March 2nd, 2012

darkest leaf


woke up wanting to seal myself in a sonic bubble, with a particular urge to listen to nothing but coyote oldman albums. acoustic fasting, purging the sonic complexities in my environment with hours of nothing but flute and reverb. what is this, 2001?

of course, back then i was single so this played out unchecked: less and less television, no radio, barely any outside media at all; odd hours of deep night. the music went from coyote oldman to carlos nakai to riley lee to nawang khechog to, when all of that started feeling too burdened with activity and artifice, singing bowls over water, low bells in open air, then just water, then field recordings. nothing but field recordings. oceans, swamps, crickets, brooks and gentle rain showers. every few years i seem to need a sonic detox. just the simplest recordings, the most earnest recordings. nothing that is trying to compete with me for attention, just something i can flow into and connect with by being present and listening.

honestly, i'm relieved to have my flutes and singing bowls. in the sixth grade, i knew nothing about music alternatives and ended up listening to elevator music for nearly six months. nobody i knew listened to the stuff so it was secure, no one could find me there, i could hide in it, nobody would try to take it from me. and, in it's way, in an absence of the music i'd find much later, it had a very particular sort of appeal. 101 string renditions of the main theme from "terms of endearment" still make me a bit misty eyed. but mostly, it was about having an island on the radio dial i believed no one else in my peer group would dare visit. i could be alone with my music. eventually, i go back, i need to; the summer filled a half dozen walgreen's cassettes with los lobos and madonna off top 40 radio. i think my father nearly cried in relief.

so there you have it: to an extent, my musical fasting is escapism. disassociating myself. i know this. i understand. on some level i feel rejecting popular music--or maybe, more, the energy and politics of popular music--will protect me from society. or heal me from society. or allow me to fall through the looking glass at last, into a universe where effort equals return: you know, you do a job, you get paid for it; you create something meaningful, it provides you with solace; you move across the country to take the next step in your relationship, and, well, you get my drift.

however, i think if everyone could or would take a day or maybe three to exclusively listen to flutes and breath or crickets and brooks, really, really listen, the world would be a better place.
[cats tarot] lovecats

ben, on love

"i don't know what is going on in your head most of the time, but i am extremely drawn to it... actually, i think that defines our relationship quite well."