Eddie Owen, though best known for promoting musicians, is also a lover of good books. And he’s a master of mixing literature and lyrics.
“There is nothing more important in life than keeping alive the art of the written word,” Owen said, “and life is in the song. When the songwriter is good, we don’t just listen, we live the life of the song with them.”
No one exemplifies that more than Mary Fahl, former lead singer and founding member of the October Project. As a solo artist, she’s done albums for Sony Odyssey and V2 Records and has written songs for major films, including writing and performing the theme song for the Warner Bros. Civil War epic “Gods and Generals.” She’s currently touring the country to promote her new album “Live at the Mauch Chunk Opera House,” produced by John Lissauer of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” fame.
Fahl, an avid reader and Anne Rice fan, had hoped to have some of her songs included in the film “Interview with the Vampire.”
“My band, October Project, had some songs submitted for consideration. We had songs on our first record that would have been perfect for the movie version of the book, but our stuff never made it. We didn’t have the ‘star power’ of Guns and Roses,” Fahl said.
Coincidentally, a fan of Rice — someone Fahl didn’t even know — asked the novelist if she’d heard of Fahl or the October Project.
Rice hadn’t, but started listening to Fahl online. She immediately started posting Fahl’s music on YouTube where she described her voice as “supernatural.”
“Anne wrote me a very nice letter and said she’d found the voice she was looking for,” Fahl said.
Fahl then sent a copy of “Love and Gravity” via a friend to Rice, who was at a writers convention in NYC. Rice sent a galley of her new book, “Wolves of Midwinter” to Fahl and informed her she was in the book, both in the dedication where she was named a muse along with Jon Bon Jovi, and in the story where her voice haunts Reuben, the main character.
Rice also asked the songwriter to perform at the Lestat Ball in New Orleans for Halloween of 2014. There, a friend of Fahl took it upon herself to ask Rice if the singer could write a song for the audio book. She was given 10 days to do it and got her song “Exile” in under the wire.
“I wanted it to completely express how much passion there is in the book,” Fahl said.
Lissauer commented, “Her song took on its own life.”
And to use Owen’s words as a refrain: “When the songwriter is good, we don’t just listen, we live the life of the song with them.”
You can live the life of Fahl’s songs at the Red Clay Music Foundry in Duluth on April 18 at 8 p.m.
Susan Larson is a writer from Lilburn. Email her at email@example.com.