Monday, June 13, 2011

Lost in the Shuffle -or- (still) Listening

I'm actually writing this for myself. I've never gotten terribly personal on often I'm writing about someone else, something else, some place else...or even further into the intangible, writing about music.

Which, as Mr. Costello's echoing words in my head have never stopped reminding me, is about as feasibly translatable/comprehendable as "dancing about architecture."

I'd really love to indulge surreal satire here - and fabricate fantastically funny and frightening epilogue-esque explanations, -but motorcycle crashes aren't funny, alien abduction is a tired cliche and I've not yet made any LP's for you to experiment with playing backwards to decode secret messages I've left behind.

I'm not going anywhere. Yet. That I know of.

It's more of a "back-in-5-minutes" sign, left on the ye olde blogshoppes's front door.

I'm not taking off my writer's apron, but I am wandering out, away from the kitchen and out -down the street, for a little while. I'll leave some stew simmeirng on the burner for you...just make sure to stir it here and there and when you're done, seal up the leftovers and store em in the fridge.

I need some kind of vision quest. I need to just put headphones on again and listen to music for the sake of listneing to music. I don't ever want to become numbed or unfeeling; I don't ever, nor have I ever, just put a record on to churn out a review. But still, reviews can feel dirty, hollow - and writing too many of them can be anesthetizing to the tingly receptors in one's heart, the ones that palpitate when you hear that perfect sound...

The thing is: I've been posting every day (sometimes twice) for.....I've lost count. (Or was too busy writing the next thing to count). I just want to try, once, or twice, to listen to a record and not write about it. Oh, I'll be listening. But I'll be writing something else...

My self-examination was spurred by my being moved by passages from Steve Martin's memoir, Born Standing Up, where he talks about the depression he fell into, in 1981, tied to a soul-crushing tour schedule. His words, like "exhaustion," "isolation," and "creative ennui" just happened to scare the shit out of me.

"I couldn't imagine abandoning something I had worked so hard to craft," he wrote, about his stand-up act. He admits that he "saw that the only way I could go, at best, was sideways. I wasn't singing songs that you hum forever, I was doing comedy, which is as ephemeral as the daily newspaper."

I'm not writing songs. And,... the word: "Ephemeral" also scares me. Or, it at least makes me want to go out into the desert and start sculpting something, ...or at least makes me want to seclude myself in a Paris loft with a typewriter and a bottle of absinthe and not permit myself outside until I'd churned 50 pages of mind-melting profundity and heart-swooning majesty, or at least makes me want to go to Vegas and have some kind of soul-searching lost weekend.

What I believe:
-in love
-in myself
-in Detroit music.
-and, of course, in my friends, (see, above).

I believe my dad is hilarious. And I believe my mom is inspiringly compassionate. And I believe in broken cliches like: music soothes the savage beast --and that music is the universal language.

But I don't ever want to even have a hinted inkling that what I'm doing, even here-now--as I type these words, is "ephemeral."

"Music is essentially what memories feel like," my sister once said.

It can, thus, give feeling to the ephemeral.

But...... the risk: "Oh yeah, I remember when I first heard that song... I was sitting at the coffee shop, in the middle of writing-about-that-song, when I first...heard it..." ....oh.

I'm going to go get lost in some delicious, psychedelic, transcendent, head-hurting, heart-wringing, feet-moving, eye-opening memories...

By just listening.

"In my 27th year I set out to confront my fears and found the role of a lifetime..." -Cass McCombs - "Hermit's Cave"


I'll still post here when the spirit moves me and that might end up being consistent, but it might also end up being more sporadic. I'm going up for air, that's all. But before I dry off, I'm cannon-balling back into the water.

I know I'll be writing about Urgh...
and more to come, still...

1 comment:

Mikel O.D. said...

I hope our conversation didn't set these wheels in motion. But I will say sometimes it helps to take a breather to remember what your lungs are working for.