The story: This song brought me to a lot of realizations, one being that I am/you are/we are not the only ones going through certain situations life has brought our way. I had only been back in town for about two weeks from my extended tour/travel period between December and March and, as I was readjusting, I felt refreshed, I had fewer commitments, a lingering sense of adventure and a willingness to try new things. It all happened on April 13. I'd just signed up with Yoga on Gaia (highly recommended) to get my movement back and read up on and watch some videos on yoga practice. I watched a video called E-Motion the movie (https://www.facebook.com/emotionthemovie/) (ALSO highly recommended) learnt about the chakras, the foods to help improve those chakras and even the MUSIC and frequencies that ease those chakras (pretty neat). One of the really exuberant speakers, with his baritone voice, stressed the importance of listening to WHATEVER music you like! It doesn't matter if it's rap, or country, or pop, listen to what makes you feel good! That affected my thinking. It was like a hammer that tapped at my shell; I felt the first crack. Around 7 pm, I did something out of my ordinary, I played pick-up basketball with my bud, Nan Dito, who had borrowed my kit while I was away (he decided to hold my kit hostage if I didn't make it to the game, along with a bit of friendly figurative arm-twisting). Prior to Nandito's message, my gal Chelsey Bennett gave me a quick call and invited me to a sold-out show featuring an Australian artist, FATAI (https://www.facebook.com/FataiMusic/), who was performing at the Rivoli who would eventually blow my mind.
Let's get right to that.
When I arrived, an awesome local talent I hadn't heard of called NEFE was on and gave me chills up and down my body. She had the room hooked to her every sound like I'd never seen before. She also had a voice I'd never heard before. Once her set finished, Chelsey, as if she was my manager, gushes to NEFE about how killer her set was and how well I'd fit with NEFE and play and harmonize her music (you gotta love strong, empowering females who support one another <3). I thought NEFE was top notch. Well, Fatai comes up on stage and brings her own bag of top notch. I also hadn't heard her music before but her performance was of the most prepared, honest, adorable and touching artists I've heard. She reached out to each of us with her words, her embellishments, her fierce passion and gentleness. Real talk, she had me with her beautiful royal blue blazer, similar to the one my loving sister "borrowed" from me. Two amazing artists in one night!? I was ready to go home and get to work, but I stayed. Rather, I was kept there. Another strange thing happened in between NEFE's set and FATAI hitting the stage, I heard a recognizable laugh, it was Cielo. No, it physically couldn't be because we had just celebrated her one year's passing on March 27. I thought I'd heard her and spun around to actually see if she was there, or at least see who had such a distinguishingly similar laugh. "Zaynab?" Huh? "What is going on?" I'm thinking to myself. A beautiful woman with her partner comes through the thin crowd of people near the back bar, "Zaynab, right? You spoke at Cielo's memorial last year. I remember you." The truth is, I remembered her as well, I'm just awful with names the first three times we meet. I told her I thought I'd heard Cielo's laugh, she thought I was a little mental, but understandably so. We engaged in small talk and both knew we were in for an experience that evening. I'm standing there with Chelsey, thinking "I just heard Cielo's infamous laugh, a mutual friend came out of nowhere, this artist about to set fire to the stage is from Australia, like Cielo, and here I am, soaking up every second of this night”.
The show was inspiring beyond anything I could've imagined. FATAI talked to each of us so organically and cradled our hearts and ears with her words and voice. The audience participation was next level: Chelsey and I couldn't help but hold each other and harmonize to each of FATAI's songs (remember, I didn't know about her music until this evening) and we weren't the only ones!
You know when you don't know you need something then something/one comes to you and you realize "Oh! That's what I needed"? I had opened myself to receive life's opportunities and this was what came through. I was inspired by the range of music styles, the voices, the harmonies and lyrical content throughout the evening. I believe in alignment and everything that Friday, April 13 evening was in alignment.
I went home, turned on my voice recorder and didn't turn it off until I knew the song was complete. I had never thought up, written and fallen in love with a tune and had dreams and visions of its manifestation beyond its ink-on-paper form as quickly as I did that night. I woke up and, just like an anecdote from the Swarb! It Suits Him Well Tour where Dave Swarbrick had dreamt up a lovely song for his dear friends only to wake up in a rush to find a paper and pen to write it all down, I had the song in my head as fresh as it was the night before and here it is. From my heart and mind to yours!
I've attached a clip with the live process of writing this tune. *I was eating chocolate, I'm sorry ;p
**Shout out to C for being the big push behind my huge stride in coming out as a singer. She showed me that sharing a gift, a voice, is caring for ourselves and, as this post has reminded me, giving a push of support to others. <3
Don't forget to check out the track #2 - "Not The Only One"