Some of my favorite moments and memories consist of being out on the road wearing a hat over greasy hair and some of the same travel clothes for days. Stepping out of the van barefoot to see the sights, the wind blowing my clothes as I look out over the expanses, I feel free of earthly possessions, free of the need to control how I look and feel, and free of the expectations of the outside world. Truly anonymous in a hat, I travel from town to town in and out of diners and cafes with my face slightly obscured. I’m just a traveler blowing through, never promising anything to anyone. I’m a transient presence for a moment and then I’m gone.
Music is where I go when I wish to step out of current time and space.
There is no Control mechanism in there playing on my conscious or unconscious mind telling me I must, should or am obliged to be doing something or other.
It is my place of Zen or a form of meditation if you prefer.
It’s the only place where everything external stops other than the immediate Now and I feel at peace in my own world.
I like to put sounds together to see what will happen. Often with words, sometimes not. The way they synthesise is an endless source of enjoyment and wonder to me. I never know where it’s going to end up and that is the main joy.
The debut single of my music project Euphemia Rise is also the story of two collaborations. The first between me and Mel Benedichuk, who provided the extra vocals for this track. And secondly the collaboration with visual artist Itzel Bernal for the official video of the single.
Music has always been said to be a universal language, but I don’t agree. Music has as many meanings as people who listen to it. What for us can be a sad melody, for someone from the other side of the world, it can be the happiest of songs, that’s why I refuse to believe that music is universal. However, I don’t think this is a problem, but an advantage to be able to communicate with ourselves. Art shows us the reality that we need to see.
My band Vazum‘s new album Vampyre Villa has a variety of moods and styles which people have picked up on. It floats between deathrock, shoegaze, goth, and post-punk which is why we call ourselves a deathgaze band. We’re interested in combining the rawness of deathrock with the depth of shoegaze.
I’ve been interested in a lot of different subjects and have tried to learn numerous skills over time — digital art, programming, web design, (briefly) robotics, among others — but most I either eventually decided weren’t for me, or I have a very on & off relationship with, being deeply interested and practicing it for months, and then spending the next year completely forgetting about it.
But everything about music — the production of it, how instruments are made, the history of music and its influences on cultures — that is the one thing I have always been fascinated by. I loved finding new music and wanted so badly to either play an instrument or even somehow make new music myself.
Being diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia when I was around twenty-six (being honest) was a relief. I had always known. The way my brain worked was neither sustainable nor healthy. The professionals who help me think I suffered from childhood-onset schizophrenia and that I could almost function with it for whatever reason.
My stage name is Mason Andrew Freak, but everyone calls me Drew. I have lived in my car, abandoned trailers, and isolation. And all with the dream that it was for a purpose. With hope, God had a plan for me.
Yes, I’ve done it, just about. Okay, it’s been closer to a year and a half, a couple of those albums were EP’s, one was a single, etc., but I’ve done it, just about. Five more releases, and I’ll have recorded as much music as The Beatles.
The spherical ball flew flyingly through the damn autumn leaves like a nauseating plane that was too small and round to be in any way practical. But flew it did, having been propelled as it had by Adam’s fearsome left foot. The kids who lived in Miyashita-koen still tell stories about that left foot and use words like “fearsome” and “left”. I stood vertical in the goalmouth, a moth to the flame, a fish in a barrel, a horse to water, and did what any decent Thursday morning goalkeeper is obliged to do: I saved the potential goal so hard and crushed the dreams of the understandably confident Adam.
Life during the lockdown and one finds oneself turning to the online world for community, support, and solace. The pandemic is a global phenomenon after all, and it would seem by the swell of blogs and posts on social media that millions of people the world over are doing the same. Social media explodes with information, disinformation, misinformation, distraction, and instruction.
One of the most shared posts by the online artistic community tells me ‘use the pandemic and the new reality to write that song, that novel, that screenplay you’ve always wanted to’ but this merely serves to impose a feeling of guilt -after all learning to adapt to the restrictions is difficult enough without the added pressure of trying to summon the muse and create new music.
What if I have no new ideas at my immediate disposal to inspire new tunes or fresh ideas to share with other musicians, let alone an audience?