19 September 2012

An Homage to Indie

Music equals inspiration, no?  It can come in any form, dependent on the listener.  From Mozart to Lead Belly, The Sex Pistols to southern gospel, The Chieftains to The Dead (cringe: Even I had a spell of Deadhead-ism back in the 80's.  Jay still gets stuck there sometimes.).  Whatever the source, it's what gets you going.

Picture your vision going all wavy-like (kind of like if you were at a Dead show) and turn the clocks back a little for a bit of author-imposed digression.  I know--yawn.  Humor me for a sec.  Way back when, during my college years, I had high aspirations of making it big as a visual artist.  I did not know how it was supposed to pan out, whether I would fall into that romantic, starving bohemian stereotype, or the commercial drone working in the graphics world.  I just knew that making stuff was one of the very few things I was really good at and it was what ultimately made me the happiest. 

Well, I learned things don't always work the way our tiny, 20-ish, idealistic minds would prefer.  I had various jobs for various printing houses, but did not get to use my artistic talents very much.  Then marriage happened and shortly thereafter our family was started.  Not that I don't appreciate Jay and the kids, but wow.  Sort of a buzz kill for my inner artist.

OK, enough with the depressing and boring reflection.  Sometimes you've got to set ground work, ya know?  Anyway, currently things are on an upswing with my painting and overall artistic output.  Hey--I even started this blog, which finally puts my degree in English to work for the first time since I graduated over twenty years ago.  Point is, I'm doing and making stuff again.  It may not be to every one's taste, but it feels damned good to put all of the scrambled mess that's in my bizarre mind out there in a creative way.

Back to the music thing.   This newly found and prolific expression coincided with my re-appreciation for music.  There are so many great new sounds to constantly be discovered!  Music has always been a trigger for expression with me, as I know is the case with so many people.  I feel huge amounts of crazy energy/joy when I see the array of  amazing indie artists out there right now.  It's that cutting edge and freedom from the expected that makes so much of the indie music scene full of pure awesomeness.  At the helm of this reawakening of mine is a key artist whom I began listening to, just as I began to unearth all of my art supplies.  That would be Wally de Backer, a.k.a. Gotye.  Ah yes, we all know his "Somebody That I Used to Know," I can see the eyes rolling and hear the groans as I type that song title, due to the massive air time it has received in the last year (I personally still love it and will still belt it out if I'm out of earshot from other people and not near any glass that I can shatter with my voice).  But there is so much more on the rest of his Making Mirrors album as well as his previous work, i.e. Like Drawing Blood and Boardface.  Like this piece entitled "Save Me," from Making Mirrors which just happens to have incredible animation to go along with it, as so much of his work does.

And through listening to his work, I have been introduced to the music of Wally's fellow musician currently on tour with him, Tim Shiel, a.k.a. Faux Pas.   More amazing music--the kind that you can totally get lost in.  Nice.  I'm totally loving this song from his latest album, Remixes: Tim Shiel & Caitlin Park - Baby Teeth Remix .  Excellent work, and if you're inspired to do so, take a gander at his website:  www.iamfauxpas.com .  Great stuff, all of it.   AND accolades to Caitlin Park for having such a kick-ass voice.  Zounds.  Here's her website: http://caitlinpark.net/ .  I think I'm needing to listen to more of her work.

So what's the point of this diatribe that is seemingly endless?  Simply this:  I need to thank these guys.  It is because of their music that I'm back on course with my art.  Pretty neat.  And now for the...erm...odd bit.  I'm directing this precisely to Wally, Tim, et al.  I was lucky to see the show you played here in Boston back in March, and I am even luckier to have tickets to your upcoming show here this Saturday the 22nd (!).   I do not need  to shake your hands personally to show my appreciation (though c'mon, that would be great for just about anybody).  BUT, if at some time during the show, you happen to look out at the crowd, center section in the vicinity of the 11th row, I'll be there, heartily singing along (though terribly off key, much to the dismay of those near me) and grateful that there are such great artists such as you to inspire and delight so many people.  A big thank you for helping me get my art chops back!

Alright.  I don't know if these guys will ever see this, and if they do, hopefully they don't think I'm all weird- stalker-crazy.  But one thing I know is it's always good to put some thanks out into the universe.  It definitely never can hurt.  Rock on, Garth.

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