Scared The Hell Out of Me
8. Scared The Hell Out Of Me:
As a songwriter, one thing I’ve learned is that you never know where you’ll find your next song idea. In 2016, I was on the interstate in Florida heading to a performance there.
A billboard on the highway caught my eye. It said… “Want to get the hell scared out of you? Come in here.” It was the week of Halloween and the billboard was actually an advertisement for a large church nearby. I immediately picked up my phone and recorded myself a voice message. I thought it would make a great song idea.
Back in Nashville, I called Shell. We had been on a roll with our recent songwriting. We got together and kicked a couple of other ideas around, but they went nowhere. I really wanted to try ‘Scared the Hell Out of Me.’ It started with just a melody idea—that bluesy open D sound, with my guitar tuned down a whole step—and then the tale began to unravel. It could have been about me! Well… except for the part about the man killing his woman and then himself—that we made up. Much of the rest of this story mirrored many of my own wrong turns in life. I remembered old sermons I heard as a child and how afraid I was (and still am), of the horrors of an eternity spent separated from God and one’s family in a place called Hell. I remembered going against God’s law time and again and my many years as a completely lost soul. Finally, thanks to what my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ did for me at Calvary, I found forgiveness and a much more hopeful eternity, when my days here are finished.
I thank God for leading me to look at the sign and for giving Larry and me the tale to tell.