by Tiamo De Vettori
For my fans
So often in my life, I have been inspired by songs and music that not only reached me, but on occasion, changed me. Yet, there are times where I have felt somewhat unfilled because I wanted to know more about the song and the artist. Why did they write it, when, and where? What?s it about and who? What secrets exist within the song? There are so many juicy intricacies within song that I have always been fascinated with. The times that I have discovered the less than obvious meaning of songs, they created deeper meaning with me and a special connection with the person who wrote it.
So now that I?m the artist and you?re the audience, I thought I?d share what my songs are really about and invite you to get know me a little better. It?s possible that we may never meet or speak, but know that you are the reason for my creative energy. I write these songs hoping that someone out there absorbs them and can turn to my music when they need a friend or companion. Whether for laughter or deep reflection, I hope my songs and performances reach your center. Better yet, I would love it if they compel you to make the world better in your own way. Thank you for being the inspiration behind the inspiration.
For those who have cheered for me and believed in me along the way, this could not be done without you. The end of this book contains notes of appreciation that I call the Tiamo ?Hall of Fame? (click on the acknowledgements box at the top of this page) for those who have impacted me and that I perhaps otherwise, couldn?t recognize in print on my ?Back to Love? CD. I hope you enjoy discovering more about the songs and the source from which they started. At the same time, I encourage you to be imaginative and create your own definitions and meanings behind my music as they relate to your life.
Note: Songs appear in album order. The last 6 songs are a part of my unreleased collection that are available via my fan club.
This song is about support and simply being there for a significant other when they really need you. While writing this song, I pictured myself on tour, alone in a hotel room, thinking of a ?hypothetical girlfriend? and the simple things we do that so beautifully and simply make us??us.? I can see myself getting gobbled up with shows and public appearances, yet never forgetting who I am and the love I share with someone?even when I?m not physically there with them.
I believe it?s possible for two people to be more connected in separate countries than two people who are sitting right in front of each other. I have felt this and remember the amazing feeling that comes with dropping everything for someone when they call for you.
When You Walked By:
Once in a great while, a woman will walk by me that has a gravitating energy that sucks me into that one moment. As if everything around me is standing still but her. Perhaps it?s her physical beauty, body language, the sound of her voice, a subtle brush of her scent, or just her vibe. Whatever it is, these moments last for seconds but feel like big chunks of time. Before you can catch your breath, she?s gone, and you?re left wondering, ?What if I said something to her? Would the rest of my life be totally different??
This song is more like a story. A brief story of an imaginative someone who runs into these timeless moments and is left always regretting not having the courage to just walk up to ?her? and introducing himself. After these ?missed opportunities? throughout his life, he finally seizes one of these rare, timeless moments, and it just flows. It comes so naturally. In time, gratefulness overcomes him and he recognizes that perhaps there?s a reason why he never had the courage to introduce himself before. Had he, he may never have met the love of his life. Perhaps this explains why there are times when we are more courageous than others?
Back to Love:
This song asks the question, ?How do we return to love?? So often, we become lost in the murky waters of self-protection, fear, jealousy, and anger that cause us to get off the path of unconditional love. It?s as if a ?love map? has been intrinsically given to us, yet after some life experience, we scribble all over it and can no longer read the print. Do babies and dogs have this problem? As humans, we are great at conditioning ourselves out of pure love and acceptance.
This song was written in both a general and specific sense. It?s also about the ?post-break up? phase that many of us have gone through. This is the period where you have convinced yourself that you?ve officially had it with dating and relationships. No more ¾ you?re through. Of course, that is until the next one comes along. So, here you are, dating again. ?This one?s an exception,? you say and now you?re really armored with layers of protection from potential ?love wounds.? Is it possible to avoid generalizing and entering new relationships without fear based attachments to the past? I believe so, and though I haven?t mastered this myself, I believe that if we ?un-train? ourselves, we can all get ?back to love.?
I remember having a huge crush on a girl in eighth grade who wouldn?t go out with me because I wasn?t as ?popular? as she would have liked. Instead of feeling down about this, I realized that it would be her loss and fantasized about her ?wanting me back? when I became older and famous. At that point, I would brush her off and remind her of her superficial decision made back in eighth grade.
From a broader perspective, I have always cared for people as if the tables were turned. This song is a reminder to love people for ?who they are? not ?what they are.? If you choose the latter, it might come back to bite you. Especially if it?s me.
While a lot of my songs are an extension of who I am, I believe this song goes furthest in explaining my core. On the outside, I have been perceived to be a lot of things; fun, carefree, jovial, entertaining, etc. Yet, underneath it all, I am carried by my ever-expanding spirituality.
I wrote this song so I could relay to people the powerful connection I feel with the universe and how indeed, I feel we have the power to create our own realties. I believe the universe to be friendly and all-providing should we consciously choose to retrieve from it?s abundance. This song is not about conversion and you won?t find religious undertones. It?s just about the energy that?s all around and how to get along with it. I believe that we are spirits having a human experience and the more we can reattach to where we came from, the more enlightenment and joy we?ll have.
Anyone who knows me well knows that I?m crazy about lighthouses. I wrote this song in Virginia in the spring of 2000 when I first started writing. At this point, I wanted to create a song that was a metaphor for the importance of allowing ourselves to be inspired. This parallels the time when I was a waiter in Virginia and my good friend, Ray, pushed me into buying a guitar and exploring my songwriting talents that I didn?t know I had.
Often times, we?re lost in darkness and we need some light to give us direction. However, sometimes this light is provided, yet we either don?t see it or we?re simply not looking. This song is about breaking out of indifference and allowing yourself to be led?so you can soon lead.
This song is a celebration of friendship. There are so many songs out there about ?falling in love? or ?breaking up?. What about a good ?buddy? song? I wrote this song for Melissa or ?Peanut? as I refer to her. Melissa is a dear friend of mine who is the younger sister of Gretchen (see ?Love in a Cafeteria?). Sometimes, I feel like ?Peanut? is the younger sibling I never had.
Often times in life, we are very connected to people who may not be ?related? to us, though it feels like they are. This is the same reason why I think of my step-dad as ?Dad?. You see, while I think that blood relation is very significant, perhaps more significant is the connectedness we have with people without labels. Is it possible to have such a good friend in your life that you consider a ?brother? or ?sister?? I believe so and I am grateful to have experienced it with a number of great friends in my life. This song?s not just for ?Peanut?, but all of ?my people? out there who have been considered family to me.
Let's Get Naked:
Having spent my summers in Italy growing up, I remember thinking about how silly it was that American?s got so worked up over nudity when it was far less alien in Europe. Nudity wasn?t thought of as something ?bad? or ?evil? in Italy, just beautiful and natural. In my case, I saw women?s bodies as perfect and pure artwork. I liked that way of thinking as it made me feel comfortable about sexuality growing up.
I don?t believe that we should be walking around in the streets naked, but I do believe that we were born that way for a reason. This song is meant to be sarcastic and to tell everyone to just relax. We all think about sex, but try cover it up. I choose to just laugh at our paranoia and be okay with our external selves. It?s our minds that lead us astray, not our bodies.
Into the Rain:
This song was written for my dear friend Sean, who is a professional speaker in the field of personal growth. During some of his speeches, he talks about a special date that he was once on. It wasn?t necessarily the person that made it special, but the breakthrough that occurred.
After exiting the movie theatre on their date, the two had walked up to a roadside curb and noticed a quaint caf across the street. Sean wanted to take her there for good post- movie conversation, yet there was one problem. It was raining and his date didn?t want to cross the street because she was worried about what other people might think about her wet hair. My friend, being the positive risk taker that he is, saw a perfect opportunity to run through the rain and create an exhilarating and memorable experience. What a great ?date moment? that would be! Yet, after a few attempts to persuade her to take this small leap, she remained persistent upon staying where she?d be sheltered. Not everyone is made to run carefree in the rain, but what my friend had realized at that moment was that he wanted a girl that was.
Having lived a life of many challenges and obstacles due to his physical condition, Sean often times felt discriminated against in the relationship department. Yet, this date helped him realize that he, too, should be selective about who he dates because of all that he has to offer. Go get ?em Sean.
Blow Out the Flame:
I get a lot of my best song ideas from the people who enter my life and share their personal experiences with me. A while back, a fan club member (Aliceson) sent me an email and asked if I could write a song for her about something she was going through. Just a few days back, Aliceson had encountered someone that she hadn?t seen in years. Yet, this was no ordinary someone. A good number of years earlier, he was her high school sweet heart. The two had split up after moving in different directions and since that time, she had always wondered what would happen if they randomly met again.
After years of wondering, that day finally came. Yet, it was not what she thought it would be. She had been anticipating sparks and gravity even greater than before. Yet, both had changed so much that their chemistry was no longer there. On one hand, this was a sad and confusing feeling because the excitement of a possible meeting did not match the reality of it. Yet, it was also a great release because now she could finally let him go.
I have performed this song for Aliceson only once, yet since that time we have become friends. I am pleased that this song made it onto the album and that her passionate story could be shared with others who might need to do some letting go in their lives as well.
My Favorite 4-Letter Word:
Whether you have listened to my music or we?ve shared in conversation, you might have picked up that I don?t incorporate swear words into my everyday vocabulary. Not because I think it?s wrong or for any religious backing, but simply because I think it?s unoriginal. Of course, I?m surrounded by it and that?s okay, I just choose otherwise. So, why not have my favorite 4-letter word be something as powerful as ?love??
Growing up, I?ve always felt that I was different in many ways. I?ve never been drunk, smoked, did drugs, or done anything illegal. This may sound really boxy, but I?ve found all those other things to be artificial stimulates for a life that on it?s own, proves to be my greatest high. There were periods growing up that I was often teased, picked on, and harassed because I didn?t follow the herd. Now that I look back, I?m grateful that I stuck with who I am. Most of the followers I knew growing up have ended up living rather dull and uncreative lives. This song is a shout out to all the followers?it?s not too late to start creating your own path.
This song is about breaking away from the outside world?s expectations in order to pursue your life?s passion. Most of us buy into the corporate way of living. We have ?auto-pilot? jobs, spend half our waking life in a cubicle with no windows, sit in traffic, pay bills, and chip away at our life-long debt. For many, this is thought of as ?success?. I believe that success is doing what you love most for a living. To get there, it takes a huge mountain of fear and uncertainly to get over. It took me about 5 years to get over mine, but leaving my ?great job? in September of 2004 was the best thing I have ever done for myself and the career I wanted so badly.
Shortly after departing, I felt the need to celebrate my amazing new freedom with a song. This song is for anyone who has a dream but isn?t sure how to get there. To me, achieving your dream is a matter of perspective. Change it, and you?ll live a different ?reality? than the one you?ve compromised yourself for.
The Great Turtle Escape:
This song is about taking risks. When we live in the ?shells? of our comfort zones, we live in monotony. I think that if we operate to avoid discomfort, than little evolution takes place. It?s all about the journey.
I also used this song as an excuse to write really fun, random and crazy lyrics. I?ve always had a love for hip-hop too, and while the majority of my music doesn?t lean in that direction, I love that this song does.
The first time I ever performed this song was the day I wrote it. I thought I had the song memorized, but right in the middle of the first line, my mind went blank. Being that this is a very wordy and upbeat song, I somehow managed to improvise my way through it. The audience seemed pleased with my new song, but little did they know that I made all the lyrics up on the spot. The words made absolutely no sense, but they rhymed and worked. I?ll never forget how it felt like forever to get through the song. No matter how bad I messed up, I always remember my Father telling me to never let the audience know it. This advice has never let me down.
AZ to VA:
With two weeks to go before my graduation from the University of Arizona in May of 1998, I awoke in the middle of the night and felt a strong intuition to move to Virginia. Why Virginia? I have no idea. I just knew I had to go. I have lived my life following my intuitive self and it has always led me to greater things. This time would be no different. Of course, the next morning I was faced with having to call my Mom to tell her that instead of moving back home to find a real world j.o.b, I was moving to Virginia out of thin air. It was tricky to explain, but in time, my Mom understood that I needed to follow my sixth sense?like she always has.
Instead of getting a plane ticket, I thought it would be much more adventurous to go on a personal road trip to Virginia ?Greyhound style.? So, one week after graduating, I hopped on a Greyhound bus with my broken suitcase and headed for the unexpected. This song describes in great detail all the random events that occurred during my 4-day cross-country trip. From changing buses seven times, to a bus breaking down in the middle of New Mexico, to losing my luggage. Yes, everything in this song is factual. At the time, I chose to not get upset about all the mishaps along the way. Instead, I laughed about it all and in turn, it proved to be great material for a song.
Now, I know why I had to go to Virginia. Apart from numerous reasons, the one that stands out the most is that I possibly never would have discovered my ability to write songs due to my circumstances at the time. My ultimate dream (or reality as I like to think of it) is to sing and move people with my songs. Had I not followed my internal voice, I possibly never would have found my greatest passion.
This song almost never happened. When I initially started writing it, I thought this song was a little too heavy for me. I only wrote it about halfway through and then lost the motivation to finish. Yet, as I played a rough version for friends and family, I got a really good response. Perhaps this is because a lot of people could relate to it. So, I finished the song and ever since, it has been one of the most requested at my shows.
I wrote this song based on experiences I have had when a committed relationship becomes a little ?crowded?. I have been nave in the past in thinking that because I?m faithful, so is my partner. When you find out otherwise, it really stings, but at least now I don?t walk around in the dark and assume that everyone is trustworthy. It?s unfortunate that we have to guard ourselves, especially with those whom we are most intimate with. This song is about the patience and challenges that comes with developing trust.
Sooner than Later:
This song came shortly after Man Overboard. This is when I was in my ?contemplating relationships? mode. Sometimes romantic relationships work out and sometimes they don?t. When they don?t work out, have you ever asked yourself ?what if I had ended this way earlier?? Often, we go through weeks, months, perhaps years of ?working things out?, only to lose ourselves in the process.
I believe that if a relationship isn?t a good fit, than we shouldn?t try to force it. I?ve been one to do the opposite and ?stick it out? for too long. I don?t believe that we should quit at the initial signs of adversity, but perhaps it?s better to move on ?sooner than later?. This is something I?m learning and enjoy singing it to others who may be going through the same lesson.
Love in a Cafeteria:
This song all started because of a conversation about orange juice. I was on the phone in Virginia talking with my ex-girlfriend-turned-good-friend Gretchen. Somehow, we started talking about how we like different levels of pulp in our orange juice. This profound discussion led me to write this song for her about the playfulness that comes with food and love combinations. Feel free to use your imagination.
This song is about moving from the dream world to your waking world. Listen to your dreams and you?ll find answers that the sub-conscious provides. Dreams are more than just dreams. I believe they are whispers to the secrets that lie beneath our tainted minds.