My label, SA Recordings , introduced another regular segment - Citations: a series of inspirational source materials from SA artists. My selections for my LP ‘3’ are listed below, and further down you can find a little more information on each one of them and which song they informed, if you are curious!
While the writing is current, the inspirations that in the end informed the album span several years. Many things that resonated within my heart get collected, but only some pieces, that want to make themselves heard and that particular moment in time, surface back up into my consciousness while writing a piece of music and ultimately assembling an album.
The most important piece of writing, one that guided me through this new chapter in my life, has to be “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House’ by Audre Lorde. Her words but also her life and her other writings opened my heart and mind. “The Chair” wouldn’t have been possible without her guiding spirit.
I am disappointed in my school education that neither Audre Lorde nor bell hooks, who gave me words about this “imperialist white supremacist capitalist patriarchy" when I had none, ever found their way into my curriculum, but thankfully in life we can choose our own curriculum.
David Grieg’s play, "The Events” shook my soul and was a deep experience when it comes to stage craft. It had been years since I saw it at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2013 and at the time I did not think, 'oh what a great idea for my album’s performance' but once the album was finalised I remembered the power of this play and especially the choirs that change in every city the play is performed. The piece is based on a far-right mass shooting, and while this is always something “happening over there” the unrehearsed youth choirs act as vehicle to bring the story into the "right here and right now” - this experiences formed a reality for this album. To then premiere the music with the Brooklyn Youth Chorus was a dream come true for the music to find it’s way into the world.
Buffy Sainte Marie’s music has been with me for some years too, but bubbled up while finishing this album. She has a force and wisdom in her writing and especially “Little Wheel Spin and Spin” is a masterpiece and has been greatly inspiring in writing “Fishermen”.
Another piece of music I carried in my heart for years is “Into my Arms” by Nick Cave. I remember first seeing the video on MTV when it came out and the song and visuals had planted itself into my heart. “May The Angels” was answering to that song.
The sentiment of the song “Aimee Mann” was inspired by how Mark Oliver Everett describes real life Aimee Mann in his book “Things The Grandchildren Should Know”. I read him and her as ever wandering souls that are seeking their true journey.