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Our first song, co-written from scratch, which surprised both of us, since Cheryl had never written any lyrics to accompany music. In fact, she had never even considered it!

We had just arrived in S’Agaro Spain for the beginning of our “remote retreat” together in 2000. On the flight over we had both read two interesting books: "Why Christianity Must Change or Die" and Maria von Franz’s book about Jungian symbols in Fairy Tales.

On our first evening there, as if by magic, the music emerged. Inspired by what we had read, Em strummed the traveling guitar in the kitchen while we were fixing dinner. The idea came to Cheryl to write lyrics about this new beginning of our lives together. In an incredible “flow” of writing, the song was finished. It definitely set the stage for all that was to come. The music felt like a gift to us on our life-changing journey. It was so much more than we ever imagined possible.

"Never Sleep" was also the first song that we professionally recorded with Tom Tomasello, upon our return to the States.

Check out our related story at Uncommon Promise

And our video called "Storytellers"


Please tell that story
one more time
I long to hear those words

Please tell that fairy tale
"Once upon a time. . . "
Sometimes the ending’s really all
that I need to hear

So close your eyes
Stay safe within protecting walls
Go to sleep
Guarded by your nights

But I can’t sleep
For these walls were built for someone else
Not for me
I won’t sleep - never sleep

Who will save the day
Where’s my ever-after life
Is there magic captured in the pages there
If not, then where

Who will show the way
Where is my enchanted life
Is the poet disguised as a pawn or knight
A king or me

I’ll write my story
for the first time
The script and cast are new
Some say that fairy tales are real
Just once upon a time my time

I can believe - it’s true


from Never Sleep, track released January 1, 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 - S'Agaro on Spain's Costa Brava


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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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