In each of my blogs I’d like to take a few minutes to talk about a song I have written or that I’m currently working on.
This week I’d like to talk about ‘You Are Alive’ from my EP ‘Allow Joy’. More than any other track on the EP I believe this song will benefit the most from being available on a recording. For me this song is all about the lyrics and often the listener needs a few listens to allow the lyrics sink in.
I suffer from terrible insomnia. Since my health problems began, about five and a half years ago, I have experienced many long dark nights alone with only pain to keep my company. As the years passed I found my mind playing more and more ‘tricks’ on me during these long nights. Eventually I started to become fixated on death. The more I tried not to think about it the more I thought about it. Then one night a thought hit me. I’m alive. That’s what matters right now, I’m alive and I need to worry about what I’m going to do with my life, to make it a good one, rather than fixate endlessly about Heaven and the afterlife or the possibility of oblivion. That’s what the song is about. Living life before I die. I truly believe that many of us live like we’re never going to die and so end up never focusing on what’s important, and as a result we never really live at all. On the other hand a healthy appreciation of our mortality, always remembering that we will one day die, helps us to truly live. A little like how I would never have got an essay written at Uni had I not had deadlines! The fact that one-day this life will end (regardless of what comes next) makes our time here precious and important! What more motivation do we need to make our lives count, than that one-day they will be over?
Ps, as I was writing this I received an email telling me that my song ‘You Are Alive’ has been broadcast on BBC radio Suffolk Introducing! And they called it ‘ a wonderful way to end the show’!
You can listen to the show here until Saturday 6th September 2014. My song is right at then end.
This coming week is a busy one!
I always try to make it to the excellent Open Mic run by Sophie Welham at The Grinning Rat in Ipswich on Tuesday,
Then I’m playing ‘Live Lounge’ at Costa Coffee in Stowmarket on Wednesday (3rd Sept 2014) I’m very much looking forward to it and I’m hoping that this will be a great night, it’s not often I get to play an extended set (I’ll be playing for about an hour in total, with a break, so I’ll be able to air some older tunes as well as try out a couple of brand new ones) and I’ll be joined for some songs by Carl, Fern and Sam of Elephant In The Room. I think it’s only fair to give you all a ‘heads up’ that it’s a Christian event so be warned, God will get a mention or two :-)
Then I’m hoping to make it down to The Steamboat in Ipswich, health permitting, on Thursday night for Suffolk Songwriters.
If that all weren’t enough I’m live on Radio West Suffolk on Sunday (7th) from about 6:30pm, I’ll be playing some songs and speaking about my music.
This week I’d like to mention James Morgan and Holly Johnston two truly amazing local artists who are sadly moving on to pastures new, moving up to Ayr in Scotland. A big double loss for the Suffolk Music scene and a massive gain for Ayr!
I’m honoured to be able to call them both friends now, but before I knew how awesome they are as people I was blown away by their music.
I bought James’ album ‘Bohemia Awaits’ at an open mic last year. As fantastic as his solo performances are, I was still unprepared for how amazing his album sounds! As I understand it, the album was recorded by James and his friend Lewis Andrews in James’ bedroom, However I would have no idea that this was the case just by listening to it. It sounds outstanding, with truly top-notch production and well-crafted, moving songs. I was fortunate to have had a relatively long ‘better patch’ of health last summer and Bohemia Awaits became the soundtrack to many short but sweet walks in the beautiful Suffolk Countryside. I have a packed iPod and yet I was drawn back to James’ outstanding work again and again. (I later found out that some of the paths I had been walking on were only a stones throw away from James’ house!)
The first thing I noticed about Holly’s wonderful performances was her stunning voice, folky and soothing with a rich tone and distinctive character. However as I witnessed more of her performances and listened to her album ‘East Anglian Boy’ I became more and more enamoured with her song writing skills as well. Holly is both an excellent storyteller and a sensitive translator of emotion. Her songs are able to grab the listener and help them to feel, as well as witness, stories and feelings.
They will both be very missed!
Author: Keith Sadler
I want to share my music-making journey with you, as well as my experience of the amazing local music scene here in Suffolk.