Season One, Episode 03 – Current With The Past

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DAVE BIXBY: Quetzacoatl is a legend of a man who walked through the Americas, who had Christ-like abilities. The Toltecs called him Quetzacoatl after the Quetzal bird. He never said what his name was. And the the Mayans call him Kukulcsn, and another name was Wiraqocha. And this was a Christ type person that, that there’s legends and artifacts. There’s a temple of Quetzacoatl down in by Mexico City, and there’s writings that have been found to talk about this man and the things that he did. I felt that Christ, the spirit has visited this planet throughout creation in one form or another.

Gandhi could be Christ, okay? You and I could be Christ if we discipline ourselves. So Christ is a way of being. Jesus the man kind of ushered that into our planet. He says, what you’ve seen me do, you can do. My whole premise and I have to go back to where I was at cuz I’ve been asked this question before and I really think, I did not want to use the name Jesus, because Christians have have turned it in–there’s so many people that don’t know him or don’t know what it’s about. He’s about pushing it. And at that time, garage bands were turning into Christian praise groups. And they were just rhyming stuff. There was no depth to it whatsoever.

And so I used Quetzacoatl maybe as a mystery, which worked. If I would’ve just gone, Jesus, Jesus, where do you think this album would be today? So I think, I don’t think that was wisdom on my part. I think it was lucky on my part that I would pick something that’s kind of bizarre and non-Christian. I didn’t want it to be Christian. I don’t see psychedelic in the music that I was playing of Quetzacoatl because I was recovering from psychedelics. However, the psychedelic thought process of getting you out of this physical world we live in, that stays with you forever. I do remember the first part of the sixties, I don’t know about the last part of it.

I am Dave Bixby. David Bixby. I go by David. Dave was the name I used. That’s okay too. We’re in Northern Arizona, which is a lifestyle that I’ve picked for myself and I love it here. And it’s got the balance of what I’m looking for. And from here I get to travel around and do concerts and share with you people things that are meaningful to me and things that can be proven if you’re willing to discipline yourself.

I was born in Michigan, grand Rapids, Michigan. And grew up on the Great Lakes and had a lot of fun with water and sand dunes. And my father was not religious. My mother took me a couple different denominations. She wasn’t particularly religious, but that was something that she felt that she should do for us. So I was with her most of the time, he never participated. Really good folks. They were good to me. I wasn’t all twisted out because of my upbringing.

They left me alone. I could do whatever I wanted as long as I stayed outta trouble. They didn’t draw him in to putting a leash on me. And then growing up, my, my folks would buy me instruments and help me out with that. My first experiences when I was 11 listening to Kingston Trio and Peter Paul, and Mary and then Bob Dylan came on a scene and then pretty soon Beatles came up and folk music was kind of something else.

And I knew all the folk songs and I was playing at different engagements was on tv. We had a little knockoff Kingston Trio band with a banjo and a guitar, and a tenor guitar, and we had our stripe shirts, so we looked like, and her hair was cut back. And then pretty soon Jimmy Hendrix came along and folk music turned into psychedelic folk. Then I got into drug use. 

AUDIO CLIP: The point is, in order to use your head, you have to go out of your mind. 

DAVE BIXBY: In fact, I dropped acid in high school. I did pretty well too. Speech class got 

AUDIO CLIP: 15 to 20% of our young people today are exploring their consciousness. 

DAVE BIXBY: It was like going into my closet and there’s another world on the other side. 

AUDIO CLIP: And it can be even more important than reading the Bible six times or becoming a Pope or something like that.

DAVE BIXBY: You don’t understand what’s happening to you, but what I think now, Is that our programming falls away and our fears falls away and all our filters fall away. And if you got demons, you’ll see ’em. If you got angels, you’ll see ’em. And that’s how life is. If you have fear, your fear will produce a result. And that’s not life doing it to you. You’re the one that sewed the seeds and we don’t know that we’re out of touch with, that we’re the source. And that’s back when LSD was not illegal. So it was introduced by the United States government into our society.

There was a doctor up in, Grand Rapids, Michigan, who was a neurosurgeon who was asked to do controlled experiments, and they gave him acid. And so he took it and he liked it and he gave it to his sons and they liked it. And he had his sons bring in their friends, and we all tripped together. And so he had somewhat of a mentor as far as a professional, a person. That would talk to us about it. Before you take this, you gotta understand if something comes up you don’t like it’s an illusion. So don’t freak out. Don’t jump off a building, don’t do anything stupid and you’ll be out of this in eight hours.

So we, they talked about having a bad trip. No one I knew really had one. It was, pretty much enlightenment for everybody. It’s not their demons were coming. It was wonder. I thought it was amazing to look at a square door and watch it start to breathe or the floor start to raise up and watching people’s faces change while you’re looking at ’em and all of a sudden you can’t recognize them and been snapping back out of it. Those are things that can freak ya out. Never freaked me out.

I thought interesting. Cause I knew it was an illusion. And I wouldn’t say LSD gives you a spiritual experience, but you get to see the wonder of the creation while you’re tripping. That’s not God. That’s what God made and we’re in that. And music was right in there with it. And all the people that were doing music, we were all kind of, hey, try this. I got– my dad gave me some acid. Let’s drop acid. And I thought, well, if your dad gave it to you, it must be okay. It was just so odd to see a suit and tie dropping acid.

I had rock bands I was in and we were doing all cover tunes and yeah, we were tripping and playing in those bands. One of the band was called Friends of Mind. Another one was Peter and the Prophets. I realized that I was trying to become a man, but our society doesn’t have rights of passage, so we’re kind of on our own. Our fathers didn’t get it, so they couldn’t give it to us. Dropping acid in the experiment was a discovery of self. And the trick was to, when you have a realization or an epiphany, which you can’t have while on acid, is how to bring that into the real world. Take it out of the illusion.

SAMPLE: Turned on to your own nervous, turned on to your own body. You turned onto an incredible wisdom, which lies inside every settlement. 

DAVE BIXBY: Well, I started doing it every week, which is a little much. You need to decompress. It became almost a habit. And that’s where you get in trouble with it because you’re not giving yourself a chance to wrap your head around that and normalize before you’re out there again. And that’s where you can disconnect and it’s a horrible experience. It’s like going to hell and still, and living through it. 

SAMPLE: It can be the hope for heaven or a hell full of horror.

DAVE BIXBY: And then poof, my circuit blew out. I flipped. Okay, so I hit the void. It’s not like I was angry or mad or anything. I was just like, I was just tripping on the energy and all of a sudden I was in the void. I was hoping when I came down I’d be okay and I wasn’t, and I wandered around for about a year as an empty body. It’s like a soul death. I couldn’t formulate prayers, I couldn’t articulate that I needed help. I couldn’t go to my parents.

Couldn’t formulate sentences. And if I was frustrated, there’s just– I couldn’t, I couldn’t express it. I couldn’t recognize my parents. I didn’t recognize my home. My cat, who I grew up with, would have nothing to do with me. There was just something about my energy, like, let me outta here. I don’t even wanna be in the same room with you. 

SAMPLE: I couldn’t, I couldn’t. I couldn’t.

DAVE BIXBY: I was broken and I knew that no earthly, there was no earthly cure. I was spiritually dead. It’s truly like a living hell. And if I would’ve concluded like many people do that, the rest of my life is gonna be like this, I would’ve killed myself. No question about it. And it’s not like poor me. It’s like I need out. Suicide looked like a breath of fresh air to where I was coming from. I kept looking at myself in the mirror. I didn’t know who I was. And the fear of going outside and being with other people. The realization that I’m done, I screwed myself up beyond repair. And there all the good time friends were gone.

There was like, in fact, they weren’t even friends, they were just, we did the same drugs together. Now, when I quit, they quit me. I just dropped out of that whole scene and dropped out of all that people say all those people, and I was a loner at that point. I call it a little death process. It’s probably more of a death of my ego than it was a death of my spirit. So I was nobody and I knew it after this LSD experience in this emptying out in this recovery process.

I could not put into words my experience, but music covered it quite well because that covers the emotions and it covers more aspects of communication than just talking. So the songs were a documentation for myself. A therapy for myself. A psalm that the difference between a song and a psalm is a psalm has a truth in it. And when you forget the truth and you come back and listen to the psalm, you go, oh yeah, it realigns you. With what you know to be true, but we drift from what we know to be true and then we start not liking ourselves.

I wrote these songs and started playing ’em at group meetings. When we started growing, there was like 300 people. This is David Bixby and we are at the, Southern Baptist Church. And, they’ve been good enough to let us use the stage to do a mini concert for you. I was playing music in Christian coffee shops. I started listening to and I had some people that were sharing testimonies where they prayed and had something happen. Don DeGraff came to a coffee shop where I was playing with a friend of mine, Brian McKinnes, who played league guitar in a band with me, Don DeGraff, claimed to have an experience with God.

All right, Brian believed it. Brian told me about him. He told him about me. So they came down to where I was and Don wanted to talk to me. He wasn’t like a preacher. And he didn’t have an agenda to shove at me. He was curious about me. And, then we went back to this little church that, he represented at the time. And he had a key and we went in and prayed. And they prayed that God would reveal himself to me and heal me. It was a great little prayer but it wasn’t my prayer. It was theirs. You could make up a spiritual experience and, because you want one, so you gotta be careful of that. 

SAMPLE: Walk me through the secret. 

DAVE BIXBY: And then I went home that night going, are you there? And that’s, that was my first prayer. And if you’re there, don’t hurt me. Then I think that’s where it all began. Because when I did my own praying and quit listening to everybody else My light went back, huh? I knew who I was and I was beat up, but I felt good. So chances are you’ll have to go through a period of aloneness between you and your creator before you’ll find other people who have had similar experiences and know exactly what you’re talking about. You don’t have to explain it.

That was up in Grand Rapids, Michigan it was 1969, and the basement filled up with people and we’d meditate and have prophecies and have these experiences and we’d pull out the scriptures and start talking about this stuff. And then the, then that turned into bible studies. DeGraff became more of a leader. These groups grew because church was pretty boring at that time for a lot of people. Doing these concert, people say, well, why don’t you do an album? I’d like– do you have any albums? And that’s where the seed was planted.

This particular church I was involved with offered to pay for it. It took two nights and we did the re the songs in order that I did ’em. Presented him in a concert. I took him to a man who recorded gospel music and he had connections in Nashville. He sent the tape and the artwork and they did the rest. And it was a low budget, I think a dollar a album. A thousand albums. I named it Ode to Quetzacoatl or Ode to Christ. I don’t know if I can really tell you why I chose that name.

I think I chose it because I didn’t want it to look like Christianity. And I think that’s what makes it, is the time it came out. The mystique around it. It’s searching at a time when church isn’t working. Drug song was after I recovered. And it was describing the hell I came out of. I was tired of talking about it, so I put it into a song and I could just like, I could, it was closure for me. That was then, this was now

666 described the last days. It describes how we as a people are unconscious. We’re, we think we have control, but we’re being controlled. We did concerts and we had so many disciples, so to speak. That’s what we called ourselves. Going out, bringing in people. We didn’t need radio. We didn’t need, I mean, we were filling up concerts, charging our own money and doing all this, get away from the church stuff in which was very attractive.

And also get away from your parents, which is a cult thing, at that age. Most people want, kids wanna get away from their parents and their brothers and sisters. And then we had this album with my testimony on the back and these things were being sold and doors started opening. And we were getting calls from colleges and people come and speak to us.

At this point we have an organization called The Group. Don DeGraff at that point started taking upon himself leadership, and more people started giving themselves over to him. He was a ruffian turned Jesus. It’s a good story. Christians like hearing that . Here’s a guy out in the streets with the knives and him being a badass, and now all of a sudden , the Jesus comes to him. And so now he reaches out to these people and transforms their lives. Yeah, that’s an old story. There’s nothing special about that. As the women started coming in and the men started practicing celibacy, and so Don started making himself a harem.

He started becoming an Old Testament prophet. Grand Rapids grew to a 300, and then we broke off and opened up maybe 10 states. And each state had like 30, 40 people. So most of us all held jobs. We rented maybe two or three houses, house for the men, house for the women. And so that was as communal as it got. This whole thing turned into a machine. We were recruiting and then we were selling soap, going out, testifying and selling litter bags and combs and parking lots and panhandling money and giving it to Don.

We were trained to, to meditate in the morning for one hour, and then we, and a lot of times we would meet at these houses, so it’d be group meditation and we were to be sit blindfold with earplugs and not move. The master meditator, if you move, they would take a cattle prod and put it on the back of your neck and slap you with it. No sex, no tv, no media, no meat, no alcohol, no negative thinking. Scripture, reading focus, positive points in your head making program, tapes that you go to sleep with and tapes with an alarm that’ll wake you out of a deep sleep and program yourself on who you want to be and how you want to be. And Degraf never programmed us. He had us program ourselves

AUDIO CLIP: And then slowly exhale.

DAVE BIXBY: When you’re in a cult, the outside world is the enemy, and I can see that creeping into my music. It’s them and us. Because the first one turned into a marketing tool. Now we’ve got another marketing tool. DeGraff owned this on lock, stock, and barrel, and I took my name off it. And put it out there as a mystery. As far as I’m concerned, any church that has a tax number with the United States government is a cult. All the cults that had been busted in this country is not because of religion or because of anything. They were doing weird to people.

It was because they were making money and putting it in their pocket and not claiming it. And all the DeGraff had to do was sign up to be a church like any other church. The heat was on. The police were looking at him. The church was looking at him. The gals he was doing, some of ’em would get disgruntled and let the cat outta the bag. And we quit doing concerts. We quit doing public stuff. He didn’t want me to play music at the meetings anymore.

And I asked him about some of the prophecies that he had abandoned. Forget the Bible, forget this, and that. Now we’re meditating. We’re worshiping this guy. And he was very upfront with me. He says, it’s over, David. You need to find your own way. And he was hoping I would leave quietly. And I did. I was addicted to this group. That’s a cult. And I was so embarrassed, ashamed. I felt so stupid that, and I knew better than this. It dwindled into his harem and they bought a ski lodge up in Northern New Mexico where they could live it and sleep it.

I had parents hire me to go up there and get their kids out, and they gave me plane tickets and, a couple of bucks to go in there and these people knew who I was. It’s not like I was a deprogrammer that didn’t understand their situation. They’re following a path that I abandoned. And I was a leader. What I did is I went in to the sons and daughters of the people who employed me to go in. And I lived amongst them right next to ’em, unbeknownst to them. Had my backpack and I didn’t have any campfires. And I just I slept right next to their lodge and I was up in trees and this and that.

I was waiting for the individual. And it was interesting because for them, I must have just appeared outta nowhere. And I go, your folks wanna know what’s going on with you, and here’s a plane ticket home. All of ’em said, you know what? I knew this day was coming. I’m not ready right now. And in time, all of them went home. Everybody’s afraid of life outside of that little click.

We all choose what we choose and you can’t be blaming Don DeGraff for me, giving up my will. And then he allegedly died in a helicopter crash, which could be faked. He had a baby with one of the gals, and I can see him getting out of responsibility of that by faking this little death thing. Or he might really be dead. I don’t know.

Once letting go. It’s like they call cutting bait. When your lure is hooked up on the bottom and the sun’s going down and you wanna go home. Well, you’re gonna give up maybe what? $8 worth of tackle. Cut it. Go home. Okay? But most people won’t. Same thing with a cult. In order to get out after you’ve been indoctrinated. You’re your own worst enemy. You’re like a surgeon who needs surgery trying to operate on himself. You know how to do it, but you can’t do it. You need someone else to do that. Once I got out, got clear, I came out this way, came out west. I was up in some property I bought in Northern New Mexico and I was off the grid, so there was no telephone.

All the people that lived in that area, there was one person on the edge that had an old time telephone line, and we all had CB radios. And it was like a whole little community out there. I thought, well, this is– I thought I was all alone out there, and for the most part I was. But I realized within 20 square miles there’s a lot of people just like me. And most of ’em have the same reason for being out there. And then I moved to Valley, which is North of here. I lived another eight years off the grid.

I spent a lot of time down in the canyon, Grand Canyon, days in the canyon without passes or nothing. I just disappeared in the canyon. And at night there were no rangers, nobody to check on you, and I would do all my hiking at Moonlight. There was another world. I was all by myself. Could have been a hundred years ago where I was, other than jet streams in the sky, I could have been ancient. Got a chance to wrap my head around my past and to see what were legitimate spiritual experiences in what were falsified in what I bought into.

I had to dump all of it. I had to cut bait. There was a therapy there. Okay. I was not religious anymore and I wasn’t preaching anything or teaching anything. I was just being. Then I left there kind of a new person. 1981, 82, I went up to Seattle and five days after I got there I got a job at the Cairo Television. Which is a major TV station in Seattle. And I wanted to do some jingle work. 

SAMPLE: By authority of the Federal Communications Commission. We now begin another day of tele casting.

DAVE BIXBY: Going up to Seattle turned me into a sailor. The dream of sailing was a, not a nightmare, but the tide was against me. I didn’t know what I was doing. I understood the books and as I got out and sailed for two or three years and had I learned how to work with a tide and I learned how to, instead of fighting nature. I understood that I’m not– i’ll, I’ll lose. You gotta get with nature. The name of the boat was Free Spirit. I sailed the boat and banged it into a few bridges and it needed some work. So I left the TV station.

My next adventure was to finish off this boat, and I moved up into the Snohomish River. I could go up river from the saltwater and there was marinas all up and down these rivers. And you could just anchor to the shore and live. And if you could find a place to park your car, that’s your home man. No rent, no nothing. So I found it as a squatter, living on a boat and all that wilderness area was just, it was heaven. Got a lot of music on cruise boats, and I played at the local restaurants, rock and roll. Just the more they drink, the more I make. I wasn’t about being spiritual at this point. I was about people.

Early dream of putting this boat together, stocking it, taking nautical courses, celestial navigation. Back then they didn’t– we didn’t have GPS. We had what they called Loran. Bought a brand new Loran unit. I had old time sailors tell me whatever electronic gear you put up for automatic helm and this and that. Make sure that when your batteries go dead and they will, that you aren’t addicted to that. You learn how to use a sextant. Learn how to use a compass and use the old wisdom. Because technology works until it doesn’t and then when it doesn’t and you don’t know how to back it up.

The plan was to sail my boat to Hawaii. My boat was ready. Okay, I’m down at the marina. I’m hanging out with all these sailors and everybody is bragging on how they’re gonna take these trips here and there. And I had a lot of people that said they’d wanna sail with me, and it came right down to it. None of ’em were there. And it was good because I don’t think any of ’em had the temperament. I could see if I got in trouble out there, these people would be part of the problem. I would rather deal with it alone and perish rather than having these people cursing me for why they’re dying.

Because I knew what I was going up against. I was flirting with death. So the next goal was to go down the coast because I didn’t have anybody to help me. So I sailed out from Friday Harbor for the last time with my dog. My poor dog. I knew we were gonna be at sea and she was gonna have to poop, and she was trained not to do it on the boat. And so I nailed a branch to a deck that was easy just to wash off. And so I started down the coast. So I’m sailing out there and I’m out a hundred miles. And no matter what you’re doing right or wrong, the current will take you where you wanna go. And after about six days, the poor dog, she just– finally she looked all guilty.

One morning when I got up and I looked over, here’s a pile she had to tiptoe off and right on that branch. And so at that point, I let her know it’s o– that’s where you do your thing. I tried to explain it to her, but dogs don’t quite get that. At night, I just dropped the sail and I get up the next morning and the sails would be all combobulated, but I’d check where I was and I would make, I was 10 miles in the direction I wanted to go. So I put in at Trinidad, California. Man, I came through the fog and I was sailing at night and it was a full moon coming through this big thin sail I had for light winds. And I have to navigate my way into this harbor where there’s a bunch of fishing boats there. I was the only sailboat there. It was this fishing village.

And there are a lot of crashes on that beach. There’s a river that goes out and it eddy’s people in. Finally got all settled in and got in there without hitting anything. And so I went to shore and sent off a couple letters at the post office and went uptown and I was getting used to walking around on land and I stayed there a few days and took a few pictures of the boat from up at the lighthouse. When the smoke cleared it was kind of interesting to see where I’d ended up.

I’m seeing this as spiritual food. And I’m an adventure, so I doing a journey and doing an experiment is okay with me. I don’t have to wee with a thing. I’m just curious about the workings of life and where I fit in it. When I was on my way back out to sea and I got out about 10 miles in the middle of the night while I was sleeping. The boat was pulled into some shallow water and I could feel it was getting shallow cause the wave’s getting steep. And that’s what woke me up.

And I realized I was in trouble. So I started out my outboards and, okay, I’m outta here, you know the outboard, I’m going up this wave, I’m going up this wave, and now I’m going backwards. And outboards just didn’t add the power to push this big boat. And I start going backwards in the back of the boat and the outboards, everything underwater.

So my dog was down in one hull and everything was closed up as far as air vents and the hatch, and I opened it up and I was calling her to come out of there and it was dark. I couldn’t see. And I’m thinking maybe she’s better there. And the fact that she didn’t come was fine. So I just closed the hatch to get forward to drop this anchor before I’m in into the beyond return. I thought it might be wise to get a call out to the Coast Guard. So, I did a mayday and that’s where I had to deal with my fear. Cause I knew I was in– I couldn’t pretend that I was in trouble. And this was beyond me, I’m going down.

My options other than dropping his anchor are gone. And I got the call out. Coast Guard didn’t hear it, but a fisherman heard it and relayed it to them. And at that point, the waves, it just lifted the boat and it hit the bottom, and then I hung on and did it again. And these bolts and everything, holding these beams to these two holes start popping. Ripped the cabin off the boats in his wave, went in the boat and sucked out my guitar, my bed, my clothes, my books. Cause I lived on my boat, everything I own. This big wave came up and there’s just a moment of silence before it does its thing.

It’s just like, boom and all hell breaks loose. And I mean, it like to knock the eyeballs outta your head. It hit you so hard. And I hung out of the boat and then the next wave just knocked me right off the boat and I was in the water. At that moment I saw that I was pretty much done. I wasn’t gonna survive this. So I said out loud, is this it for me? Because I was gonna suck in a lung of water and just do, just get it over with. And my little voice spoke to me and said, David, you must participate in your own salvation.

Participating in your own salvation, I just, at that, I perked up and I started pulling on loose lines, and I found a line that was wrapped around part of the keel. I pulled too hard, it come off, but if I just, was gentle with it. It would pull me over to the boat and I got up on that hull, which was upside down, and the dog was in there. So I’m patting on the hull and waves are breaking over the top of me. And I’m talking to the dog as if she was alive and it seemed like she was. I didn’t get that she was dead. And so I’m talking to her, we’re gonna do it, we’re gonna make it, and I’m pounding on the hull. I jumped off the boat and an under tow, pulled me out the sea and as I went past my– the rudder. There’s a space in between.

I got my hands in there and then the next wave, I didn’t put my feet down. I rode the wave and it threw me up on the beach. Finally, I crawled up on shore. My concern was my dog. She didn’t deserve this. She’s doing what I’m saying. I’m kind of having a dialogue, prayer. It’s not dear Heavenly Father, save my dog. It wasn’t like that. It was like, this isn’t right, help me, help me. The other hull that was all bashed up floated up and had an old oar and I, there’s a fracture and I opened it up and here comes my dog. She comes out of there and then here comes a helicopter.

The guy lands and he comes out, he says, are you the Free Spirit? And I looked at all the debris up and down this beach. I realized, yeah, I am, I’m the Free Spirit, not the boat me. And it was always like that. I thought I was naming the boat. I was just naming myself. And so they swooped me up.

I watched these two hulls that I’d worked on for so many years and made, wrapped my life around, be laying there on the beach. I had hypothermia. I was in the water probably– it was probably two o’clock in the morning and I didn’t hit the beach till maybe 4 or 5:00 AM The sun was just coming up. And I’m more spirit than body. Feeling my body to get reference points on am I alive? Cause the fog was there and I could see my boat and you could see light coming through the fog, which you couldn’t see the sun.

Have you ever got in a situation with your buddies where you could have been killed and instead of freaking out, it’s just you end up laughing? Well, that’s where I was. I’m alive. I’m alive. When I got back to where I lived on the island, people were giving me food and clothes when they heard about it. I had people stopping when I’m walking around or stopping their car, writing up checks for me. The church asked me to come in and share my story. He thought it was like baptism. And I could see where Christian cons get started from a genuine experience and then you start milking it, and I almost started milking it.

So I had a chance to go back to the site cuz the sheriff had a bunch of stuff. They collected my guitars, stuff like that and they logged it in. Said come on down, pick it up. And took a hike out to where the boat was with some friends. Finally found where the boat crashed. We found the wreckage. And right next to my wreckage was a dead seal about the same size as me. And my dog and I were sitting in the skeleton and they were taking some pictures. And I’m looking at that seal I’m going, just for some reason that could have been me. That was the end of that. I left there and I had another boat I lived on, and finally I sold that and came back here to Arizona.

I was in Lake Havasu when this journalist got ahold of me, who’d been looking for me for years. He found like 50 David Bixby’s. And he said, what works have you done? So I rattled off some jingles I did and some stuff after that. Finally, he couldn’t help me. He says, do you know anything– does the word Quetzacoatl mean anything to you? I say yeah, I put on an album called Ode to Quetzacoatl and he goes, you’re it. You’re the guy. He asked me if I had these albums. I says, no, I don’t have any of ’em. He says, you too bad. You don’t have a bunch of ’em. You’d be a rich man.

Do you have any idea that this album is fetching $3,000 in Japan? He says, you remember the song? I said, well, yeah, kind of. He says, I’m gonna send you a CD of them. I want you to listen to ’em again, cuz I think someday you might be doing concerts and you need to learn this stuff. This happened in 2007. So he came over to Lake Havasu and got my story, found original albums that were really good shape to do a reissue, and he bought those out of his own money. He paid a thousand dollars for a set that hadn’t been open. And he sent that set over to Spain, Gerson Records. And they gave me a real fair business deal and gave me a nice, healthy chunk of cash up front, which I’ve never, everybody’s been stealing this stuff from me.

I had resistance to listening to it cuz I had some hurt and pain covered up and some embarrassment for letting cult leaders surrendering my will to that. Drug song was the worst one to get used to because it described hell. My hell, the hell that I’m responsible for, the hell that I created. The hell I can’t blame on the devil. I earned this. And I’d sit down, I’d listen to it and turn it off and I’d come back and listen to it and turn it off. I couldn’t even finish the song. It just felt, I felt nauseous. And now I’m having to kind of peel off these layers of protection and open up this wound again and this discouragement.

Phony stuff I believed in. After a while, I started looking at it like this, okay, this is somebody else. This is not me. Listen to it objectively. And I started to hear things. I go, yeah, I forgot that. It was a psalm. It brought me back. And then listen to the rest of the songs were all liberation songs. They were therapy, and it pulled me out. It really did. And it reconnected to me to the parts that I miss about who I was.

So when people tell me this record has done something for them, I know what they’re talking about because it did something for me, brought me back. I was invited to go to Detroit in 2011. So I went ahead and played all of that music that I knew at the time that I’d rehearsed. It was like, 15 songs. Okay. When I got up, I said, how many people had heard of the Quetzacoatl album? They all put up their hand. I felt safe. Well, I certainly missed putting myself in a position where people got value outta what I was doing. I am servant to it. I didn’t start it. I didn’t bring it back. I didn’t research me out.

I didn’t write the, when I listened to what other people say, I gotta listen to what they’re saying cuz they’re telling me there’s something there that it is not about David Bixby, it’s about all of us. I had a guy from Greece do wanna do an album for me. He starts saying, we want more dark stuff. More dark stuff. You’re known for dark stuff, moody, dark loner, you’re off the grid kind of guy. Underground, dark stuff. I says, is there a market for that crap? And he scolded me.

He says, all of us have pain, and when you describe it, it allows us to deal with it. It’s therapy. He says there’s a hurting world out there, and you’re one of the few people that have spoken the truth. The truth can be negative depending on where you stand. The truth isn’t this big, flowery thing and an encounter with God isn’t a big flowery thing. It’s very, it turns you inside out. I don’t know if God is walking around in the garden, you go hold his hands. Maybe the earth is a garden and we are God’s creation. What we think we are as a body and mind who we are is lost inside.

How would I like to be remembered as someone who stayed true to what he knew to be true and someone who didn’t abandon themselves because it was convenient. Someone who didn’t buy into the worldly ways, after seeing that there is another side. Someone who knows that he’s a spirit and not a body. The body is something that I have. It’s not who I am. That’s what I am. What I am as a guitar player. Who I am is the music that comes out.

The album is a journey, and that’s what Quetzacoatl is. It’s introspection, it’s soul searching. It’s looking beyond where humans have gone. And it’s hoping there’s something there. And the truth may be there’s nothing there and you’re gonna have to face that. There may not be a God, it might be an illusion that we’ve been fed. And we’re buying into it and because we believe it, things can manifest to make us think it. It’s that.