Happy New Year one and all. I hope 2015 is good to us.
I fell off the blog wagon entirely towards the end of last year; busy with stuff etc. It’s probably folly to think that a post on the first day of the new year will result in a successful ‘Start As You Mean To Go On’ regularity, but I thought it worth a punt. So I’ll be sharing some thoughts on the recent goings on in my music world.
I did a little gig just before Christmas.
I was invited by the great Jan Carson, writer and Arts Development Officer at The Ulster Hall, to come and do some tunes on a Christmas theme. Some covers and a few of my own was the plan, and ultimately how it worked out.
I was joined by 13-year-old Caoimhe, for two of four songs. Caoimhe comes to me for singing. It was great to sing with her in public and have that as a thing to work towards in our lessons. (she needn’t have felt nervous; she was mega on the day).
I too, was nervous. Literary Lunchtimes have become part of the weekly daytime arts calendar in Belfast.
This last year has been a busy one for my family, what with the arrival of our beautiful daughter, and my husband finally going full time with his photography.
(He’s gifted – See ye here – http://www.jonathanryderphotography.com)
All told, I hadn’t written much or performed at all in a very long time. I’m not so practiced at performing by myself, more used to working with choirs/other musicians.
I am also a painfully slow song writer, something I need to work on, or just get over myself! People seem to think that if you create something you are inherently ‘creative’ and you’re often described as such. That would seem to make sense, but I don’t feel it in my case. I need to work and think and wonder and edit and drag ideas out of myself and the world for the songs that I write. Then I scrap everything and start again, with the result that I have a low rate of production! The people that I would regard as truly ‘creative’ are those that have ideas and ideas and ideas. Schemes just come to them and from them. They seem to have a sixth sense for the right kind of artistic innovation at the right time. They may not ‘create’ the piece, but they create the conditions for it to be made.
In any case, I had decided that if this performance went awry I would shelve writing/performing my own music. We have a family to support and the kind of time commitment involved in music making is more than I can justify right now, isn’t it? Except it doesn’t quite work like that.
I need to practice, to collaborate and always to learn. I may/may not be ‘creative’. I am certainly slow and not at all prolific. But for all that, I am a song-writer.
And I’ll do it whenever I can.
In the end I enjoyed the gig, and people were very kind about my music. I’ll actually get some stuff recorded this year.