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The well-known art conservationist, Roberta Lapucci, had recently written a book and was sharing her experience of discovering an original Caravaggio while visiting Malta. One of the conservation panelists said that "genius sleeps within the materials."

Afterwards, we talked about the processes of conservation—how carefully the outer layers of soot and dirt must be taken away to uncover the masterpiece.

We decided that people are carefully concealed masterpieces. They're often very busy; never really taking the time to uncover significant details or aspects of themselves.They successfully keep everything hidden.

This song uses the conservation process as a metaphor for carefully uncovering our own best Self—uncovering our inner world.

Check out our related story at Uncommon Promise

And our video called "Rescue, Recover and Restore"


Within, covered over with age
There may be hidden under the dust
Beneath the crackled layers of paint
Sometimes there sleeps a masterpiece

Found out by chance
A glimpse of color never expected
Obscured, barely there
Something anyone could miss

Years of candle light
Leaving traces of smoke and wax
A closer look reveals
Not a copy, but real

Take a closer look inside
Where the masterpiece hides

What if, just by looking within
You find that you are one of a kind

Beneath the façade
A glimpse of subtle color detected
Narrowly hidden from view
Hardly anyone could miss
This Masterpiece


from Masterpiece, track released February 1, 2010
Cheryl Martlage - Lyrics and vocals
Emerson Martlage - Music, guitar and vocals
Mr Toad's San Francisco - Mastering
Inspiration - Roberta Lapucci, SACI Florence, Italy


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Cheryl and Emerson Martlage San Diego, California

At the age of 48, and after 25 years of marriage, we headed to a secluded town for 6 weeks, to create a new relationship and begin again.

When we arrived as if by magic, we co-wrote our first song ever— "Never Sleep," evoking the mystery and magic of the new adventure. Twenty years later, we're still making music. Join us on our musical storytelling as the adventure continues to unfold
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