I'm sitting here and large grey rain clouds are muscling in on the mountain view outside my window. I'm writing to my new professor for the poetry class i am taking in the summer and itunes is on shuffle. Bonnie Tyler was just singing to me and everyone out there about needing a hero, i wasn't really listening to her too seriously (sorry Bonnie, I do respect you but in this moment your voice did not pull me from the task at hand).
Georgia starts in, the guitar sounds live and I can hear her fingers moving full of life as she noodles from chord to chord—and in this moment i'm right there with her. Amy's bass fills the room—it's so casually present like that epic old friend you have that you only see every once in a while and you can hang out in silence and it's never uncomfortable. For a second I can feel her giving me a nod—a cue to start playing, only right now it's a cue to remember. A cue to remember that feeling of being on stage surrounded by your closest friends, feeling alive, immersed in the moment, when you are all moving together, bodies moving in different ways but in time—sometimes out of time—sometimes out of tune—but always together at the same time.
Our thoughts can drift off, our thoughts can drift off out of our bodies, project out into the room through our moving hands, meeting other thoughts circulating in the room—adding to the sounds that fill the room. Right now their sound is filling my room, the sound of their sound filling the echoing room of the Northcote Social Club, recorded in July 2013, I imagine the clouds blocking my mountain view were similar to the ones outside those walls at the time. I imagine them seeking refuge in the heated beer garden after the show drinking pots, smoking ciggies and the laughing and banter that flows.
Harriet’s vocals kick in, I don't know if she feels the words she's singing about anymore but she's feeling something and I can feel it too, I feel them so much they send a tingle down my spine—I know this may sound like a fucking cliche but it's true and I'm not afraid to say it. I was just reading Eileen Myles interviewing Ntozake Shange about her poems, Eileen says her poems create a dialogue about being in the world and Ntozake replies "when we listen to music we don't sit around thinking about how to play a saxaphone. I would rather you not think about how the poem's constructed but simply be in it with me." After reading this quote I underlined it in blue pencil and wrote believe in something for a moment—the beginnings of something to write about, but the school of radiant living completed this thought for me by playing in Melbourne on a cold July night and recording it. Listening to music is like reading a poem.