2016 is breezing by and I was reluctant to take on another project. However, by April I was putting the finishing touches on a trip to Germany and the Netherlands, freelancing in game development, and answering miscellaneous questions about travel and language.
“Do you have any new music coming out?”
The answer isn’t simple: yes, no, and maybe. Normally at this time I would be preparing CDs and other promotional garbage in anticipation of meeting other dreamers at the ASCAP EXPO; yet, during my trip to Orlando last September I had persuaded myself to skip it in 2016 and every year thereafter. Nothing is more disheartening than the realization that you have spent thousands of dollars only to travel 60 miles west of your home. Not only that, but year after year it has been the same bullshit. Just looking at my feeds it is hard to decipher which year was which. All of it coerced me to reflect on what I was doing with my life, not just my music.
You run into people who wouldn’t speak to you had you not made it to Hollywood for the week. Hell, the entree at the roundtable luncheon is the same sad looking penne pasta, with a mousse cake the size of a dime for dessert, all of which you can’t eat because you’re trying maintain your composure, and conduct business as the speakers play musical chairs every 15 minutes. What a waste of $45! One thing for sure is that you should attend that Passman session on Saturday morning. Buy his book; it’s good and it will save you the trouble of trying to find accommodations in Hollywood in mid-Spring.
ASCAP and NAMM were the first to go, but surely not the last. I started to discard anything with stale energy, including stagnant friendships and strained relationships. Seeing the value of owning less, I’ve slowly reclaimed real estate. Minimalism entered into my vocabulary and the lifestyle attached to it was one that my father advocated. That man had it all figured out and yet I never took notice. Last Saturday I took four large garbage bags full of clothes, shoes, bags, and other items to Angel View, a resale boutique that donates their profits to helping disabled children and adults. The sight of the bags in the middle of my work studio were distracting and keeping me from utilizing the space to its full potential. Now I just need coffee, my pomodoro timer to kick ass and maybe an episode of Shahs.
So where was I? Oh, yes.
It was a long time coming. Maybe I had been fighting it all along. After all who wants admit they were wrong in accessing their journey, but this is also why pencils have erasers. Nothing is ever set in stone and well you can always yell, “PLOT TWIST!” and move on. Just adjust your sails and keep sailing, Sailor.
This time last year I didn’t think I’d be a dog mother, or that I would be going to a polyglot gathering instead of a music conference. Things change. People evolve. Need more proof? I chopped my locks. Anyone who has known me for more than 5 years knows my luxurious hippie hair. Assuring my husband that I had not gone crazy, it was simply me wanting a more sophisticated look and trying to get rid of my hair clips once and for all. I did it on a whim and I am happy with the results.
As far as language learning goes, Russian has been easier than German and now I can at least write full sentences rather than just vodka using the Cyrillic alphabet. Surprisingly, I’m loving German and Russian culture the way I love French culture (hence the name “Allez Elizabeth”). While musically things have remained somewhat stagnant, I no longer put myself through the endless hoops of self-doubt. On a recent phone call with my good friend Jai, I didn’t even skip a beat when I said I didn’t have any plans to release any music until after my return from Europe, and that’s if I felt like it.
“Definitely not hip-hop. I can’t say I’m dying to get on a mic and spit rhymes like that. Everyone’s a fucking rapper now. It’s just lost all meaning to me. It’s more soothing to me to scream into the mic like Zack de La Rocha.”
I was roasting Brussels sprouts dreaming of German beer and deep down content that I no longer held on to resentment, no longer brooding from the pointless trips to Santa Monica for events where people waited in line for their chance to become a talking head or in hopes that a B-lister would begrudgingly take a picture with them. You know for the Gram.
Allez Elizabeth was born on April 6th out of necessity. It is simply a vessel to allow me to channel the nomadic spirit that never really left me. Yes, yes, more food pictures, but also a few landscapes with my Nikon before it succumbs to the dust bunnies. Where there is a fine balance between wanting to live like Karen Walker, and going off the grid for at least six months. Waiting for Monday, tomorrow, or next year isn’t an option. I don’t expect it to be pretty nor perfect, but it will be one hell of a ride.
Get in loser, we’re going to travel!