“Levi” is an allegory for the often-messy spiritual journey my life has been. 

Like many of my songs, it draws loosely on actual experiences:

  • A pre-cut hair-wash by “Levi” in a second-floor sink. 
  • drunken adventures throughout my misspent youth. 
  • long walks by the Hudson River when staying with my manager on Charles Street. 
  • my decision to stop drinking many moons ago.

In the flow of creativity, I assembled all that and then some into a narrative that straddles the fence between fiction and non-fiction. 

I was baptized by Levi in a second-floor sink
Trembling, and badly in need of a drink
The henchmen were gathered below
They were antsy for bloodshed.
I slipped out the back door to see where the alleyway led

I was seven days sober and losing my mind
Turned to a stranger who seemed to be kind
She led me to heaven
But left me out on the front doorstep
My knees on the pavement, my aching head filled with regret

Oh, the drunks down on Broadway they sing out a song
Lights along Christopher guide me along
I turn right on Amsterdam even though everything’s wrong
Mama, everything’s wrong

She greeted me sadly then asked me my name
A five-dollar whore with a ten-dollar name
13 nights later she still hadn’t charged me for nothing
We traded our shoes for guitars and we started to sing

Oh, the drunks down on Broadway…

I fell back alone on a gray Sunday morn
The jeans on my backside were tattered and torn
I stumbled along, ’til I stood by the black Hudson River
The wind it blew cold, as my soul finally started to stir

The drunks down on Broadway…

The afternoon sky it grew heavenly wings
Lifted me high above everything
As darkness descended, I knew I had only to sing
I have only to sing…

15+ years since I wrote it and still I have only to sing.

I have only to sing.