Seeder’s Testimony to Love
“Testimony” is a love ballad, it isn’t going to be on the album, no one wanted to shelve the recording, instead the band were in favour of letting it stand alone, a simple single to get things rolling again.
Penned by Mic Hardwick, in the wayback machine. The original recording and film clip were made possible by the collaborative energies of creative friends. Recorded, videoed to tape, pre-internet, the clip was never “officially” released; it sat forlornly on the shelf, though Underfoot Records did eventually slip it on YouTube a while back. Years passed, life danced somersaults with time and our dreams, bands changed, the world changed and Michael decided to rework his love song with his new band Seeder, and, when the final album selection was made, Testimony didn’t make the cut. Not because no one liked it, it simply didn’t fit sonically with the other songs. So it was sent out on it’s own, dropping into sound streams in Underfoot’s February Love Bomb, free at last.
Michael wrote Testimony shortly after he and Deanne were married, it has journeyed with them for 32 years. Often requested by friends at shows and often sung along with by the audience. There’s something warm, simple and genuine about it that definitely appeals, particularly when played live., and as Deanne will admit it’s cool to have a song written for you. It tickles her when she hears him play it. Yet it also makes her wonder if it’s about her anymore? Is that “girl De” still in here, perhaps camouflaged under the wrinkles? Apparently she can still flash the affronted Red-Headed Dagger look of her youth, which still makes Michael laugh at her, she proffers “and that still infuriates me and that still melts the fury. Many Sunday afternoons later here we both are, still on the grass. We’ve raised a family and buried parents, we still hold hands when we go walking, and we still giggle when our cold feet meet in the dark under the sheets. We are a witness to each other’s lives, for better and for worse, nobody knows me as well as him, and he’s my best friend.”
The Latin root of Testimony is “witness”, as in an eyewitness testimony. A solemn declaration of fact with a hand on the bible and one on the heart, the “I swear” with no fingers crossed. The heart doesn’t lie; perhaps the odd hormonal rush confuses it at times, but it means well. In many ways when you get to know Michael Hardwick, you can see this song as his foundation; it’s at the root of him, love and family first. It’s his Testimony, so this piece of him has to be out there for the rest of his songs to follow. In a panel interview on the iconic Blah Blah Blah Show back in 1988, Michael joked with Andrew Denton about marriage and how much it meant to him. So perhaps Testimony Version 2 is like a renewal of their vows. Worth doing simply for themselves and also to affirm to friends and family and the great “out there” that long-term love is possible. It’s worth trying for, it is worthwhile, and it can stay vital and juicy, and it seems like a breath ago that it all began. Thirty years on Michael and Deanne are still married, their hearts do stand as Testimony. They are connected like old vines with deep roots, sweet fruit and so many memories. “Testimony” mark 2 has now evolved into family creation, this time around one of the offspring shot and edited the music video, and that feels so cool.