Writing, expressing myself. The storm just hit Tokyo and I am here alone in my apartment with a cup of coffee and the thunder cracking and gurgling in the sky outside. The lightning and the rain are my companions. I am happy to be the Hermit today. I am happy to be on my own and away from the world of Men.
For what its worth I believe in myself and what I am bringing to this world. I’ve just put out a new album and like a new parent I am wondering about its future. Can I really say it belongs to me? Not really. It belongs to the world now. It is learning how to survive in the world. It has the love of many people behind it and that has to be enough.
Hymns for Her. The name I gave it, has so much power within itself. Like the title alludes, it’s a collection of prayers from Man to Woman. It’s the courage it takes to look into that mirror and delve deeper into the Mystery of Being. It’s being able to hand over the reins and say, “hey babe, could you please drive for a while? I want to take a breather.” It’s a sanctuary where women can find solitude and solicitude from their fellow women. It’s not a “manhating” record, but it is an acknowledgement of all that’s come before and all that is, and all that could be, told through the voice of a female protagonist. The past has for the most part, been written from the point of view of the linear, logical, left brained masculine perspective, to the exclusion of the abstract, chaotic, right brained feminine.
So I am that protagonist. All the voices on this record are from characters that have chosen me to tell their story. I am but a medium for them. There are a few autobiographical songs like “Sarah”and “Fugly” but the others are from other sources, other muses. Sometimes I have to check in with myself and make sure I’m OK because it can be very exhausting not knowing “who” is at my wheel on any given day. No, I’m not schizophrenic or bipolar but I do think I can relate to people who are, whose personalities “slip” too easily and are therefore unpredictable.
I’m so lucky to have Music. It’s a place I can go whenever I need to escape the madness and the mess of everyday life. I’m also lucky to have the power of Words. Writing a song is one of the most thrilling, frustrating and rewarding things I know how to do, and each time it strikes, like lightning, I have to run outside with my lightning rod to try to catch the damn thing. And then it might not hit again at all and the song ends up being absorbed back into the ground, lost forever.
Recently I wrote a song I’ve called “Wide Open Spaces”. It seems to be following me around like a lamb. You know the kind of song that ends up being an ear-worm? That’s the one. So it’s definitely a keeper. It’s keeping me company and I’m grateful for that because often I find myself slipping into a melancholic funk that blocks out all hope and light. I live by myself, and that has its perks and its pitfalls. I guess I could say I’m an “extraverted-introvert” in that I enjoy being sociable and out there under the spotlight but I do need to withdraw (a lot) in order to maintain my sanity. I get panic attacks a lot out there in the wilderness of Tokyo where it can get super crowded and overwhelming, so my little loft is my sanctuary and my salvation.
Then there are the people I meet on my journeys, and they too influence me and my work. I am particularly attracted to people who are in possession of themselves. These people are fascinating and somewhat intimidating and I am like a traveller, keen to explore their territories. The song I mentioned above, is about a person that I’ve met recently. His landscape is like the Sahara Desert, interspersed with the most beautiful, lush, verdant Oases along the way, manifesting before me when I least expect it, when I feel like I’m about to expire from thirst. And then, like a mirage, it’ll vanish and I’ll be back on my camel, back into the vast expanse of my own consciousness.
Here are the lyrics to the song:
I’ve found some missing pieces to the puzzle
Since I met you
Since I met you
I don’t claim to know the answer to the riddle
So I’ll ask you
Yes I’ll ask you
Understanding can take so long
Wisdom only comes to some
Every lock must have its key
So watch me swing wide open when you smile at me
Wide Open Spaces
(Take me to)
Wide Open Spaces
(I want to show you)
Wide Open Spaces
I can’t remember who I was before I knew you
But that’s OK
Yes that’s OK
It took me so long to make these changes
Now I’m not the same
No I’m not the same
(PC & C)
I am only Human
Trying to get through it
Every little bit helps
To take me off the shelf
Blow off the dust
Cut away the rust
(Repeat the verses and PC)
At this stage of knowing this person I am facing the challenge of maintaining my own personality/borders for fear of being too caught up in his landscape. In Qabbalic lore, the Hebrew letter “Gimel” means “camel”. It is associated with The High Priestess card in the Tarot. This path (“the Uniting Intelligence”) traverses the treacherous terrain between the Sun Sphere of Tiphareth and the Crown Sphere of Kether, crossing the so-called Abyss of Daath. It is not a journey for the feint-hearted! So if I can rely on anything, it’ll be my camel! I must add that this person is certainly becoming a new inspiration for me. I hope he knows how much I admire him.