I sometimes wonder whether everyone has around me is just basically happy. They seem to be, though all no doubt have there own day to day problems. But I presume – given that poets and singers are less plentiful than the average citizen – that they have a little more sadness that the ‘average’ person. I only say this as music garners in me – and in many I suspect – the emotions sometimes hidden from every day view.
That of course leads straight to the question, what is happiness? I wonder whether happiness could be likened to clouds, in fact let’s attach all our emotions to this idea. Emotions – happiness and sadness uncle tom cobbly and all – are much like clouds. Sometimes they skud by, at other times, they shine and dazzle, while on some days, they are grey and hang heavy. And on occasions one may have a blue sky day. For myself it would seem, there are always a few clouds. As Roy Harper sang in a song so many years ago. “Black clouds are hanging, in a patch blue sky …” For me this is true. There is always – if not a black cloud – then a greyish cloud hanging in my blue sky.
Don’t get me wrong, I am moving along fine. Making sense of something that will never make sense, I.E the world. I know fully that there will always feel like something is missing, but that is because I know what it is. I am a fish out of water on this plain, and so as such, just have to do my time, before I can get home. Of course many folks out there would say, uh oh, he’s gone mental, or spiritual or whatever. Which is true looking from a normal point of view, but if you have the experience of oneness, you know this is not real. It really is just something one is passing through. Transient in all it forms. The great play of consciousness.
Music is the strangest of things. How one note, is much like a drone, yet two start to take you somewhere, while three … well, you are already lost. I have wondered sometimes what came first in me, the music or the inherent sadness. I just have this strange suspicion that if I had only listed to really terrible happy pop music, I would, could, or may have been, a different person.
Surely not! And yet it feels so. When my peers where listening to the radio, and popular music – the music of a 12 year old at the time. I couldn’t tell you who it was, as I didn’t listen – but it’s always been there. I tend to call it crap! But at that same time, I was listening to Roy Harper, Chuck Mangione, Weather Report, Earl Klugh with plenty of Joni Mitchel and John Martyn thrown in.
At around 18 I started faffing with songwriting and composition. I had always played piano, but the guitar was new to me, and I set off on my journey of , ‘trying to do something in music.’ But I digress. The point I was making was, does the music bring out a sadness in me, or does the sadness in me bring out the music. To me and many others besides.
Can you imagine a life without music; the back-drop to life. I mean ninety percent or higher of every movie that has ever been made, can be made or broken by the sound track. A movie without music would be nothing compared to life without music. And yet maybe it would have been a happier world, if the only sound track to life was that of the Sound of Music. What a different world it might have been. Thank fuck that never happened, and yet at the same time, you just don’t know, it could have been better!
PS my first album at the age of 11 was the Dam Busters movie theme music … who knew !*?