Plain in the city

A plain Quaker folk singer with a Juris Doctorate in his back pocket, salt in his blood, and a set of currach oars in the closet, Ulleann Pipes under his arm, guitar on his back, Anglo Irish baggage, wandering through New York City ... in constant amaze. Statement of Faithfulness. As a member of the Quaker Bloggers Ad Hoc Committee I affirm that I will be faithful to the Book of Discipline of my Meeting 15th Street Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Predicable luck...

Well, things are going as well as usual. I got a call that there is going to be an agent at a venue at which I play, and they would like me to play tonight... well... a rather primary member of the band has been absent for a week and not returning phone calls... so far, this looks like all the times opportunity came knocking of late... I've been home but can't get the door open.. Ce le vie, Sin e doigh, ah well... would have been nice. I was going to post about a wonderful concert I saw last night... I'll save it until ... oh I don't know... think I will go see a film.


At 8:29 PM, Blogger Dyske said...

Ironically, for most of us, positive things do not inspire action. We write much more if we feel miserable. People who are happy in general don’t usually become so deeply religious. It’s the feeling of discontent that drives one to become religious. So, most religious groups are full of unhappy people. Even things that are typically considered positive are done only as reactions to negative things, like homeless shelters, animal rights, anti-war demo, etc.. Songs we write about are in response to negative things. So, we have recourse to the very thing we criticize. Without the negative things in life, we would be doing nothing. Without them, we wouldn’t even know how to be positive.

Much of this is due to our inability to see and appreciate truly positive things, which is in fact neither positive nor negative; positivity that is not inspired by negativity. Art that comes out of true positivity appears boring to most people. It lacks sex-appeal, spice, or emotional/moral engagement, and without these qualities, we don’t know how to relate to it. This is why the music of John Cage is very difficult to listen to. For most people, it has nothing to hold on to.

Beyond swing back and forth between positive and negative, happy and unhappy, we don’t know how to live. Beauty beyond good and evil is right in front of us, but we can’t see it.

At 4:10 AM, Blogger Lorcan said...

This is true... most of my histories are not happy songs. When you think about it, my Anna Curtis songs, which were positive and happy were inspired by my positive response to a negative thing, fellow Quakers who were feeling lost and war like after 9/11, so I wrote songs like Richard Murray and Judith Folger, or Thomas Lurting (not an Anna Curtis story) to remind folks of those things that made me feel positive in the face of negative things.

I wrote some very happy positive songs a little while ago, when I was happy, or thought I was... and a Friend told me they made her skin crawl. So, I guess, as an artist, one has to just embrace the darknesses of the world and hope to say something ... valuable.

What is valuable though? I hope all my songs make people think. That way I don't have to...

Don't take that last sentence to heart, I am not serious about me not thinking... I am feeling good these days, working on this CD with nothing but mild ... oh, I don't know, frustration? that it is turning into a solo album again.



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