Slept in till noon. It is pouring here at the lake house. cliffy cat is doing some carpentry on a picture frame. Boo boo as always is studying some new course she is taking. ‘oh you taking a class in something? how out of the ordinary!’ we laugh. She is always taking a class in something. I am out on the back covered porch, taking in the peace and quiet of the pounding rain. Writing. always writing. and thinking. always thinking.
I sit on the back porch and write, watching and listening to the rain. Soaking it into me. city life is so hard is one of the thoughts that come up. Have to find a way to still live in the city or close to the city but still live outside of it though. I need the woods. I need nature.
Last night I sat with cliffy till the wee small hours of the morning, talking and drinking and smoking in the thoughts till there was nothing left to say. He shared with me his appreciation for our music. how often times there is a transcendence CD in rotation in his car along with all the others. how the songwriting is as good or better sometimes than anything else he listens to, and how much he loves the vocals. ( I still always find myself a bit surprised when people speak about my vocals being good, because I started off as such a bad singer, has taken me years to even consider that I could ever sing well. (and indeed would still contend and do that I don’t sing well, I know.)) How as he purchases each new album from our back catalogue he is always amazed how good we are, how much he loves our work. He finds himself stumped as to why we are not huge, why we are not a household name in the music business. he rants and raves. Throws out his favorite songs from each album… he is a huge music lover. He may own every good album ever made. so it is indeed a compliment coming from a guy like him. And I don’t even mind. I observe with one part of me how the other part of me doesn’t even mind anymore when peeps are complimenting my music. that’s different. It used to make me feel uncomfortable. I even enjoy it. I celebrate in it. I like my music now. I mean, I really like it. i like doing it. I enjoy listening to it. I like that others like it. it all makes me feel good. I even like when other people don’t like it in a weird way. (in fact it is those individuals that steer me to venture into different directions now and then.)
As he ponders the reasons why I haven’t become a huge success after all these great albums I offer that perhaps it is just luck or fate or destiny and not much to worry about. I make enough to keep doing it after all, and with each new album we gain more and more fans, such as himself for example. And besides, I have made a career out of doing exactly what I want to do, never taking any advice from the upper-ups in the biz. That itself could be a big part of it. I’ve just never been as interested in pleasing others or mass success as I have been in just accomplishing my goals artistically, feeding my own cravings and desires. For twenty years now my family and friends have been pressuring me to make just one “commercial” album, but I wouldn’t know how if I tried. I’m not even sure what that means. And I’m not sure it wouldn’t kill me if I did break it down and try to figure it out.
Somehow I have found myself understanding that I have walked through the fire with my music and art now. I am on the other side. I am so ecstatically in love with my music and art now, with my creativity, with my quest to continue to explore it and adventure in it, and to achieve exactly what I want to with each new album, as a complete whole work of art. It is as though, yes, I have walked through the fire. And I stand at the other side, cleansed and rebirthed and shining, just happy as all hell that I do what I do and that I can give myself and a few others these gifts.
We also speak about the importance of releasing albums as whole complete works of art, as zeke and Jodiach and I spoke of the other night as well. how important it is even in the new climate of the business now focusing on singles for radio, that we continue to focus on whole albums as singular works of art. That is why we spend so much time and energy and money on artwork still in our camp. Because we believe in the album as a whole. As a statement. As its own little package, or message. Each song an integral part of the package as a whole. Buck the industry. Fuck the industry. Just keep creating your little world of wonder. That’s my motto.
He then tells me a little bit about his marriage and divorce. Cliffy cat is about twenty years older than I am. I share with him that is one of the reasons why I have never been married. Just never wanted to take the risk of divorce I guess. He shares about how just after he purchased this big beautiful house on the lake in the woods he came home to discover his wife was sleeping with their yard man. how he spent the next six months in shock, sitting on the couch staring into nothingness crying for hours, feeling very alone and betrayed. I can say nothing. I can only sit there and listen and smile and feel with him. yes my brother. being human. Isn’t it a curious and marvelous thing after all. we are indeed the envy of the angels.
As I drift off to sleep this night, I reflect on the weeks earlier events, and my life as a whole, how I have adamantly avoided ever allowing myself to even consider marriage forever to another. How it had/has been as much for reasons of protecting myself from such a fate, as it has been to protect all the wonderful girls I have had the privilege of being with from me inflicting such a fate on them. I would never want to cause pain like that for someone. one day I will be ready for the great leap into the forever unknown. I am sure. But not yet. my heart is too much the adventurer still. always falling in love. I will know when it is time.
Isn’t it curious though I think that in times like that it isn’t so much the missing of the other person that strikes us so deeply as it is the raw feelings of abandonment? For once a person does that to you, you don’t really want to be with them anyway. But you just cannot get over the feeling of being hurt by their callous betrayal of what you considered so sacred. And yet, we are all guilty of this betrayal of another at one time or another in our lives. No one is innocent. No is to blame.
Writing ‘Song for Juno’ right now, for Juliet’s six year old daughter. I first made note to write that song for her and for the upcoming Girls album back in December of last year. it took me ten months to find it in my head, from out in the ethers. I never mind waiting for a song to come. Write down the title and eventually the song will come…
Current read: Meditation, by Sir Thomas More.