Departure

A few thoughts before I set off on my journey. Before most voyages there are a few questions. Am I running from or am I going to? Am I ready for what lies ahead? What is the  protocol if you lose your passport in Wuxi, China?!

A year ago I felt incredibly uncertain over my future. Getting signed by EMI had felt like an “arrival” for me. It felt like I had fulfilled something that I had set out long ago to achieve. I felt I had arrived home. 

If anything losing the deal has highlighted for me how important it is not to hang on to things. I seem to search for certainties because I am not yet developed enough to give into the permanent changeability of things. 

When you´ve been in the wilderness for so long as an independent musician, getting signed by a major feels like a vindication and a validation.

Thankfully life has taught me not to hang on to illusions, to certainties, to fixed things. I feel incredibly grateful for that. There is a lot that I don´t know, and much I´m yet to learn. But I am thankful for all the ways life has humbled me.

At some point during the last year, I realized that I was in the richest moment of my life as a songwriter. Songs seem to arrive in abundance when things are shaky, and my uncertainty about my musical future was not answered by a new “real life” certainty like a record deal. It has been arrived at through song - and by that the adventure of the spirit.

I have no idea why, but the songs have kept coming, and in a way that has reignited me. All I really knew was that I had to somehow try to live up to them. And that is what I am now trying to do. 

The idea of “Journeys” is not about travel for me, and not dependent on whatever place I happen to be. In some ways it is more about the arrival at the realization that the human spirit is always in motion, is always potential, is not something static. 

It is about the journey of the songs from birth to their audience, and about the journey the spirit makes as it accompanies them. 

For now I am taking a deep breath on my last morning at home. There is a cup of tea and an Autumnal crispness in the air. It feels a fitting wind as I prepare to depart.

"To accept the challenge of the unknown, in spite of all fears, is courage"

— Osho - Courage: The Joy of Living Dangerously

Introducing “Journeys”

New project, new tour, new beginning.

New project, new tour, new beginning.

Moscow

Photos of last nights gig by Lorde at Columbia Halle

Funny Species

There´s an unwillingness in us to allow a space where poetry can fill. 

Perhaps the only thing which can save humanity is insight. It doesn´t often come high up on agendas.

Recently I have taken to being. And it is something new. The world slows down to a shuffle, and my skin has become warmer around my bones.

I am parking myself where nothing happens. And from there am watching the world dance its fidgety dance.

It´s makes you realize how silly the great illusions. It´s one of history´s paradoxes that ultimately, all the great dictators just look ridiculous.

“Hmm, this morning I´m going to wake up and execute half my population”

After you swallow the terribleness, the pity, the cries, the sadness, the ineffable longing of things which cannot return - you are just left with the comedy. 

Shakespeare knew a thing or two about the idiots of the world. But then again apparently he never got to grips with his own name. I guess that´s what made him a great poet, knowing that the most irrelevant thing in the world is spelling your name right. 

Our mania´s are just dances around the void. Terror at confronting loss. Or even worse, of there being nothing at all at the centre. 

What all the Buddhists spent so long trying to find is the very thing most of us seek to avoid. We are a funny species. 

But all I know is that beyond the anxiety, loss, killing maiming, breaking, beating, hurting, revenging, obsessing, fighting…beyond even the nothing, there is a spring. And it is not destroyable. It is too joyous, and to attempt to break it is like shooting at smoke. 

“The treasure at the end of the rainbow” was a just a phrase written by someone who had lost the courage to get there. 

“The fool´s gold” was written by the alchemist who wasn´t any good.

For me, I used to talk about “what I believe in”. As I grow older I give up my beliefs and they are slowly replaced by a sense of truth. 

I know it takes a life time, and finally I´m reconciled with that. Joyously.

AMERICAN PORTRAITS

Moscow sound check

Moscow sound check

THE LAUGHING HEART

your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
know them.
take them.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
in you. 

Charles Bukowski

"One may not reach the dawn save by the path of night"
Kahlil Gibran

"One may not reach the dawn save by the path of night"

Kahlil Gibran

"Somebody asked me: "What do you do? How do you write, create?" 
"You don’t, I told them. You don’t try. That’s very important: not to try, either for Cadillacs, creation or immortality. You wait, and if nothing happens, you wait some more. It’s like a bug high on the wall. You wait for it to come to you. When it gets close enough you reach out, slap out and kill it. Or if you like its looks you make a pet out of it.”
Charles Bukowski

"Somebody asked me: "What do you do? How do you write, create?"

"You don’t, I told them. You don’t try. That’s very important: not to try, either for Cadillacs, creation or immortality. You wait, and if nothing happens, you wait some more. It’s like a bug high on the wall. You wait for it to come to you. When it gets close enough you reach out, slap out and kill it. Or if you like its looks you make a pet out of it.”

Charles Bukowski

I´ve been staying in The Haight in San Francisco which is pregnant with musical history, and a fitting place to begin my journey. The city is visually stunning with its famous land marks and its been a special experience as a songwriter to drift through the city and take it in. Even more so has been the kindness of some of the people I´ve been lucky enough to meet, whether some buskers working through some new songs in Dolores Park, or old hippie Jeff (pictured with the pipe) who was so kind to take me take me to the farmers market in his station wagon which runs off vegetable oil. I´ve spoken with a gentlemanly Yahoo executive while eating a Burrito and had my heart turned as an old hunch-backed lady checked for recyclables on a street in Silicon valley. I know that my new album will be effected by these different colors of humanity, and I´m grateful to be in a new place long enough to see how these experiences emboss themselves in the form of song.