The cheap acoustic guitar I received for 8th grade graduation was the best gift I have ever received. I got my callouses playing along with Neil Young, David Gilmour, Richie Blackmore, and Jerry Garcia. I switched to electric guitar and played the typical high school gigs-basements, parties, talent shows (sadly, high school in Baltimore was not as interesting as John Waters movies make it out to be). I then gravitated back toward acoustic guitar after I got to the University of Virginia and mostly jammed with random fraternity brothers and friends. After college, I helped form The Jolly Llamas, a rather rag-tag assortment of musicians including drummer Warren Job (now with American Dumpster), Mike "Stinky Llama" Carmody on percussion, the poetry and scat of Browning Porter, and of course Ruthie the rubber rat. We actually achieved some regional success, in such unexpected places as Harrisonburg,VA and Elkins, WV, billing ourselves as "AcoustElectric CyberFolk." Our highlights both occurred in 1991 at Trax night club in Charlottesville: we opened for an up-and-coming band from Vermont named Phish, and we played at a very special "Free Pizza Night, featuring the Jolly LLamas and introducing: Dave Matthews." Since the Llamas went our separate ways in the early '90s, I have focused more on writing than on performing, but I've tried to keep my hand in by playing local open mic nights at Baja Bean and Millers and have enjoyed playing with local musicians including Terri Allard, Ian Gilliam, Drex Weaver, Nate Brown, Matt Wilner and Steve Barling. This project is an attempt to capture my favorite songs of the past 20 years. I've tried to include just about every type of tune I've written, from folk to country, from electric blues to jazz to funk! The title song is based on an ancient story from the Taoist tradition; it features five different vocalists and instrumentalists in a tightly interwoven groove. It achieves musically what several of the songs approach from a lyrical angle-the idea of cycles and changing perspective. I really hope you enjoy this music. I've put my heart and soul into each song, and if you listen closely you'll know me well-or at least better than you did before. May these songs inspire you to live, laugh, and love. Special thanks to my executive producer Enzo for all his support, and for maybe someday letting me drive his car (or at least sit in the passenger seat). To Jon Roll for his amazing, and uncredited graphic art work. To some folks I never met from Mendocino who inspired the guitar solo on Bottom of the Wheel (and to Duracell for making the AA battery used as a slide). To C-line for her red and blue pencils. To all the musicians who worked to get these arrangements out of my head. And of course to Julianne and Sally for filling my life with joy and love, which I've tried to reflect back through these songs. Forrest p.s. Ruthie, wherever you are - I miss you, please come home!