I am saddened to hear that Dan Fogelberg died today. I am not surprised as he was fightng prostate cancer. But I am saddened.
Leader of the Band was a huge song for me as a kid as it found that empty father-son place in my heart and gave me hope, a vision. I still listen to it about every 6 months or so.
I have great memories of listening to Fogelberg one summer as I spent a week in my favorite place in the world, Duluth, Minnesota. I was in college and stayed at a friends' house who were out of town. I was single and longing to find a girl who would soothe my heart, spend time with me, want to be with me. Looking for a Lady spoke to me and reminded me that I am not alone in feeling alone. Souvenirs helped me to know how valuable it is to remember, to save things, and to cry. There's a Place in the World for a Gambler helped me know that love is a risk and that risk is worth it.
When I graduated from college at 22 years old, I felt lost as could be. Wandering Shepherd played on a bootlegged cassette as I drove my 1975 Buick Century to no where specific in Searcy, Arkansas and wept the loss of a college life that had brought me so much fun; I wept for a future that was completely unknown.
More recently, I have relied on Nether Lands to remind me that life is this gift that must be lived, a life void of worship is a life void of appreciation of the wonders of this place in which we live.
Oh, there are many other Fogelberg songs which have connected with me, mentored me, and held me when I was alone, but I will stop here.
Dan, thanks for your trail of gifts. I have picked up so many of them and kept them close. You will be missed.