Sleeping has not been coming easy since I left New Jersey. I’m used to a full uninterrupted 7 hours and that’s just not happening. It’s like I’m In a Twilight kinda resting thing. I finally put some heavier curtains over the windows since the moon is so bright. A local woman told me to “make friends with the moon”. But since it’s really cold here at night, I haven’t gone out and introduced myself as yet. I suppose that is up to me as the moon is trying to make its way into my little casita, and I am simply pissed off that it is trying to do just that. I will go outside this evening and make acquaintance in a more formal way.
New Mexico kinda requires pragmatic New York cynicism to unravel. Otherwise, I would be inclined to run back east as fast as I can. It’s definitely closer to the world of the spirit here. It’s the land of Mañana. Everyone has always told me that. I think they are correct. There is something incredibly magical about this place.
I went to my first open mike on Monday night. It was time. I needed some tavern type interaction. If it weren’t for the adobe walls and all the turquoise, I would have though the crowd was a frenchtown/upperblackeddy crowd. A woman playing the banjo was on stage and she could very well have been Shekina. Her partner was a beautiful dreadlocked woman singing and playing guitar. I felt instantly at home.
The open mike tribe is here in Taos.
I played 3 songs, 2 originals… The altitude was really compromising my voice, but I forged ahead regardless. I basically sucked, but it was fine to not be at my best. It didn’t matter. I’ve always put so much pressure on myself to play well in public, and have felt bad about myself when I haven’t.
But that’s changed. I don’t need to be a great musician. Music is my best friend, always has been. But I’ve put way too much pressure on myself to perform the best I can. All that pressure has taken the joy out of it. I am now embracing the flaws, the inconsistencies, the memory lapses that age brings, the rhythm quirks that happen because of not practicing enough, the incorrect chord, note, etc… All fine. It’s not important.
I’ve discovered that playing music gives me energy. It’s not like I didn’t know this, but it’s as if I just discovered it fresh and new. Music taps into the life force. The life force that give me energy to paint. I knew this, but it’s become crystal clear since I’ve been here. Letting go of having to be perfect, and beating myself up if I’m not, is allowing music to BE all the magic it can be.
Maybe I’ll play a song for the moon tonight.
Maybe she’ll let me sleep.