Ithaca Blog

Friday, September 12, 2008

Steve Earle's Voice of Hope

It is probably unnecessary to review Steve Earle's show at the State Theater last night as a house-rocking, politically charged event, because of course it was. But we would like to note a comment by Mr. Earle about religion, faith, hope, and understanding - that is, in the long run, about living.

It might be no surprise that the iconclastic Mr. Earle subscribes to no religion. And yet, he said,

I'm not a Christian, a Jew, or a Muslim. But I know a lot of people who found wisdom by following those religions.

He spoke of his own guiding philosophy as the religion of recovery from drug addiction.

I don't believe in hopeless cases, because I can't. I believe in miracles, because I am one.

Mr. Earle went on to suggest that hope must be coupled with work; then lead a stirring sing-along to his tribute to Pete Seeger, "Steve's Hammer (For Pete)":

One of these days I'm gonna lay this hammer down.
And I won't have to drag this weight around.
When there ain't no hunger and there ain't no pain,
I won't have to swing this thing.
One of these days I'm gonna lay this hammer down.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca Blog

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