From the recording 4 Footprints in the Sand
“Footprints In The Sand” is from 1974 and stays fairly true to the original version. In fact, I relearned the main piano part verbatim. My material during those pre-college years was clearly non-commercial, with neo-classical chord progressions, complex time signatures, and through-composed forms that often lacked choruses.
In “Footprints in the Sand,” the wandering soul is “a pacer in my mind:” a creative force, wherever it comes from, many believe it’s “God given.” Here, the “wandering soul” or “pacer,” IS imagination… “Find your own dreams inside your head. Imagination is never dead.” The song provides an extension of “Open the People,” opening oneself up, or as the second verse in “Footprints” suggests, to “… see for yourself what comes from within.”
The piano introduction to “Footprints in the Sand” wakes the dreamer in “Wandering Soul” with another variation of the “piano/time motive.” But the seemingly regular hands of time are soon interrupted by irregular measures of 5 beats… the perception of time is altered, as it is during a psychedelic experience… in “the land of red, green, and blue.” The natural kinetic tendency to move one’s body to the beat of the rhythmic cycle is lost—out of sync. The song is not grounded but instead leaves the body floating, in time, and perhaps lifted off the ground… to “the heavens…” if they can “be found again.”