What I Didn’t Say from Volume Five

Mountain Fever Records has a new single today from Volume Five, one written and sung by fiddler Glen Harrell.

What I Didn’t Say is a poignant and highly affecting song he put together about perhaps the worst thing any of us can imagine, losing both our parents separately over the course of a few months.

Glen says that he was very close with his mom and dad, and was completely devastated by their passing. The song grew out of that feeling he was left with that there was so much more to say to them in this life.

“I wrote this tune after losing my dad in a tragic accident while we were working together in August 2019. It brought me to the lowest place I have ever been in my entire life. No matter how much I try to tell myself that it will get easier to cope, the pain is always there. It was even more difficult because I lost my mother to cancer just two months before my dad passed away. Volume Five was performing in California when I got a call that my mom died, and it completely broke my heart that I couldn’t be with her.

My parents lived a very simple and modest life. I cherish the memories of sitting on their front porch laughing and having a good time, just talking about our lives and what was happening at that time. We have a large family, so we always had cookouts and enjoyed being around each other. When you lose your parents, you always wish you had asked them more questions, listened better when they were talking, told them everything you wanted them to know, and let them know how much you love them. If I had told mine every single day, it would still never be enough.

With this song, I just wanted to write something in memory of them, and share a little through the lyrics about how losing my dad in the accident truly broke me as a human being. It took the life out of me, and I know I will never be the same. I loved my parents dearly, and I think about them every day. I hope this song will inspire everyone who hears it to take time and visit your mom and dad, and spend quality time with them. We all think we will be ready when the time comes, and they leave this world, but I can tell you that even if they live to be 100, you will never be prepared.”

Despite the song’s depressing subject matter, this one moves along at a brisk bluegrass pace, adding another happy-sounding sad song to the repertoire. Harrell is supported by his Volume Five bandmates, Jacob Burleson on guitar, Aaron Ramsey on mandolin, Patton Wages on banjo, and Zach Collier on bass. Patton has had to step away from the band since this recording, having suffered a serious stroke in February of 2021. He is recovering nicely now, with Chris Wade taking his spot on banjo for the duration.

Have a listen…

What I Didn’t Say is available as a single now from popular download and streaming services online. Radio programmers will find the track at AirPlay Direct.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.