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Finch Biography

My friend Dawson had a sweet sixteen birthday party in September of 2004, and he got Finch’s What It Is To Burn on CD. Fast forward eight years and I’m writing you on how I met Finch…. How I met Finch is a long and twisted story that mainly involves personal depressions and two dudes bonding over Jimmy Eat World’s “Goodbye Sky Harbor,” but regardless of how the road started, I travelled it. There was a day in early October 2012 where Randy called me around 7:00, as he did and does regularly; I was about to eat dinner and asked him if I could call him back. He said “Yes, Daniel… please, call me back.” Which, if you don’t know me: I don’t know go by Daniel, and if you don’t know Randy Strohmeyer: he’s not the type to address you by your formal name. I didn’t really expect that phone call to change my life. He told me Finch were getting back together. He asked for my help. I flew out to California in February to see the first of the WHAT IT IS TO BURN ANNIVERSARY shows at the Glasshouse, I can’t tell you the stories behind all the songs – you’d have to ask Nate for most of them – and I definitely can’t tell you what each one means to you. What I can tell you is that “Project Mayhem” will always remind me of discussing Grizzly’s dance moves in Manchester and getting punched in Pomona (and asking their manager Andy if I looked OK, him saying yes, and getting back to Randy’s place and having a terrible black eye). “What It Is To Burn” will remind me of Toronto, where Nate stared at me as he dropped a James Hetfield like “yeha!” in the song. “Three Simple Words” will take me to the lights flashing in perfect timing in London in front of more than five thousand people, standing stage left, freaking out like a fan girl as more people than I know by name chanted every lyric to the entire album. John Lennon has some famous quote about not meeting your idols that he said after talking to an old, fat, jaded Elvis. Randy was afraid that when I went on tour with the band, it would change my view of the people in it, my view of the music they made, and my view of him, one of my best friends in life. And it really hasn’t changed my view on anything, except that now I know some of my favorite musicians are some of my favorite people. At the end of every show, the five friends hug and take a group bow, and thank the crowd; I don’t know if they did that in 2003 and 2004, but they did it in 2013, and the love was sincere. The second to last show of the tour was in Paris; Randy thanked the guitar tech, Dakotah, and I to the crowd, and Grizzly hugged me and kissed me on the cheek. I laughed about it; I felt appreciated. Two days later, they played Amsterdam in the final show of the tour. That night while they were taking their group bow and final applause, I cried knowing that I had witnessed something great, that I had spent a month of my life doing my best to let them create greatness night in and night out. I never expected that phone call to change my life, but it did. What It Is To Burn is an amazing album. I have no idea what it means to you, but I can only hope it means a fraction of what it means to me.


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