Recently, there's been a lot of hype about Dave and Stefan on Twitter. Fans everywhere are trying to figure out the magic formula to score a coveted response. Some “twitterers” say Dave only responds to "tweets" about sex, politics, and of course farts, while others say it's all about being online at the right moment. I wish I could say I've been immune to the craziness, but I too, have played the game and been rewarded with a single answer. I asked Dave whether he puts his bananas in a bag when he buys them at the store, and he said, “I bring a banana bag along.” Great, ecological answer. Of course, if I knew he was going to respond, I probably would have chosen a different question!
I think it's great that Dave is giving his fans a chance to communicate with him, although clearly, he cannot respond to every message. The sheer number of replies he must get on a daily basis means that some people will inevitably feel left out of the loop. And those who do hit the jackpot might experience a high that's only temporary. I'm not saying that we shouldn't have fun and participate in the twitter world, especially now that Don't Burn The Pig is on there! All I'm saying is that when all else fails, we always have the music to fall back on. After all, we don't have to rely on luck or circumstance to play our favorite songs and let the music heal our souls.
Think about your favorite version of "Bartender." Maybe it's the famous 4/7/02 version, or the more recent version from the Staples Center on Live Trax 2008, or perhaps Dave and Tim's version from Radio City Music Hall. I think most fans would agree that there's something undeniably spiritual about that song, even if you don't believe in God. When Dave starts his wailing about wanting to believe in the 4/7/02 version, or yelling that “God is in you” in the Live Trax: Volume 6 version, it's hard not to get the chills or feel emotions welling up inside. And that's not even mentioning the intensity of the Live Trax 2008 version, where "Bartender" was the opener, after which Dave announced the tragic passing of Leroi Moore (1961-2008). On that Tuesday night in August, the band amazingly got on stage just hours after the death of their beloved founding member and belted out a tribute that had to make the stars twinkle a little brighter. And that's the power of music.
We all have our stories of how the music has touched and inspired us. We've cried to "Grace is Gone," and celebrated to "Two Step." We've been brought together by this unique combination of sounds and lyrics unmatched by other musicians. We've made converts out of friends and quietly, or not so quietly, dismissed those who insist on keeping John Mayer in their playlists. And through it all, the music has been the glue that keeps us together. So next time you're feeling frustrated that Dave hasn't replied to you on Twitter, go back to basics and listen to your favorite "Bartender." Like a trusted friend, the music won't let you down.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go check Twitter.
Hayley Bauman, Psy.D.
Author of Serendipity and the Search for True Self