Songwriter inspired by Paul McCartney writes song for Orlando victims
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Joshua Walther told AXS.com July 19 he took up writing music after an encounter with Paul McCartney when the former Beatle played with his band Phase 5 at a graduation party last year for McCartney's stepson, Arlen Shevell. At the event, McCartney sang “I Saw Her Standing There” and a song he improvised. Walther called it the “thrill of a lifetime.” 

He recalled, “He had us play a blues progression and he improved a song about his stepson's graduation.” The band then went through the catalog of Beatles songs, finally deciding on “I Saw Her Standing There,” which the Beatle sang with them. The event left quite an impression on Walther.

“After getting the chance to meet and play with Paul McCartney last year, I was inspired to start writing my own music,” he said in an email. “The thrill of watching the legend write a song on the spot with us was electric. I have spent the last year traveling between Florida and Nashville to write with as many other writers as possible. I recently felt inspired to write the song 'Orlando.'” The song is available for download on CD Baby. The song video is on this page. He says all proceeds from the song go to the Orlando Pulse Victims Fund on Go Fund Me.

He says the song was written a few days after the shooting in Orlando in June and finished with Alissa Moreno in Nashville a few weeks ago. “I wrote it for my own therapy much like a journal piece,” he says. “After sharing it with a few close friends they encouraged me to record it.”

But he says the song is about more than the tragedy in Orlando. “Although I wrote this about Orlando, I believe it applies in many situations,” he said. “I know all too well that in hard times the support of other people is all that we have. Don't remain silent because you don't agree with someone's lifestyle or political views. Always say something. If you don't know what to say 'I'm sorry' or 'are you ok?' always work. Don't let your silence cause even more pain.”