The Fight Within

Tom and Alan Sanderson – The Fight Within | download mp3

The Fight Within
lyrics by Lori Sanderson, music by Tom Sanderson

Acceptance brings peace of mind
Acceptance brings strength within
Acceptance means to submit
Acceptance means to give in

To accept or not to accept?
The pain I feel deep within –
from headaches, to neck and jaw
to losses of ma and pa

Acceptance brings peace of mind
Acceptance brings strength within
Acceptance means to submit
Acceptance means to give in

To accept or not to accept?
The pain I feel deep within
To not have a child of our own
and rear it well beyond grown

Acceptance brings peace of mind
Acceptance brings strength within
Acceptance means to submit
Acceptance means to give in

To accept or not to accept?
The pain I feel deep within
to allow my health to escape
and my weight to dominate

Acceptance brings peace of mind
Acceptance brings strength within
Acceptance means to submit
Acceptance means to give in

I end with freedom and strength
to accept these things with thanks

Tom Sanderson: vocals, piano, strings, organ, drums
Alan Sanderson: guitars, bass, backing vocals

Tom’s Notes

Lori writes lyrics that are linear and candid. I take some courage from her heart-on-the-sleeve approach to writing words. These words describe personal struggles and her desired reaction of acceptance. Quite a good message. She asked me to write music. I will say it is a challenge to build music around a very specific narritive. Sometimes I feel successful and other times miss the mark.

I started with piano. Normally I write music first and then words, so for Lori’s lyrics I have found it easiest for me to read them over, get a good feel and set them aside, matching them up after I have an idea. I think I was trying for a alternative/pop piano-based song. I suppose it was unconscious but the percussion started taking a march rhythm and later the organ continued in this thought by playing a bit of a fanfare towards the end of the song. As for harmony, the music rarely uses the third note in the major chord so it seems a bit unresolved. I’ve reflected since and find it rather fitting to the words in the chorus about acceptance. To me the point of acceptance seems like a real-world victory (as opposed to a fairly-tale or movie adaptation) where the battles are won after much toil, pain and sacrifice – so the battle’s end is a bittersweet one. And it’s a work in progress.

Alan’s contributions to this song are massive. He restructured my musical redundancies and made sure the listeners’ ears don’t get bored, which I don’t think they will. In addition to his editing, he contributed the backing vocal choir, the guitars and the bass. And his mixing is quite good.

Alan’s Notes

I feel very honored to be a part of this production.

Tom sent me his tracks for this song on August 1, and it took me nearly 5 months to finish my part. I spent most of that time feeling guilty to leave Tom and Lori hanging. They had shared some really intense and personal struggles with me, and I was just … sitting on them. But I hope that the final product was worth waiting for.

It is probably fitting that the production of this track was met with some personal struggles on my part. The most significant of these struggles was a 2-week illness that hit me just after we posted the final mixdown of Love & Kindness. (My COVID-19 test came back negative twice.) The backing vocals and acoustic guitar were actually recorded in the middle of this illness, on a day that I was feeling okay and I thought I was on the mend, but the next day my fevers were back with a vengeance.

This illness really took the wind out of my sails for making music. I didn’t even go into the studio room for probably 6 weeks, even though I had recovered well enough to return to work and even to distance running. Getting this song across the finish line required me to overcome that block. Thankfully Tom was very patient with me.

I also resonate with the message of determined acceptance in the lyrics. Early this morning I visited the grave of my baby girl Evelyn, and I thought of how much I wanted to rear her “well beyond grown.” But I am grateful for my faith that our family will be together in the next life — that her death is a loss of opportunity here and now, but not the permanent loss of a relationship. Like Lori, “I end with freedom and strength to accept these things with thanks.”

I did my recording, mixing and mastering using Ardour 5.12 on Linux Mint 19. Plugins included Linux Studio Plugins compressors and limiters, Dragonfly Reverb, Guitarix amplifier and cabinet, FatFrog high gain amplifier, and the Calf Studio Gear 5-band EQ. Guitars were a Takamine G-330 acoustic, Ibanez AM53 semi-hollow body electric, and an Austin Bazaar electric bass.

tomasand

One thought on “The Fight Within

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s