Performed and Written by Derik Nelson
August 11, 2011 - Derik Nelson Explains Why He Wrote... "Phone Call"
With next month being the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001, I deemed it appropriate to share with you an original song I wrote as a tribute to the families affected by the tragic events that happened that day.
My inspiration for the song came a few years ago on September 11th, 2007. I got home from school and turned the TV on, and remember watching a memorial program that featured personal accounts and stories about 9/11. One story in particular that really struck me was centered around the phone calls being made by passengers in the planes to their loved ones back at home. There was something so desperately honest in the voices captured on those chilling, garbled clips of voicemails and recorded phone calls... It broke my heart.
It reminded me that above the politics, the war, the terror, and all the conspiracy theories, there were families being torn apart, and real husbands, wives, sons, daughters, mothers, and fathers having to say "I love you" for the last time. I was compelled to tell a story (albeit not a happy one) about such a situation in which a passenger on a plane has to say goodbye to his young son.
This song (until now) sat on the shelf ever since. I only performed it once. A few weeks ago, I realized we were coming up on the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and got the idea to film a video of the song. After revisiting it and discussing it with a close friend of mine, I came to the realization that the story wasn't over. I told the story of September 11, 2001, but what about September 11, 2011?
I wrote the end verse just a few short weeks ago, and finally gave such a sad story the silver lining it deserves. Because 9/11 affected the United States (and the world) on such a large scale, I fear that people might lose sight of just how far the destructive ripples from the events of that day can extend. My hope is that listeners will be reminded of the important things in life... Love of all kinds, and the sacred fragility of a family.
Thank you for listening, watching, and supporting. Please share this with someone you love.