Better Learn to Climb in @CBCMusic #Searchlight Competition

Here are the answers to the questions asked along with my song submission:

- Tell us something about you that would surprise us! When I was 14, I wrote my first song, slipped it into "that girl's" locker, swore I'd never wear a tie or work for the government. It won't surprise you that none of those things worked out except for the songwriting... I stopped counting at 700. Perhaps the most surprising part of that is my daughter wrote 50 of her own before her 14th birthday. She should be in this comp.
- What do you do when you’re not playing music? Drive my three kids to and from arenas in the winter and playing fields in the summer. What is "playing music"...?
- When did you start performing - and what made you want to pursue it? Writing that first song made me want to pursue more. A lot of quiet campfires that were missing something, I mean, campfires are great but this was the late 70s, early 80s and I don't think Smores had been invented yet so it got pretty boring once the truth or dare ran out. Couldn't bring my drum set out in the boonies for fear they'd wind up as kindling so I learned to pluck out a few chords on guitar and, although I never believed in myself, that guitar still hangs in my studio never once coming close to becoming a source of heat. Only those on the other side of the fire believed in me. They wanted me to pursue it a lot more than I did.
- What inspired the song you submitted to Searchlight? The struggle. Everyone's got that proverbial mountain. Some choose to set up their video games in the foothills, others freeze to death 10 feet beyond base camp. I chose to head back to the Ski Lodge and write about climbing while sipping my favourite Cab Sauv. Now, I'm not saying any of those are better than the other but at least I can still feel my fingertips, eh?

- Is it based on something from your life? I was driving home from my above-mentioned Government job lamenting to my passenger how much work I had... in fact "a mountain of work" were my exact words and they simply shot back "Better learn to climb!". I knew right then that I wanted to figure out a way to immortalise that phrase. But the songs I write that are born out of one-liners have kind of anticlimactic back stories because I just take off in a figurative direction that has nothing to do with the source, or real life for that matter. Case in point, I don't ski (so I didn't write it in a ski lodge) and I've spent most of my life in the Ottawa *Valley*.
- Is there a surprising story behind how you recorded this track? I'm not sure it's all that surprising but I'm no virtuoso, and honestly, the guitar playing and solo are by no means intricate, but I've yet to find a guitarist who can replicate it exactly. Possibly the fact I'm self-taught and use unorthodox progressions? I don't know, but the result is I play everything on this track except the first instrument I ever played, the drums.
- How did you hear about Searchlight? You sent me a very touching, personal eMail. (I framed it)
- Do you have any local shows coming up? None. I retired for one (1) year in 2010 and my three kids decided to make all their competitive teams. Nuff said.
- How do you pronounce your name? Luc (as in Luke from Star Wars) Normand as if you're English
   - phonetically:  [look nör-muh nd]
   - what it rhymes with:
      - Luke the Puke (brings back fond schoolyard memories)
      - Norm (like the guy from Cheers)
      - and (like the "and" at the end of "England")
You can participate by voting here:

Leave a comment