I left California after the holidays this January and visited a talented drummer friend of mine in Brooklyn. He invited me to join him for some West African drumming. It’s a kind of drumming you can only be taught by listening and experiencing with people that have learned the same dialect. We sat down in this loft that overlooked Manhattan and forgot about everything else that wasn’t rhythmic. After centering my mind on playing hand drums for 3 hours straight, my thoughts wondered to what I’ve been missing out on. This time being an awakening thing. Like starring at the back of a cereal box until you’re eyes finally adjust to the real image.
Drums have been my thing for awhile, but I hadn’t really done anything quite like that. Something you can’t emulate on the street corner with a cajun. I’ve been fighting years of feeling stale in a life rhythm and pattern you could say. I’ve heard many times (so many times that it’s like the annoyance of a #1 hit single, that if you hear it one more time you’re going to loose it) that insanity (ironically) has been defined by doing the same thing over and over and expecting new results.. I guess this short lived drum moment broke the seal and poured some water onto my cracking, dry desert..
When this happens, you ok yourself to explore again.. and you start looking through the telescope from the other end (Theodore Geisel) then find yourself being that kid in the back yard lighting fireworks again, so to speak.
I’ve had an amazing winter and spring. Getting back in touch with some roots in rock and soul music, two of my first music loves. It’s been like cutting all the carbs and sugars out of my musical diet, until I’m able to introduce better, healthier, more palatable foods again. I had another great moment recording a session that was live in the studio. (You know, like they use to do before protools) No click track, no editing, just a full band getting the best take. Again…Refreshing.
Recently I was invited to play with a great band called Golden Youth. New friends of mine. We got out of our distracting and usual patterns of Nashville living and took the songs to a Cabin in the smokey mountains of Tennessee. Cleared the living room of the bear lamp and the dining room table, set up gear and recorded the first part to a 3-parter album. Waking up each morning to a pour over cup of coffee while looking out into the woods wasn’t a bad way to get the day started. Thus far one of my most exciting endeavors..
I usually don’t emote on this blog, but for what it’s worth, to those of you who may be like me and have been stuck in a slump.. wondering what’s next.. unslump yourself. Do any idea that comes to you. It might not be a string of the “biggest” things you’ve ever done. who knows. who cares. But it will lead you to the next best thing.. jump and the net will appear (Julia Cameron).