One day, Nathan Angelo ran into a girl. The girl. The one who got away.
"There was a girl I couldn't get over in college," he said, "and I saw her one day at the airport with her fiance, and they were flying off to get married, and I was going to the same place."
The next day, he wrote "Forgetting You," a track on his latest album, "Follow Your Heart."
"There are a few people in life who are tough to get over, and that song has been a reminder of that," said the Atlanta-based singer/songwriter.
Angelo, 28, a 2006 graduate of Lee University, will play Rhythm & Brews on Tuesday. It's one of the venues he played early in his career, he said, before releasing his first album, "Through Playing Me."
He got his start in church. His father was a minister, and he would sing in the choirs. He and his brother spent their years in high school leading music at the church.
"I had experience being onstage, learning how to be sensitive to what goes over and what doesn't, learning how to find a home on the stage."
Indeed, music, he said, is a second home.
Angelo counts vulnerability and honesty among the keys to songwriting and performing.
The best songs, he said, came from very honest points in his life. "For whatever reason, the art matched the honesty, which is not always the case."
"Forgetting You" is an honest song, as is "So Much I Don't Know," which he calls a coming-of-age song.
"I've spent a lot of my life proving what I know and realizing that as I get older and older, I realize more and more what I don't know and being comfortable with that."
Angelo is part of an unofficial fraternity of sorts, a brotherhood of young singer/songwriters, including Andy Davis, with whom he'll be performing Tuesday.
"He's become a good friend," Angelo said."
He said he appreciates the work of singer/songwriter Ryan Tedder, who is the lead singer for the band OneRepublic. "He's got a great sense of melody and lyric."
Raised up on a lot of Elton John, Beatles, Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson, Angelo said he's currently exploring the work of Billy Joel.
"His 'Stranger' record is just slaying me."
Between tour stops, Angelo is back in the studio. His upcoming album, he said, is influenced by Motown. "There's going to be a good bit of a tip of the hat," he said. "I look back to a lot of the classics."
He said he respects the lack of overproduction on some of the earlier music.
"What I'd like to to contribute to a degree is the realness and humanity of music, not always being perfect."
Holly Leber is a reporter and columnist for the Life section. She has worked at the Times Free Press since March 2008. Holly covers “everything but the kitchen sink" when it comes to features: the arts, young adults, classical music, art, fitness, home, gardening and food. She writes the popular and sometimes-controversial column Love and Other Indoor Sports. Holly calls both New York City and Saratoga Springs, NY home. She earned a bachelor of arts ...