I love small towns. Over the years I've taken a lot of inspiration from little towns around my home and those I've had the opportunity to pass through out on the road. Those towns, and the people who live in them, show up every now & then in my songs.
My favorite little towns are honest--they don't have anything to hide. There's a gas station and a grocery store on Main Street. There's no mistaking the local garage. It's just around the corner and there's a wrecker, a tire display and a few car parts scattered around; A real barber shop is almost a necessity and there should be a place to get an ice cream cone.
Some of the neatest little towns in America dot the landscape within 50 miles of my home in the Tri-State Area of Michigan, Ohio and Indiana--Camden, Michigan; Butler, Indiana and Hicksville, Ohio come to mind.
One thing that makes tiny towns great is their sense of community. The guy who fixes your roof today may sit on the local school board. Everyone turns out for the game when the hometown team plays in the state finals. If someone is in need, the people of the town step in to help. There's a feeling of belonging in a small town.
I have spent some time in bigger towns. In fact, Chicago is one of my favorite places to spend an occasional weekend. It's a town that has a lot to offer just a couple hours' train ride from my home. Most of the time, though, I prefer to slow down and spend my days where I fit in best...In those tiny little towns.