I have always found writing in solitude, whether it's a song, an article or just a blog, incredibly soothing and relaxing for both mind and soul. If you also manage to play the music you love in the background and let your inner self take over the tangible "you" ....
To me, that's heaven on earth!
It has just gone past 1 a.m. EST, and being a natural "owl" and not an early bird, it's not surprising to find myself in front of the laptop with a cup of tea clutched in my hand, and piles of paperwork and this week's press cuts scattered across the table.
The music in the background? (No, not my own! I wouldn't be able to relax in that case.) "Color Me Kubrick" movie soundtrack is anything but commercial and dull (no, the two don't always go hand in hand!) although it does require a certain degree of concentration, peace and quiet. Granted!
Nothing gives me more satisfaction in my rare moment's of complete solitude like spending an hour flipping through brand new music, as well as previously undiscovered and perhaps not so commercially successful songs and artists and downloading the selection onto my iPod. I get almost as excited as I used to when I was a little girl, driving with Dad to the out-of-town record story in Russia ever other weekend to purchase the latest releases from the "capitalist world".
Do you ever come across a song that you really didn't like before and totally dismissed upon hearing it initially, but years later realize it's a real gem? That's precisely what I went through this evening as I listened to all sorts of records I've owned for years but never really took the time to "get into". And I suppose that's when you realize it's so worth making music, doing what you love the most, even though sometimes it's hard and next to impossible - like banging your head against the wall until you finally get your message across after trying relentlessly for so long.
Just before I started writing this blog, I watched a music video on youtube that really had inspired me on so many levels as a child, it's staggering! It was filmed in a recording studio in the early 90's and there's a puppy in the video - attending the session! - that I had so envied as a little girl, wishing I were him for an hour or two. I was fascinated by the concept of recording and the equipment took my breath away - it was so unlike anything else we had seen on MTV prior to that. One of those moments when you say to yourself: "This is it, that's what I want to do for the rest of my life!"
Of course it doesn't always work out that way, but when it does, albeit very rarely and perhaps not 100% according to the plan, there's nothing more gratifying for the soul and generally for the "inner child" whom we owe so much of our dreams, aspirations and where we are today - the reality at present.
So many of my friends wanted to become doctors, teachers, actresses and policemen when I was a kid. Whereas some of them had absolutely no idea what they wanted to do when they grew up.
For me, on the other hand, there was never a plan B. And I don't think that was necessarily a great thing, either. I was deprived of the flexibility to make one's own choices as an adult - in my case, there was no alternative option quite early on. It was either music, music or music - period.
As a result, I ended up trying a few additional tricks here and there to make sure it wasn't just a childhood whim or mental obsession of sorts. I studied journalism instead of music after high school, pursued foreign languages instead of concentrating on piano lessons and got a job as a UK Correspondent for a French women's interest magazine in Russia.
End result? I always kept coming back to what I loved the most deep down. It wasn't really about fame or mega success. In fact, I still don't have the urge to see my face on magazine covers.
True, it will be nice - we all have egos, after all. But the true purpose of the journey, the big goal down the road is somewhat different - and it's not so easy to express it verbally, to be honest.
Cynics will always say it's a cover up, but there is nothing more banal than defining one's goal in a mere sentence.
A certain degree of positive feedback, a minimal success is undoubtedly gratifying, I am sure. Yet what counts the most underneath it all isn't superficial, although it may be slightly cheesy for some to digest.
This wasn't really supposed to be an ode to childhood dreams, so please forgive the mumbling at this late hour.
As overdue work won't submit its own deadlines by itself, it is now time to get back to the real world and switch the music off once again.....
Good night, sweet dreams x