Matt Williams has an extremely valid answer as to the question of why.
Williams, a retired Army chaplain who served tours in Iraq and Afghanistan is still on a mission. This time he is armed with a Guild acoustic guitar, poignant songwriting skills and a plaintively emotive voice.
As Matt explained during a recent Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) meeting I attended in Boone, N.C., he writes for the same reason many of us do – because we have to.
At that meeting, he performed a couple of passion-enthused original tunes, including “I Don’t Care,” which is about someone who has almost given up hope. Songs about PTSD and rejection aren’t the stuff of which pop stars are made. But they do deserve a place in our musical consciousness.
Matt has made peace with a lot during his battle-scared life, including the fact that he won’t make a fortune from his music or gain fame, get radio play or sell out concert halls.
But that’s okay.
The payoff he gets is from the positive, and often emotional, reaction he receives from the veterans with whom he regularly meets. He wrings hugs and even tears from even the toughest and battle-hardened vets he tracks down on his travels.
They get the message because he has been where they are and they dig it. He’s singing their pain, their isolation and hopelessness.
No matter where he goes his art leaves them better off then when he showed up and you can’t ask for much more than that from an audience or for a reason for being a songwriter.
You can learn more about Matthew Owen William's mission at his Retired Army Chaplain website: http://www.retiredarmychaplain.com/music.html