Today was quite interesting. It was permit day, so there were lots of new buskers out trying to make a buck. That happens at the beginning of every month, then everyone slowly give up and the regulars stay on as usual. The permit system is complete bull shit. A masked man who reads Shakespeare was across from our usual spot. We knew he’d bother us because he had once before. The last time we did what he asked and moved, but this time we weren’t going to. We don’t have a permit, but it is our first amendment right to perform anywhere we god dammed please. After the first song, we had a great big crowd, and just as expected the masked man came over and tried to talk to us. He wouldn’t take off his mask, and it was disturbing, to say the least, to be talking to him with that creepy mask on. The man said he was going to file a complaint. It was insanely clear he was simply envious we had a big audience and no one was paying attention to him. Other guys sketching people across from us have no issue with us at all. Once he left, some of our big fans in the audience asked what that was about. They could tell he was trying to be intimidating. We’ve dealt with it before, and we can handle. No one’s going to stop us from prayforming.
We were both shaken up, angry and disturbed by this random, anonymous man’s rudeness to us at the beginning of prayformance. It fucked us up for the rest of our two hour play. A woman named Ivy, who’d seen us play once before, helped to cheer us up. She stayed and watched and laughed with us. People were both strange and supportive today. I captured a lot of great compliments on our vlog, but a few weirdos came by, too. A young guy who said he was a hari krishna stood near us when we were trying to begin playing. Ivy had to tell him to move out of the way. A weird homeless man walked past our audiences saying something incomprehensible. Weird. Thoth had said it was going to be a weird day, and it was. Even though we had a great day with great audience, neither of us truly enjoyed it. We were distracted. I hope Mask Man doesn’t talk to us again. I hate when people with no talent tell us to stop. It’s rare, but it happens. That’s what makes me wish we were famous.
It’s been a long time since someone has been rude to us. We’ll be ok. Everything will be ok.
I love songs that are sad. Not just sad, but darkly and deeply depressing. I love music that makes me think, and sometimes even makes me cry. Only music makes me cry really these days. Same goes for anything creative. It has to get under my skin for me to truly love it. Our music is like that for me. I cry when I listen to it. Like I said in my video, our music was created from pain. Though it’s made with love when we prayform, there’s a raw emotional undertone in our music. We make music together as two lonely, misunderstood individuals looking for acceptance.
Sometimes I wonder if I should be honest when I’m sad.
In the past, some people have given me a hard time for expressing anything on the dismal/pessimistic/negative spectrum. Sometimes I’ll try to ignore it/not talk about it/act like I’m OK. Other times, like now, I find that complete bluntness about my feelings is best. I think everyone should express when they feel bad. It creates more honesty in the world, and that’s what the world needs more of. This common phrase, “How are you?” “I’m fine.” is bull shit. I’m not fine. No one is ever fine. What a horrible word. Fine. So colorless and dull! Inside, I feel like I’m standing on a precipice and one voice is saying, ” Don’t talk about bad feelings, you’ll only make them worse! You really have no right to feel bad about your life! You are married to a wonderful man and you don’t have to work! Get over it!” While the other voice is saying, “It’s OK to feel however you feel and to be however the hell you are! Depression and sadness and disillusion are part of life! You have to talk about it in order to get over it!” See? It’s tricky.
I like being honest about how I feel. When I’m sad, I accept it, I talk about it and I live with it until I feel better. When I’m happy, I do the same. My family was notorious for sweeping things under the rug. My grandparents were the most infamous in that department. You didn’t talk about bad things. I do. Life is wonderful and life is shit. I have to be real about it.
While I enjoy “happy” music, it’s not the same for me as the deeper stuff. Music that is deep helps me cope with life. “Synchronicity II” by The Police is a good example. Lots of songs by Steely Dan are good examples. One of my favorite songs of theirs called “Charlie Freak” is a perfect example. “When David Heard” by Eric Whitacre always makes me cry.
I need to feel and express myself deeply. Otherwise it isn’t real.
Sunday January 10th 2016
Three days of depression in a row! I finally realized why.
The 2nd act synopsis of our new opera was finished the other day. I started thinking, “Where would we optimally like to be performing these works? Indoors in beautiful acoustic theaters! How can we do that? We need a manager! Or a grant! Then we’ll have someone helping us and money to pay for it!”
However, in my head things starting devolving into this insurmountably difficult shit storm.
“Who would give a grant to or manage two completely unknown street performers with no fan base?! If we did an indoor show without a grant or a manager, how would we pay for everything and get people to come?? We’re better off performing in the park! BUT I WANT TO DO INDOOR SHOWS! And on, and on.
I want this, but I have NO FUCKING CLUE how to make it happen. No. Clue.
The overwhelming feeling of what an unclear and difficult path it is to get for where we are to where I want us to be slumped me into this black, depressive state.
Yes we are talented. Yes we have an original work. Yes we’ve been performing for over 6 years together. Yes we make beautiful music. Yes it’s all original. Yes we’ve done tons of indoor and outdoor shows. Yes we’ve released five albums of original music. Yes we have 25+ years experience combined. Yes we are highly trained professional musicians… BUT we have no promotional materials. No fan base. No manager. No booking agent. No reviews. How can we transition from performing outdoors to performing indoors without those things? We have to have reviews of our show before anyone will review us. We have to have performed incredible successful shows in theaters before people would start coming to see us indoors.
It a Catch 22.
I don’t have the answer. Thoth doesn’t have the answer either. No one does. If someone knew how to promote us properly, we’d have a manager who was doing so. How would we even describe what we do to promoters? Are we doing opera? Theater? Circus? Are we tribal? Gypsy? Classical? Minimalist? There’s nothing like us! We’re a genre-less fusion of many things. How would YOU describe us to someone? I’d say we’re a dancing yin and yang; a fairy alien princess and tribal monk warrior who do original fantasy operas with violin, theatre, singing and dance, but not even that describes us! You can’t describe what we do because no one in the world does it but us!
How can I keep myself from getting into this state of mind when we’re developing new creative works? How can I keep myself from getting scared, frazzled and overwhelmed?
One thing I can do is keep my eyes on what is right in front of me. A big part of why I get depressed is that my mind becomes undisciplined. I’ll get sad about something and then I’ll continue to think about it until I’m this gloomy, unhappy creature. I’ll start wallowing in my own misery. It’s like getting down into a hole and then throwing on the dirt. Why do I do that to myself? Why do I think about things I can’t control? Do I like being sad and depressed? Do I like noticing everything that makes me more and more sad? I have control over how I think. Sometimes things happen that depress me, but I’m sad now and NOTHING IS WRONG. My life just isn’t exactly where I want it to be, but who’s is? Yes, I have my period, but I can control my emotions! When Thoth lost his passport in Edinburgh there was nothing I could do. When we were thrown out of someone’s apartment there was nothing I could do, but I can do something now. I can change my thinking. I can discipline my mind. Why beat myself up and ruin my weekend for no reason?! Life is long and hard but there’s no reason for me to make it harder for myself.