And the Beat Goes on

by  Christian A. Brown  |  July 23, 2017  |     2 Comments

I’ve been in a bit of a creative lull. I’ve been twiddling my thumbs without my manuscript since the middle of June. My publicity campaign has been getting ramped up over the last month, so there hasn’t been much on that front either. At least Jupiter–his woes and then exuberance–have been keeping me busy. But Creative people without their chosen devotion can slide very easily into wallowing, even depression. I haven’t gone that far, and one of the diversions that keeps me out of that pit has been–and will always be–music.

I come from an artistic and somewhat musical family. Many of my relatives on my father’s side have dabbled in the arts. My grandma was a part-time painter; she displayed at local art shows while maintaining a real estate career. In a perfect world, she would have sustained her income off the former. My father played jazz guitar, again, not to a degree of success that he could support himself. My aunt wrote an unpublished manuscript. There are about a dozen further examples on both sides of my family tree into which I could digress. A lot of half-starts, though making a career from art isn’t a choice for which life rewards you. I guess that’s part of why it’s important for me to succeed in my career. I want to be the one who didn’t dabble, but became.

Music, though….Music keeps me going. I need silence when I’m writing. However, for those moments between, those beats of life when I’m exercising, chilling out, or just trying to occupy my mind from its nervous disposition (like recently), music is the pulse that keeps me calm. For me, a bad mood can be reversed simply by hearing the right song. Real Love has been a great pick-me-up. Nothing like wistful young romance to make the mind sing and heart soar. Allie X, a fellow Canadian and young star quickly rising to fame, offers a more melancholy/ hipster rendition of the same timeless circumstance.

When I need to push through a heavy rep, or throw myself into the down-and-dirty of labour, The Apple helps to hammer out the necessary force. That’s a powerful song that’s sung by an explosive artist–V V Brown’s whole catalog is great. And if I’m in the mood for pure camp, Ru Paul has been churning out dance hits that somehow stay fresh despite the fluctuating trends in music and queerness.

Thanks to Spotify’s algorithms (which are much better at isolating taste than Apple’s software, I find), I’ve been introduced to a slew of creatives and inspiring voices that would have been otherwise lost to me. As strange as it sounds, I connect to music on a spiritual level: songs move me to heights of emotion that I usually don’t (allow myself to?) feel. I can’t imagine a day without a song, a beat, a poem spun to music. It’s what gets me up, what reminds me that I live and feel and that my little scribbles to contribute to the mural of human creativity.

What’s on your playlist this weekend?

All my love,

–C

P.S. Today’s featured image is the darkly innocent changeling girl, Macha. 

The Seal without her skin

2 Comments

  1. Julie Frayn on July 24, 2017 at 2:17 pm

    Music is the stuff of life. I go anywhere from AC/DC and Metallica to ABBA and Neil Diamond, with a lot of ’60s Motown for good measure. And Disco. I love Disco (being that I spent my formative years in the late ’70s and early ’80s. Assuming ‘formative’ means teens…).

    I also have an artistic family. My systir of course, with her photography and computer and her own writing. My grandfather and grandmother were accomplished painters (and etchers and jewellery makers etc.). Grandpa was also an organist and taught art in Britain a million years ago. I have dabbled in drawing (was damn good too) and pointillism, then it was sewing, then children’s poetry because I had children, and now fiction of varying lengths. Wonderful how that side of a person morphs and changes with time and age and circumstance.

    • Christian A. Brown on August 2, 2017 at 9:56 pm

      Wow! What a tapestry. Now I know why your writing is so rich and layered.

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