What the hell do I know about giving birth eh? I don’t even have any babies to show for it. Well if you do not like metaphors, stop reading now because the entire premise of this blog post is based on one.
And at the same time it’s not a metaphor at all. Giving birth in an actual sense is the ultimate creative act. There’s you, and then there’s all this other stuff that’s involved – genetics, DNA, environment, karma, and all of that belonging to the other person too.
Similarly when I make a song it’s coming through me but it’s not completely made of me. I’m a conduit (I like this word.) And when I make a whole album of songs, that’s a bit like conceiving and giving birth to duedecuplets. (I had to look this up, and there is not an official word because 10 is the greatest number of babies on record.)
Imagine then, if the passage from conception to birth were impeded by financial constraints, band breakups, vocal complaints, general confusion, tangential creations of other albums, tours, and the like. Imagine if your twelve babies got stuck in your womb while you waddled around pregnantly creating a whole bunch of other stuff. Would that be comfortable? I don’t think so.
What if, waiting in line behind these overdue babies was a whole other set of twelve in various stages of development. What if they started to overtake the older ones. Would there be a struggle? Who would win?
Apparently some of the pain of childbirth derives from the difficulty of the mother’s body in letting go. It’s hard to let go of your creation because how do you know when it’s ready? In the case of childbirth, nature wades in and makes that choice on the whole. In the case of an album you’re on your own. You could keep on tweaking ad infinitum. Is it ever going to be the shining masterpiece you hoped it would be?
I’m going to let go of album number 2 now. It has been an epic journey and I am grateful to those faithful people who have helped by contributing their time, energy and creativity. I can wholeheartedly say that I’m proud of it and I did my best at every step of the way.
There are even some bits that I like.
Open Heart Circus will be on sale Thursday 27th November. Come to the FREE launch gig at The Bedford Pub in Balham the same day at 8pm. Limited Edition CDs will be available.