Learning by Doing
Recently I moved my business and my family to a place that wasn't right for me. It's a great place with great people and a great vibe, but it wasn't MY vibe.
So I moved to somewhere different, somewhere that IS my vibe. I love where I am now, my family's happy, my business is up again (with a new and improved model), and I have no regrets.
A few acquaintances (more than a few, actually) chastised me for wasting money, effort, resources, and time by making these moves in my life. I learned a LOT, though. And what I learned, I'd like to try and share with you here.
I learned that NOT ALL PLACES ARE THE SAME.
The single line that I heard the most from my well-meaning detractors was, "Everywhere you go, there you are," or "One place is just as good as the next place." Words to that effect.
All I can say is that I'd rather live by the beautiful seashore than in a parched desert, and I'd rather live surrounded by beautiful trees than on a flat tundra. I'd rather live in a climate that suits human life, rather than one that requires snow-shoes and parkas. I'd rather live in a place where most people take it slow and easy than one in which no one has a moment to stop and say "Hi...how are you today?" and then listen attentively while you tell them.
And I surely learned that not all people are made for the same places. Some people LOVE New York City, and some don't. They may find it terrifying. I know I do. I find it dirty and speedy and nerve-wracking. Some people thrive on that. That's great. I don't.
I guess one big reason that my Music has continued to change and grow so much is that I have so much TIME for it, and seclusion affords me the ability to concentrate my whole attention on it. Having nature surrounding me just inspires me. I can't very well be a REAL jazz musician with these kinds of tastes!
And that's something I've learned, too.
I'm NOT a jazz musician (whatever that may be) in that my Music is too vast to be put in a box. It's like a Spiritual Sea. It takes me all over the map, and I can't steer it in one specific direction. The truth is that so much "jazz" today totally bores me stiff. Most of what I hear is acrobatics. Sports. Ego rules and Spirit withdraws.
Oh, how holy and sacred my Music is becoming to me (see and hear my video Love and Hate) and how EASY and NATURAL it is for me to do.
It just pours out like water over stones.
It's all imrovised (except for a few boundaries and melody lines) and it thunders and it whispers, it speaks softly and it roars mightily.
Everyone seems to be debating whether Keith Jarrett is playing jazz or not. It seems to me we shouldn't care. We should cherish what he does. He does it better than anyone, he's a gift from the heavens, and he keeps making these beautiful visions in the air with his artistry. He's too big for any box.
I think we ALL are too big for any box.
So I learned these things, and, while reading some of my earlier posts, have to control myself from taking them down and running them through the "secure delete" function on my Mac. But then I think: they're all true, at different points in time. We learn as we go.
I learned that we are all allowed 467 regular-sized mistakes in life. Since I'm only up to around 258, I figure I'm doing okay. Super-sized mistakes are represented by super-sized crimes, like murder or molestation or similar really evil stuff, and some of THOSE mistakes can take out your 467 alottment in a flash.
Not so with moving to a place that you find doesn't suit you.
So I learned a lot. I learned that I'm fixated on the beauty of nature, that I can't do without nature. I have to see a tree when I look outside.
I have to see colors when I open my eyes in the morning.
I have to hear silence most of the time to make Music.
I have to have stillness in my life.
I can't play small and I can't be anyone but who I am and I won't play games to play Music. Music is Art and Art is LIFE and it all has to swing and swing HARD! (It may be a hip-hop beat but it swings just the same!)
And I HAVE to have a little dog.
Angel, the Boston Terrier, 2013