ALBANY — If you’ve watched MTV, A&E, CBS, NBC or pretty much any other major cable network, you know who David Tyo is.
The New School Center for Media teacher and department head, who has worked with some of the most prolific people in the game, has made quite the name for himself producing and mixing music for favorite television shows. He’s a chameleon of sound; regardless of what companies want, he’s able to deliver. But, Tyo is more than that. He writes music too — music that speaks to his soul.
Tyo is releasing a new single, “Long Way Home,” on Sept. 2. It will be released on all major digital platforms and will also have a lyric video released the same day on YouTube. For Tyo, this project isn’t about money and fame. In fact, he doesn’t care if he ever becomes a superstar. It’s a form of communication.
“The writing process for ‘Long Way Home’ evolved into a story about my good friend’s wife, who passed away during a rare surgery,” he said. “While I wasn’t there for the last part of [her] journey, it’s my imagined story of what she and her husband went through.”
Tyo drew on the constant driving she had to do, traveling from her home to Georgetown University Medical Center. The couple spent months on the road, with Tyo offering support. Once the inspiration hit him to write another song — oddly from a chord heard in a popular country song written by a friend — his organic writing process naturally drew him to his friend’s journey.
“When I showed my friend the song, he couldn’t believe how similar it was to their experience,” Tyo said. “He said it felt like I had been right beside them the whole time.”
Tyo continued writing a song about someone else’s experience was “nerve-wracking” because it’s so personal and raw.
“Writing for myself is much different than writing for the networks because I have so much more freedom,” he said. “I don’t have a skeleton of what people want, so I’m able to see what feels authentic to me.”
Tyo is excited about the release, but mostly motivated to keep producing and building relationships.
“The song’s overall meaning is to tell the people you love that you love them and not to take a day for granted,” he concluded. “If this song speaks to one person and inspires them to call a loved one and remind them you love them, it’s done its job. We only have so much time here. We have to use it the best we can.”