Looking Into Someone Else’s Catharsis

I don’t know what to write tonight.  Sometimes I get this urge to blog, but I don’t have an impulse to blog about anything in particular.  It’s just this need to purge, to experience a catharsis of some kind.  Truthfully, blogging is not the catharsis I’m craving.  Playing my piano comes really close to what I need in those moments.  I wish I could write music.  I am convinced it’s something you’re born with, and I’m not.  I can play my piano.  I can listen to a song over and over and figure out how to play it, without seeing written music or anything.  That’s my “born with” skill.  Nobody ever taught me, nobody even gave me the idea.  I just started doing it when I was little.  Actually, it generally turns into my own arrangement of the song I’m learning.  I certainly can figure out the song, chord for chord, note for note, but it’s just more interesting and creative to put my own little touches in there. 

But I’m fascinated by those who can write music.  You can have this thing in you, and just let it pour out.  I’m fascinated with the process, how people put lyrics and melody and harmony and rhythm together.  Rob Thomas says, “I like the trip from having a song in my head, and walking around the streets with it in my head, to hearing it on a record.”  I walk around the streets all day with other people’s songs in my head, and there’s nothing new or creative in there!  🙂

More of Rob Thomas on writing:

You have to write it thinking no one’s ever going to hear it.  Sometimes you sit down, and it just pours out of you like it’s already been written, and you’re just singing it.  And sometimes it takes months and months to get it just the way you want it.

As a writer, it’s supposed to represent the best and the worst of you at the same time.  I think if you use it in the right way, you can take all your depressing stuff and get it out of you, and put it down, and have a place for it.  And then you can be happy most of the time, and you can go on with the rest of your life.

That’s what I’ve been blogging for all these years, I think.  And that’s why I’m constantly finding myself uncomfortable with the fact that people I know read my blog.  Especially people I don’t get to see very often.  You don’t get the typical me when you read this.  You get the best and the worst.  You get the ends of the spectrum that I just have to get out!  I write about everything I’m stressed about, everything I’m thinking about, everything I need to say.  And lots of times, I’m very very vague, or I talk around the issue, because I am so aware that most of the people who read this know me.  When Rob Thomas writes a song, he first assumes no one is ever going to hear it.  That’s how you get to that good place where you’re really telling the truth.  Now, when Rob Thomas writes a song, there’s a good chance people will hear it, and I wonder if he feels uncomfortable when the song gets to that point.  Like I feel uncomfortable when I write something really true, and cathartic. and brutally honest, and then people read it.  In this same interview, Rob Thomas mentioned that a songwriter has to marry someone really great, because if he has an argument with his wife, she might have to hear it on his next album for the rest of his music career! 

What Rob Thomas does is art.  (Isn’t it funny that famous people are always spoken of by both names?  Not Rob, not Mr. Thomas.  Rob Thomas.  That’s the only way to talk about him.)  This blog is not art.  It’s venting.

So instead, I leave you with the lyrics to a song that I am obsessed with today.  This is “Show Me How It Feels” by Hodges, who interestingly, only goes by one name…   🙂

One million times, one million more.  Can’t stop the fire.  You’re what I’m burning for.  I am your criminal, guilty of a sinful stare. 

You’re what my body needs, can I sell your soul please.  Take me on that wild ride, somewhere down deep inside.  I’m ready to walk on water.  Be my savior and…

Take me away.  Show me how it feels to be alive.  Make me your slave.  Work me every day and every night.  Show me how it feels to be alive.

One million times giving my confession.  I’m on your list, a dangerous obsession.  I can see the light.  Come on, save me.

Take me away.  Show me how it feels to be alive.  Make me your slave.  Work me every day and every night.  Show me how it feels to be alive.

My hands know what to do.  No sense in thinking it through.  I feel your skin giving in.  Don’t let the moment end.  We’ll let our worlds collide.  It’s you and me tonight.

One million times.  One million more.  Can’t stop the fire.  You’re what I’m burning for.  Let me see the light.  Come on and save me.

Take me away.  Show me how it feels.  Make me your slave.  Work me every day and every night.  Take me away.  Show me how it feels to be alive.

Wow, after listening and typing out the lyrics, I realize that I get sucked in by the harmonies and the rhythm, and maybe a word or a phrase, without knowing what the song is about.  Actually, none of us can really know what the song is about, unless Hodges himself tells us.  I know what it’s about for me, today, as I listen to it, but I don’t know what it was about for Hodges when he wrote it, or what it will be about for me when I listen to it tomorrow.  Anyway, the phrases the pulled me in this song were “you’re what I’m burning for,” and “save me.”  Passionate phrases, sung passionately, in passionate harmonic settings.  You gotta go to www.myspace.com/hodges and listen to this one to get the full effect!!!


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. martha
    Aug 25, 2008 @ 23:31:37

    hi…nice words!


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