Beautifully Broken

Brandi Carlile has a song "The Things I Regret" and in there she has a verse that simply says:

"With the weight of the world resting on my back, 
And the road on which I've traveled is as long as it is cracked 
But I keep pressing forward with my feet to the ground, 
For a heart that is broken makes a beautiful sound"

So earlier this year I found a busted-up violin that needed a little help, my original plan was to have it restored and turned into a 5-string as that's become more of my sound over the last three years or so. The violin had nice wood, good high archings and seemed like a good candidate for my plans, but for a fairly nasty crack in the top... The original neck had been snapped in half and someone had repaired it with some form of epoxy and if you're a fan of antique and vintage instruments like me... Well, that just makes your heart hurt!

After a consult with a few people, it became clear that this violin wasn't really worth restoring to my original plans, as the cost would be rather expensive for an instrument with very little value... So another violin has been selected and at the time of this writing is being worked into the instrument I'm hoping to create my life's work with... However sitting in the case was this broken violin, with some pretty serious scars and some collateral damage from a life well played somewhere. 

Now anybody that knows me, is probably aware that I don't mind getting my own hands dirty on instrument repair, and well... This instrument was already badly damaged anyway and "not worth fixing" so I figured I'd set about doing a little repair work myself... What could it hurt?!

I won't bore people with the details but suffice it to say I did a lot of research and used a fair amount of sharp tools, glue, and spool clamps, and brought this violin back to life, the cost? Well, a couple of small cuts here and there, one or two blisters, but the broken cracks are stronger now than they were as new, the violin sings again! 

What is the point of this blog post? 

Well just because you are broken, doesn't always mean the experts can determine your value by your flaws! A broken violin deemed ready for the woodpile in fact still has a beautiful sound left inside of it, and a broken heart can still love, possibly stronger once healed. 

They like to say the soundpost of a violin which is a small dowel that runs from top to back of the violin for support is the "soul" of a violin. I propose then that if the soundpost is the soul then the top is the heart and lungs!

A broken heart can be rebuilt, and a soul can be renewed, even reset as often is needed in life... Every dream that becomes shattered or true can be renewed, but sometimes there's work involved.

After hearing this violin wake up and come to life for the last week now I can't fathom anyone ever thinking it ever being worthless! Every broken-hearted person I've ever known has still had a song in them somewhere!







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