Here, There and Everywhere

Posts tagged ‘music’

Let It Run Deep

61gbBPp8TJL._AC_US218_More Than Simple Words: Reality vs Love
by Xcaliber Anthony and Derrick Marrow.
Reviewed by Gabriel Constans.

The best way I can review this intimate collection of poetry by Mr. Anthony and Mr. Marrow, is to write a poem about it. Here is my reaction to More Than Simple Words.

Rhyming, lyrical, longing and love
More than simple words is all the above
It whispers of grief, trust, and intimacy
with sublime and insightful legitimacy

These poets hearts are crying for freedom
and reveal the depths of our racism
Redemption, pain and peace travel steep
and the words are laid plain for us all to keep

If you love love, and don’t want it to sleep
read More Than Simple Words and let it run deep.

One of my favorites from the authors revealing collection is One Love.

You keep my tongue in ecstasy
The mental images bless me
Your rapture keeps me stress free
Emotions change when you caress me

I study your history
I don’t repeat those mistakes
When I’m gone you miss me
I know what’s at stake

My mind revels in your rhythm
Passion entered my system
You schooled me with your wisdom
You flowered this lifeless stem

Wrong words can cause a schism
so I watch what I say
We split preconceptions like a prism
for you eternally I’ll stay

My lips wait and wish for your kiss
As a kid I never imagined this
You took the mental cuffs off my wrists
We too struggle to attain bliss

Now we play music fingerless
remember the world is yours
Tighter than a clinched fist
we shine brighter as we mature

Love the One You’re With

Jennifer’s Triad by Laura Ann Turner
Reviewed by Gabriel Constans.

51PA33ULYsLA recent study of polyamory (being in a relationship with more than one person simultaneously) says, “By some estimates, there are now roughly a half-million polyamorous relationships in the U.S., though underreporting is common. Some sex researchers put the number even higher, at 4 to 5 percent of all adults, or 10 to 12 million people.” With the number being so high, especially among younger generations, why aren’t there more stories about people involved in such? Jennifer’s Triad is a good start. The usual romance about love, jealousy, and ever-after, is blown out of the water.

This novel is about a young rocker, just out of high school, named Jenny (Jen), who while in a relationship with Emilia (Emi), joins an all-girl (and lesbian) band called The Coldhearts. One of the band members is Nellie. It isn’t long until Jen begins having fantasies, attractions, and dreams about loving Nellie. She feels confused, because she also loves Emilia. It takes her quite awhile, and the help of band member Bette, before she acknowledges how she’s feeling and gets the nerve to talk to both Emi, and Nellie. She tries to tell Nellie that she doesn’t love her any less, but it doesn’t go well.

Jennifer’s Triad explores jealously and possessiveness with insight and realism. Without giving anything away, it is a hard road Jen takes when she is finally honest with herself and those she loves. The scenes with the band living, practicing, and playing together, is also a highlight and interspersed abundantly throughout the book. Jen describes a set playing before a crowd when it almost feels like they’re having sex on stage, because of the unison and high they are experiencing. There are also an abundance of erotic scenes (in Jen’s head, and with her awake body and girlfriends) that will wake your senses.

Ms. Turner’s tale takes place in several cities in Germany, including Hanover, where Jennifer lived and went to school until her mother kicked her out for being gay. All of the characters are well developed, and believable (Emilia, good friend Martin, her Dad, her Dad’s wife, Sabrina, and all the band members, especially Nellie). Jen is especially well written, which is vital, seeing that the story is told in the first person from her perspective. If you’re open to reading a love story that moves beyond girl meets girl, girl loses girl, girl gets girl back, pick up Jennifer’s Triad.

 

 

 

To Be or Not To Be

41SUqh9JdSLNobody In the Box – A Poem by Soodabeh Saeidnia. Illustrated by Seyedeh Masoumeh Hosseini. Reviewed by Gabriel Constans.

Nobody In the Box is completely outside the box (in English and Farsi). In fact, it is neither in nor out, of any sense of containment. The illustrations, by Ms. Hosseini, which accompany each section of the poem, brilliantly and beautifully compliment the words, and stand on their own as exquisite works of art. Ms. Saeidnia writes about emptiness within emptiness, and the friction between being and not being, with just a whiff of Persian poets Hafiz and Rumi’s insight into being something greater than ourselves, yet also completely within us.

Expecting no assistance
From the ocean, the sky, and the earth,
Even from the box itself,
I can only turn into an invisible Wish
Waiting for a special event,
A phenomenan, a moment,
In which “nothing” may turn into “something”

Reading this poetry is like hearing a melody, and reminds us that everything is nothing and nobody, until we give it (or them) labels and meaning. Dr. Saeidnia’s work in various countries around the world, with pharmacology and an array of compounds, informs her understanding of how interdependent things (and people) are and how they can appear and disappear.

The box’s sigh penetrated space,
Bent the contours of time,
Surged forward and touched the nothingness
Nobody heard the box’s sigh,
Felt the pain of missing,
And for the first time Nobody wished:
“I wish I was somebody”

Nobody In the Box brings attention to desire, wishes, moments – all temporary and which may, or may not arise; and if so, from where, who and/or what? What is our reality? Are our bodies and minds like a box, wanting to be acknowledged, labeled, noticed, or have “something” happen? Are we the same as everybody else, with nothing to distinguish us from others? What is the essence of matter, and does it matter?

A Vegan Love Song

20150305_112156Wanna Be Cowgirl AKA Vegan Love Song
by Gabriel Constans
Video on YouTube

If you want to be a cowgirl, whose out on the run.
Sing to the cattle and sit on your bum.
Know people who eat cows, get sick and die young.
Their hearts just can’t take it, they wonder what’s wrong.

If you want to be a cowboy, and ride those hills.
You know it’s a lonely life, that can make you ill.
There’s stuff to step in, cold nights and hot days.
Knowing your destroying the earth, in tragic ways.

If you still want to be a cowgirl, you gotta do it right.
Keep the doggies moving, in herds day and night.
Use recycled water, to fill up their troughs.
No pesticides and lots of room to trot.

If you still want to be a cowboy, and get sunburned pores.
With blisters from pointy boots, and saddle sores.
Keep on believing, the romance of the west.
Walk bull-legged and be tougher than the rest.

It’s nothing personal, I can relate.
A lot of good people think cowgirls first rate.
But if we raise cattle, to slaughter and chew.
We must know what that does, to me, them and you.

Angelique Kidjo at Rio

Angélique Kidjo at Rio Theatre – June 19

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A true transnational artist, Angélique Kidjo’s African roots reflect brightly throughout her music. Heavily influenced by South African legend Miriam Makeba, Kidjo also absorbed the influences of the American popular artists from her youth, such as James Brown, Aretha Franklin, and Jimi Hendrix.

In the ’80s, she was among a new wave of African performers blending Western pop music with traditional African forms. The creative result was a revitalized world music, both entertaining and socially conscious. Her latest recording, named for her mother, Eve, honors all the women of Africa and puts Angélique’s strong voice back in the spotlight where she belongs. Dance space available!

Thursday, June 19, 7:30 pm – Rio Theatre, Santa Cruz

Words of Wisdom Album

I’m creating an album of original music that integrates many of the interviews I’ve done on my radio show over the past 17 years! I’m raising funds for the project through a new crowd-funding website that went online today. It’s a non-profit format, generosity-based and named after the Buddhist Pali word “dana.” The album will benefit Free Radio Santa Cruz and Food Not Bombs.

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Here is my two-minute video about the project: WORDS OF WISDOM

You can also go directly to the dana website and see the video and details and offer a contribution toward producing “Words of Wisdom” if you’d enjoy: https://dana.io/

Peace,
John Malkin

Dylan: Los and Found

From Yahoo Music
Arts & Entertainment

Dylan: The Lost Years

Bob Dylan’s 1970 album Self Portrait was so derided upon its initial release that Rolling Stone critic Greil Marcus opened his review with a simple question: “What is this shit?” Now, 43 years later, Rolling Stone is revisiting the time period around Self Portait — and some of Dylan’s most misunderstood music ever — with a cover story by Mikal Gilmore probing why Dylan burned down his career at the peak of his fame to save himself.

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With the help of Dylan’s new box set Another Self Portrait — which presents raw, unvarnished tapes from the Self Portrait sessions — Gilmore traces Dylan’s creative journey from his motorcycle accident in 1966 through his return to the pop charts in 1973 with “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door.”

Focusing on the largely untold story of Self Portrait’s creation, the cover story features new interviews with Dylan collaborators Al Kooper, David Crosby, Roger McGuinn, David Bromberg and Happy Traum. “I thought it was strange, strange, strange,” says Kooper of Self Portrait, which consists mainly of cover songs. “Why is the Shakespeare of songwriting doing other people’s songs? And why is he doing all these old folk songs? What’s going on?”

Read entire story at Rolling Stone.

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