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just lock me in a cell with a synthesizer
singapore sunset
amw
Something that has been gnawing at me recently is why i stopped writing music. Or more, why i haven't started again.

I had been playing guitar for a few years by the time i got my first sequencing software in 1993. I remember the first thing i programmed was a synthy version of Stairway To Heaven. Over the next year i fell steadily more in love with electronic music - starting with a "classic synthesizer hits" compilation, then leading on to computer game music and finally the techno that was top of the charts in Europe. I started writing my own tracks in 1994 and released my first few on the internet in 1995. Over the next few years it was the most important thing in my life - i released over 100 tracks online and, after a few false starts, finally came out with a self-pressed album at the end of 1998. The local DJs liked it and a local label solicited new material for a second album. And then... and then i don't know what happened.

Actually a lot happened. I became extremely disillusioned with the rave scene and all the messed up shit that goes down behind the curtain. I got desperately paranoid that my roommate and biggest fan was also an obsessive stalker. I fell in love so deeply i don't think my words will ever do it justice. Oh, and i decided to change my sex. So i got my first "real job", barreled headlong into the gay scene and cut off everything from my old life (ahem). And somehow i managed to break my own heart in a million pieces as i broke someone else's, which seems to be some kind of fucked up speciality of mine. Somewhere in all that i lost my muse.

I did try to write music afterwards. I spent 10 years buying and selling synthesizers and guitars and other equipment, looking for inspiration. I tried new software and i tried old software, but nothing brought the magic back. Even today i can sit down with my keyboard and jam for hours, but i have a block when it comes to recording - actually composing a piece. There are still riffs in me, but they never go anywhere. I don't know what i'm scared of. I don't know why it's so hard. As i type this there are tears streaming down my face i'm so frustrated. Trends i would have loved to ride have come and gone, i've watched friends and peers succeed doing what they love, i've seen the industry turned completely on its head and all the while i'm on the sidelines.

What really stings is it's not my general creativity that's lost - i can write till the fucking stars burn out, i can dance and sing and draw and express myself in a million different ways... But the one thing, the one thing i love most continues to elude me. I'm terrified i've just lost it, that i don't have anything new, anything good left in me. God, just thinking that i feel like throwing myself off a bridge in despair. Ugh, and now i'm sounding like i'm 19 too. I just don't know what to do. Every time i hear some kick ass new artist or nifty tune i haven't heard before it kills me because they are doing it, they're just doing it and i'm not. I pinned this Duke Ellington quote up on my board the other day - "i merely took the energy it takes to pout and wrote some blues". Why can't i do that? God knows i have enough fucking shit saved up to write a dozen albums.

I feel like i just need to be away on my beach somewhere, no one around, no partner, no internet, no bullshit, just some palm trees and me. But i've just had a year free to do anything i wanted... A year and nothing. A palm tree isn't going to make all the difference right now, it has to start in me.

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Bigs hugs to you darlin. Sometimes when you want something like that so bad - that the weight of how bad you want it actually stops the flow of it naturally happening - which is what needs to happen if you know what I mean.

If you can, take the pressure off of yourself and just glide :)

Thanks, you're right that i should give myself the time for it to happen naturally. I should probably also acknowledge that starting drum classes is a real first step on my journey back to making music. I guess i'm just conscious of the fact that if i don't keep taking steps i'll never get anywhere. Right now i think i'm blocked on that next step, whatever it is...

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