Time just keeps marching on, doesn’t it? Wheels keep turning.
And that pendulum swings…
I’ve spent most of my life
[since my early teens at least]
in slow oscillation between the twin poles of music and writing. And, of course, distracted by the work I have to do to give me the space and means to do both.
I never really stop doing either of my artistic pursuits, instead it’s a question of main focus
For the past year and half, since the publication of ESCALATION, I’ve been leaning towards the piece of me that happily, joyously in fact, knows himself as musician. There’s been some fun stuff in that period – my record, Sparse, of course, the two Rock Lobster Band-o-matics, getting to know a new circle of musical friends, my lead guitar gig with Anne Castellano & The Smoke, just lots of happy stuff.
A long period of recharge, then. Proven just recently as I began to dip my toe back into story-telling:
- A slow ramp up back into the new novel, RUFUS
- A revisit to all my screenplays to date, tightening, making sure they hit the right notes at the right time
- A new script for a short film, ASYLUM, which I’ll also direct – going out for KickStarter funding soon
It’s all good, I know these cycles – and there’s a very, very pragmatic piece of this that is about my spending time, energy and investment on something which has at least slight chance of return on investment – music, unlike any other art-form, is considered free now, after all. For the sake of my family, I literally cannot afford to spend the amount of time and attention I’ve been spending on music.
Still, even though I know my reasons, I can’t help but feel melancholy knowing that music will head further into the wings, onto the back burner, into a quiet resting place for a little while. It’s a sense of disappointment, I guess. I love to make my music, and am lucky enough to get feedback from people that they like it, but the truth is that in this geographic area, the audience
for the music I make naturally just isn’t there. People that I’ve asked, or who have offered, to help me build audience, haven’t been able to do so. That’s not their fault – it’s just a fact of the music I make solo.
The choice I face is simply this: make, and enjoy, the music I make naturally, or start making music to make other people happy, while it slowly erodes my core energies. While that’s reductionist to the point of an A-B choice, it really is what I face every time I pick up an acoustic guitar.
So, I’m going to give it a rest. I’ve tried to make it work as a performance draw
[i.e. to entice an audience]
but it just hasn’t. I had more luck with a one-off gig, pulling up my studio-recorded backing tracks and playing electric! Great fun, and the door-opening to a return to band format – with the addition of Craig to my live band, Monkey68, I won’t exactly be idle on the music front
[I said back burner, not dead-end!]
So, for those who have been kind enough to listen to my solo acoustic show, you have my profound love and thanks. I’m sure I’ll be playing every so often going forward, I just won’t be focusing on it as a main outlet.
Those wheels keep turning.
And so the pendulum swings…