So much has changed in the past five years in the world but most particularly in the UK and will continue to change in 2013. By this summer I believe there will be social unrest because of the massive changes about to hit the poorest people in society, myself included. Even though I am well-educated and have many privileges, having more money than I need to survive on is not one of my advantages in life. By this summer, I may be in the situation of having less money than I need to survive on in order to pay my rent and council tax.
So what do you do when financial disaster strikes?
It's obvious! Write a Jane Eyre "Opera".
OK, maybe it's not obvious, but for me it is psychologically if not fiscally sensible. Writing music and performing it makes me feel powerful, alive, on top of the world even if my life has fallen to pieces, more than that, writing songs and music expels my demons, heals me from bereavements and worries, it has some kind of magic or spiritual power even beyond this.
Whenever I write a lot of music, songs or a lot of prose and stories, my life transforms itself and I end up in situations that are stranger than any fiction, more bizarre than any coincidence you could imagine, usually linked to the creative material I worked on previously. I know it sounds crazy but that's OK, some people reading this will understand and the majority will be sensible and will not.
The idea behind my Jane Eyre project is this :
I have started to write a series of guitar-based acoustic songs based on the themes contained in the novel Jane Eyre.
Some parts I have been forced to skip for now because through writing lyrics and singing them I find I become engulfed in the emotions of the book. That's what I want, not to write a series of superficial songs that tell a story third hand but to actually feel and reinterpret the emotions, thoughts and ideas of the book. It is an amazing novel which I became drawn to from an early age and from which I have found many parallels in my life. However getting into the heart of Jane Eyre’s childhood is at times traumatic.
I also had the notion to write the songs so that they could be performed as bounded entities without the context of Jane Eyre. I hope to perform some at acoustic or folk clubs and recently started working again with Steve Clear who is now playing Celtic harp.
I get bored very easily and also need money, so perhaps my plans will go awry. I can certainly see myself doing some of the numbers in a totally different way, perhaps as Javanese, Japanese, Indian, electronic, psychedelic experimentations with a bit of folk, funk, classic rock and blues added for good measure.
Either I will dither and divert my music or have composed the skeleton for an "opera" or a musical in the next few weeks.
Please leave a comment and if you have difficulty leaving a comment please email me to say hello.
If anyone out there knows of composer’s funds I can apply for I would be most grateful.
Hoping for Love and Peace in 2013 for all of us, as well as enough money to survive on!
P.S. Maybe a politicised version of Robin Hood would make a better opera right now.