I have just submitted Be Still to the Independent Music Awards for 2018. I appreciate all of the love from this song. So many people have sent me heart-warming messages and I think this song can duke it out with the big dogs. All you have to do is pop in and vote for Be Still and let that pouring of goodness change the world from the inside out.
I know many of you have heard the original version of this recording, but the new EP contains a much warmer version mastered by Alex Saltz [APS Mastering]. I couldn't begin to tell you from where this song comes in my heart. But I can say it is a grand shift in my consciousness to begin to let goodness and love into my life. Its brought my wife and I closer together. It's made playing with my children all the more pure and has given me the drive and energy to keep refracting the stories that surround us all into the shapes and sounds of our honest emotions. For a long time I was so against pop music. I even wrote a song called "Kill the Popstar" with my band Proximity Butterfly back in the day. It was about big companies pumping up perfect beauties, crafting 4 chord catch phrases and monetizing off of people's admiration of youth and sexual desire. It enraged me that music would amount to that. And I felt an obligation to change as much as I could. You see, I couldn't write essays like my friends in college. Graduate school was so hard because my mind saw the world in a very different way than the way a textbook described. I believed my vocabulary was obsolete, and according to Hegel, non-existent. So I threw the academics to the wayside, abandoned music altogether and decided to move to a communist country and live at the lowest means possible.
When I first arrived in China, I made less than $3,000/ year and yet rooted myself deep into the things I loved, exploring the caverns of people's minds. I'd sleep in monasteries 3 to 4,000m up in the foothills of the Himalayas, drink snake wine with monks and watch things only read about in books. I even met a living Buddha on a bus-ride towards Tagong. He was going to various temples in the area to get verified as a living Buddha. He had already received most of his verifications and required only 2-3 more. This little boy told me stories and slept with his head in my lap. It reminded me of how much this life is a gift.
I taught philosophy at Chengdu Li Gong University and meddled with students that dreamed of one day seeing something bigger than what they had. It changed the inner workings of who I was, made me more compassionate and understanding. And better yet, it brought music back into my life. You see, I had never studied Chinese before and so it was slow to come. But when the Green Leaf beer was pouring in the wee hours of the night, a guitar would come out and rapturous joy was had in a way that rang so special to me. So, when I had abandon the song, the song came back to find me, to erect in me the voice that made sense. And to this day, that inner song continues to thrive and seek ways to redefine the most authentic means of self-representation. There are many stories and I assume there will be many blogs/books down the line, but for now, understand the gravity of these meanings and know that our voices are carried through time by the vessels that express our most genuine tone.
The music I write, or let flow through me, is not trivial or seeking to represent a market dynamic. It's the soul-food that makes up all expression. Please take the time to support my song here. Click the link and share it with a friend or two. And know that it's not for fame or reality TV spectacles, but for representing the true natures that we face as a people. Thanks. And as always, hugs.