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Mark Schultz Tells His 'Stories Behind The Songs'

( [email protected] ) Sep 28, 2004 10:15 PM EDT

Mark Schultz, an artist who likens his musical style to “storytelling,” has released his first book titled Stories Behind The Songs. The book, which took Schultz a year to complete, shares the experiences and inspiration behind the songs on Schultz’s three studio projects, which includes his latest release, Stories And Songs, and contains rare pictures to accompany the narrative. The book is available exclusively through Schultz’s website (www.markschultzmusic.com) and at merchandise tables at concert events (Schultz is currently on tour with Avalon and Matthew West, for dates and venue information visit his official website). Here is an excerpt from the book:

Leaving Kansas

So here I was in Nashville, checked into the first motel I could afford, the legendary Motel 6. The room was in pretty bad shape, which was probably why I could afford it. It smelled of mildew, wallpaper was peeling off the wall plus I was sharing the room with another couple. A couple of cockroaches, that is.

My dream was quickly becoming my nightmare. But I called home with a voice full of fake confidence, “Mom, I’m here. I made it to Nashville, it’s great!” But who can fool their mom? She could hear the truth in my voice. “Son you can come home if you want to, you don’t have to prove anything to us, we love you,” she said. But I answered (lied), “No, really, this is the greatest place in the world, the perfect place for me, it’s where I’m supposed to be.” As I was saying this, the cockroaches scurried across the carpet in front of me looking for a better place to hide. My dad, who had been listening on another phone said, “That’s my boy! You hang in there.”

I remember the last thing I asked them before I hung up, “Are you proud of me?” My dad chuckled and said, “We’re awfully proud of you, Son.” I told them I loved them and hung up the phone.

I sat on the edge of the bed and took out an acoustic guitar that a friend had given me. It had two broken strings and I didn’t even know how to play it. And the tears began running down my face. I thought I had made the biggest mistake of my life. No friends, no job, no place to live. All I had was a handful of money and the feelings of being lost and alone. This wasn’t anything like I thought it would be. I remember praying, “God, I’ve always known about you, but if you are truly real and you are really up there I need you to prove it to me. I’ve gotten myself in way over my head. If you could show me you are real and get me out of this mess I’ll do anything. I’m all yours, I promise, but I need you show me some kind of a sign that you are real.”

I sat on the bed, tears on my face and waited for him to show up.