From the belfry, we followed the stairs down to small living quarters once meant for monks or church officials. As we entered, the wood floor creaked. In some places one could reach straight through the partially exposed walls and touch the old stone there. A single defunct fireplace sat full of ash and an old wrought-iron grate set the tone for Spearman's strumming. Spearman positioned himself before a single window where a beam of light shimmered over him.
Out of a small and delicate interlude came "Foolish Apprehension," a song about a man coming to terms with time, dreams and loss. At one point, Spearman sang, "There are clocks that have been ticking for at least a million years, the sound of footsteps leaving is still ringing in his ears." The line seemed to resonate with the room's history left hidden in its cracked mortar.
The introspective style Spearman brings to his folky, finger-plucked music is as enchanting as it is accomplished. With his left side only illuminated by a sunbeam, Spearman is a subtle mixture of light and dark, whimsy and rumination, time machines and apprehension.
Video: Jarred Gastreich for Show Me Shows
Sound: Ryan Albritton for R&R Music Labs
Writer: Will Kyle
88.1 KDHX welcomes Ryan Spearman to Thursdays at the Intersection on September 6, an event co-sponsored by Grand Center, Inc. and presented by PNC Arts Alive.