How many times do I have to write about music? About how important it is to me? About how it inspires and drives my creative side?
How many times?
At least once more, it seems.
So, if you haven’t guessed by now, I decided to take a break from the blog.
A long break.
I haven’t written since Thanksgiving, and — quite honestly — I wasn’t sure when I stopped if I was going to take up again my keyboard and the commitment to share my thoughts and myself three times a week. I was burning out, I was tired, and I wasn’t sure I gave much of a damn anymore. Oh, the words were still there, but they were harder to find. The urge to share was still there, but the energy…the energy was not.
And the worst part was that I didn’t know why. I couldn’t put it together.
“What changed? Why is it so hard now?”
What changed, indeed.
I had stopped listening to music.
Oh, it wasn’t anything conscious or driven or intentional. No, it was the stupidest of things: I got into a few podcasts, and they took up all of my “listening time”.
Now, look, I’ve talked many times before — many, many times — about music, and about how it matters to me. Well, none of that was exaggeration. Take away the music, and I find it hard…no, strike that. I find it all-but impossible to really write.*
*The shitty pseudo-temp job didn’t help, either, by the way.
Tonight I was sitting there, starting to cook, and I decided to fire up some music. I had no stinking idea what I wanted to listen to, so I went with a favorite artist…an artist who has inspired a number of writing sessions and flash fiction pieces in the past.
Umm, not to repeat myself or anything, but…well, shit.
It wasn’t a chorus of angels — that is reserved for when I have my first coffee after a long time without — but it was stinking close. Almost as soon as the music started, the urge came back. The words came back, and the energy came back. I had to take that bit of advice that I’ve given to others so many times: when a thought/idea comes, you don’t wait, you don’t try to “capture” it, you write it.
So I did. Write it, I mean.
The particular song? Well, I’ve talked before about my current favorite band (Gaslight Anthem). The creative force behind that band has a solo career as well, and he is far and away one of my favorite songwriters.* As for the song that…err…well…got me going (again)…well, it speaks to me. It’s a symbolic song, a song with a lot to say. It is, in the end, a song that speaks to me about a number of things, but especially it speaks to me about me (and, no, you don’t get any more explanation than that):
*The artist’s name is Brian Fallon, by the way. He wrote, for vastly different songs on vastly different albums, two of my all-time favorite lines:
“I get up in the morning / Like a ghost chained to a haunting” from Proof of Life
“With everything discovered just waiting to be known / What’s left for God to teach from his throne / And who will forgive us when he’s gone?” from National Anthem
Oh, I burned my dinner, by the way…