitar from a friend, and began playing, trying to strum songs out in order to make my own sounds again. Dan Deacon inspired me to do that again, and gave me courage to try to find my own sound.

So, tonight, I'll be down at the Southern, being entertained by someone who saved my life. I'll dance, and I won't care how silly I look, and I will sweat, and I will have a fantastic time, living and moving. It will be grand, and it will close a chapter.

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