Tuesday, February 28, 2006

If only passion could be used as currency.

Time to make a quick judgement call.

Do I write what I feel like writing and risk upsetting people close to me?

I evaluate the risk and decide how big it is, how much it means to me not to upset someone I care about. I weigh this against my need for the sort of catharsis that, as I know from soming up to a year's worth of experience, only blogging can bring.

I can say without hesitation that it means a lot to me not to upset someone I care about.

I do, however, feel that the catharsis afforded by writing here is one that I cannot find elsewhere.

I do not dwell on the implications of this fact.

I want to write about my career.

Perhaps with all this talk of uspetting people one might perhaps have assumed I was going to talk about my love life, my friendships or my family. Perhaps my housemates or my work colleagues, the lady in the shop around the corner from work. I would not want to upset any of these people. Particularly the latter. Speaking English might not be her forté, but we have a relationship the delicate balance of which I would not wish in any way to disrupt.

Without going into detail about the specifics of the situations, which I am opting not to at this moment, I feel the need to reassert to myself what it is that I want out of my career. I am only doing this for myself.

I want to sing beautiful music, with real instruments, on stages. Stages with lights and microphones. Which, I suppose, goes without saying. I want people to listen to what I do and what my band does and what WE do. I want them to listen and think to themselves that this is something that means something, that is evocative of something.

Sometimes I listen to music and it moves me. Or, more specifically, it moves something in me. Simon and Garfunkel does that to me, as does Jeff Buckley. Leonard Cohen's Famous Blue Raincoat. Hallelujah. I actually prefer the Jeff Buckley version. The Elgar Cello Concerto. Billie Holiday, Strange Fruit. There's this jazz singer called Carol Kidd who sings Autumn In New York and merges it seamlessly into My Funny Valentine and it makes me want to laugh and cry every single time I hear it. So many different versions of Summertime. There's this band called Feist whose album I was given a copy of, and it is wonderful. http://www.arts-crafts.ca/feist/.

There is all this music that amazes me. All these musicians who are imbued with the capacity to make me feel like my soul is too big for my body and I might just explode, or take off, or disintegrate. Jill Scott, the live album. Rachelle Ferrel.

There have been a couple of times in my life, perhaps more than a couple, when I have felt that feeling from something I've been doing. From music that is coming from me. It's a sort of tantric, circular ecstasy.

I want, for the rest of my life, to do that.

I know I am blessed because I can do it. I have done it.

I know what it is to feel that, and it is so addictive and perfect that I cannot do anything that risks eliminating that possibility.

I simply cannot. I will not settle for not-close-enough.

I am stubborn, perhaps. I don't care. If you had felt what I feel when it is right you wouldn't settle for second best, either.

People encourage me to take every opportunity that is presented to me, to snap up every offer because it's a 'way in'. That, my friends, is utter shit. I refuse to do something that seems from the outside to be in the same ball park as what it is that I want to do with my life. If it takes me twice as long to do it the way I want to, with the dignity and integrity I will feel from having refused to compromise on those things that I hold onto like precious jewels, then so be it. I can see happiness and fulfillment, and I am beginning to be able to to trace the outline of the path down which I must travel to be able to achieve it.

I sometimes feel cursed because I feel like I have a calling, and I cannot waver from that, even if it means compromising in so many other ways.

Deep down, though, I know am lucky.

I will not be moved.


Anonymous Dave said...

Want more - truly great music? Listen to Richard Thompson.

Here's a starter!

RT for beginners

"Richard Thompson has a window on the human soul, and he can write poignant and memorable songs that touch on universal truths."

Interesting blog .. :O)

12:01 pm

Blogger Dancinfairy said...

Your strength of character, intergrity and determination to do something that you are dying to do but to only do it on your terms blows me away.

I was listening to those few tracks from your website that I downloaded in my car on the way to work today and they always manage to put a smile on my face. So you are sharing your gift already. I promise to come and see you live one day!

12:34 pm

Anonymous Paul said...

Damn straight. Keep it that way, Léonie. Your gift is far too precious to allow corruption. Enjoy the amazing things you can do and take succour from the fact that, however long it takes, you will get where you want to be.

9:32 pm

Anonymous Euan said...

I keep meaning to burn you some Imogen Heap. If you like Feist I think you'll like Imogen Heap. Everyone will like Imogen Heap.


11:41 pm

Anonymous Richard said...

Just been to your music site and spent a very happy 7 minutes ish listening to your Funny Valentine... ideal to destress after the day I've had - keep at it please!

1:13 am

Blogger Miss Devylish said...

Ooh I love Imogen Heap too.. not sure what it is about a few of her songs.. but I've been so mellow lately they're just lovely. Someone here locally, Brandi Carlile, does a beautiful version of Hallelujah.. I link to her in one of my recent posts if you ever care to check her out.. I have two classically favorite songs I love tho: At Last, by Etta James.. and the Somewhere Over The Rainbow/It's A Wonderful World medley by this Hawaiian ukelele player from a long time ago.. I always forget his name, but it's just gorgeous. My friends used both at their wedding.

And I know exactly what you mean about wanting to move people. I don't doubt you do.. Your voice is stunning, really.. I hope one day you'll be so big I won't have to travel overseas to see you. It'll happen girl..

2:02 am

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7:34 am


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