I’ve got to get to it. The type of “serious” where sleepless nights and early mornings, where weekends fade and chores are undone because I haven’t left the studio. Not a matter of getting “more proficient” or skilled at color rendering, but a matter of keeping at it, giving the ‘craft’ the time it is due.
Work at it, seriously, as if it is the passionate part of my life…talking to myself as I write; telling ‘me’ to get serious about art and at the same time, more relaxed. I’ve been a ‘worry-wart’ all my life. All my life, always considering the “what-ifs” that would stop me in my tracks…and yet, at the same time, I’ve trudged along…I’ve been at the bottom ‘many times.’ And in spite of putting down brush and pencil for well over 20 years, I’m back at it. If I wake tomorrow, I will be at it again…but I want to push me to spend more time with this process.
Kicking old habits while grasping for new ones…endless cycle of shedding dead flesh to reveal the fresh new me beneath. But sorrow exists below the surface as well. Buried like a “long lost treasure,” or a totem with warnings and caution flags along the way. But we’ve got to keep going.
Like a person of a different ‘hue’ venturing into an ‘unfamiliar’ part of town to hear that “Blues music,” and hang out with the people, this ‘way’ is frought with dangers. You think you want to hear the blues? You think you want to experience the depths of despair? You think you want to feel the power of sorrow, soaked in brown liquor and brown bodies swaying to death cries? You may not be the same again…
“We” tried to drain the strain from ‘blues,’ make it something you could play at summer jams, open air concerts, where it is safe for children to run and play, while mommy and daddy set up picnics. I’m not going to say “That’s not the blues,” it very well could be. But “blues” is the type of music, truly found in brown liquor, at the bottom of a bottle with a couple of drops left. Blues are found in the midnight, when the side of the bed is no longer warm, where a body once lay. Blues appear in morning light, when that old job the beats the life out of you, dragging you to a home or two bedroom apartment you can’t afford, with just enough sensibility to repeat the cycle again tomorrow. And it certainly wants you in someone’s club on Saturday night to wash away (COVER UP) sorrow that lives in your marrow.
Yeah, we have “legitimized” the “Blues,” we’ve made “Jazz” less about the squishing of hips and thighs and more about the wail of a saxophone, but them bones beneath the surface? They keep rattling!