In Thin Air

In-Thin-Air-LacingThis song was written after Em’s solo pilgrimage to Barcelona, and our subsequent trip to Europe together—inspired by the Gaudí Colonia Guell church. We began writing about the spiritual connection we felt with Gaudí’s famous “hanging model” as a way to imagine life’s harmony. We saw it as a metaphor for our changing partnership—a life together that is natural and true, peaceful and in harmony, creating from the inside out—organic in every way.

The Gaudí hanging model

Shortly after Em returned, Cheryl said that she wanted to sing harmony. Just out of the blue, she said it! “In Thin Air” was the first song that we sang in harmony together. We were amazed at how much fun we had doing it. From that point forward, we decided that all of our music would be rendered in harmony where the two voices would blend to become a unique voice—unmistakably the sound of the new partnership.

Back Story




When will I learn
How all the pieces fit
How to make sense of it
When will I learn

Learn how to sing, how to dance, how to wing
My way through the clouds on the wind
And when the wind stops
And everything stands perfectly still

I drop like a rock at a point in a web of silk thread
In thin air

Build foundations of brown brick, free-formed
Pleat the walls to stand sturdy and true
Glaze ceramics of deep blue vivid green
Intense red, and pure white too

When will I learn
Life is a rendering
Life is surrendering
When will I learn

Learn how to speak, how to hear, how to seek
The answers to questions within
And when questions stop
And everything is perfectly clear

I drop like a rock at a point in a web of silk thread
In thin air . . . in thin air

I catch my breath
I stop to catch my breath . . . In thin air


From Never Sleep, released 01 January 2003
Cheryl Martlage – Lyrics and vocals
Emerson Martlage – Music, guitar and vocals
Tom Tomasello – Producer/Arranger
Jim Bruno – Vocal producer
Mr Toad’s San Francisco – Mastering
Inspiration – Gaudí’s Colonia Guell church