'House, Work & Home' 2003
So yesterday it became official, I am now part of the blogging community. Were it not for a sweet text from my very dear friend Missy, enthusiastically asking when the blog would be able to be viewed I probably would have procrastinated further but it feels good to finally have the 'launch' (humour me!)under way.
Unfortunately, Elliott was a little under the weather yesterday and called for lots of cuddles and pretty much my full, undivided physical and emotional attention and so I wasn't able to put much 'POW' into my 'blog launch'! It felt like balloons needed to be released at random or at least a champagne bottle popped or something. I felt like glamming up, taking a glass of wine in hand and spouting nonsense about 'audience' and 'contextualization' like the good old days of attending private views at art galleries.
However, the day hadn't quite panned out and so I ended up celebrating the accomplishment of a small dream(my blog)alone watching an Iron Maiden documentary on iplayer whilst snacking on the kids monster munch crisps, recollecting the nights I spent at Edwards when I was a rock chick! It was a thoroughly good evening!
The evening spent nostalgically reminiscing about my youth also got me thinking about whether the dreams and ambitions I had back then have really changed that significantly. It's fascinating that often it takes us such a long time only to come full circle and back to the same interests and values and purposes as we had back in the early days when we were determining who we wanted to be.
When I was 14 years old I went out with a local boy from my neighbourhood. His name was Paul and he was really into the rock scene and infact it was Paul who first introduced me to Iron Maiden! He was three years older than me which at the time was quite a big deal and to be honest it was probably that age gap that meant the relationship didn't last very long. We stayed in touch during my teenage years(it might be more fair to say that I 'pursued' him I'm afraid!)and one day out of the blue he announced that he had joined a band as the lead vocalist. I was in shock, he couldn't sing! Several gigs later watching him and his band play, I was hooked and said to him 'if you can sing in a band, I can do that too but better' . I remember saying it very flirtatiously and thinking I was being cute when I'm sure it was just annoying but none the less this was the start of my interest in making music and not long after that aged 17 I joined my first band, a rock outfit called 'The Peaches'. I am extremely grateful to Paul for the two significant things that came out of that early relationship:
* an introduction to Iron Maiden and rock music
* an introduction to making music/singing
Music and singing are not things that off the top of my head I would say I am involved with even though I have done a fair bit over the years. For this very reason I made a point of mentioning it in my blog profile, so as not to be able to run away from it. For me, I think singing can leave me feeling emotionally raw, exposed and in much more of a way than the words in this blog ever could. When I listen to lyrics that I have written, vocals I have sung, it takes me back to the place I was when I wrote and sang them and it's not always a place that I want to go back to. For that reason, for a long time I haven't been able to listen to an album that hubby and I wrote and released back in 2001 when we were in 'Papa November' together. I've been having a quick listen here and there over the last couple of days and I have really been enjoying the memory of that time ... it's strange to hear how young my voice sounds and how it has changed, I'm pretty sure I can't sing that high comfortably anymore. It was also a great reminder of how much I like to sing, I had totally forgotten.
'Shed my current skin' is a lyric I wrote many years ago that I often come back to, one that has had a re-occuring presence in my work. I've been thinking about it again recently because I feel that is what I'm building up to, that I'm shedding my skin ... with a new skin beneath just waiting to reveal itself fully.
Both of the images featured are taken from an exhibition of drawings titled 'House, Work & Home' that I showed in Nottingham during July 2003 at Emaca(East Midlands African-Caribbean Arts).