Leaving Dalyan

August 21, 2014

I looked at the time and it was 1:11 AM. I am sweaty, empty, my voice is rough and it seems I can’t even play my simplest songs with any sort of beauty. Tonight was my last show in Dalyan. After the show I went to the jazz bar, the owner there wanted to hear me. I obliged, music whore that I am… The minute the guitar came over the speakers I knew this was going to be painful. Not memorable. The guitar sound is thin, nasal, dead. I sound thin, nasal and dead. I feel a freak, I am out of place out of energy out of a directional sense of anything. People politely watch. Clap. What am I doing… All the finesse is gone, It’s a struggle, I want to vanish in thin air, the guitar sounds like a banjo, my voice is making me a huge favor barely carrying some of those notes despite the dry throat, the strained vocal from the last 12 days of playing non-stop. And the most important ingredient, The Heart, it is dessicated. What am I doing?

Last night I could not sleep much at all, couldn’t, I actually haven’t for a while… too much things in my head, too much noise from the physical world and from my mind. Too much of a feeling of having corralled myself into the wrong place. having hurt people unintentionally and now being absolutely guilt ridden to the point of self hate. I was aimlessly pacing back and forth, inside the flat, then on the streets outside into the wee hours, meeting drunk and horny men that give you a feeling of hopelessness about the whole lot of us on this earth. I don’t want to put a judgement yet, but I think I don’t like this place. Maybe I actually hate it. I was supposed to stay here and work at the cafe until somewhere down the line in September. But I’m leaving.

My life right now has thoroughly discombobulated on all levels. Job, music, money, personal. Job wise, no customers, Goddawful playing conditions where me and the little guitar have to compete with Guns and Roses, Lady Gaga and a karaoke bar across the street all blaring sound towards the street which is to say towards me. A few days into the gig I was asked to play cover songs ’cause my stuff was not cutting it. Too quiet. No, really, to cut it I would have needed a Marshall stack and Forrest on Gretchen with the double kick and maybe we would have stood a chance for a fair fight. And with the absence of customers the patron is impatient, I feel the bad vibes and I get nervous make mistakes, get more nervous.

3 days into the gig they asked me to play covers… this is when I should have bowed out. but I stuck with it because of a stupid sense of responsibility.. commitment. Play happy stuff, stuff people know. My whole being went in a knot. I dont’ play covers… So dutifully I spent a good 4 to 6 hours a day searching, downloading, writing, practicing new songs. I suck at covers… Stress. Yeah, that’s how it works in this business… no customers, get the musician to be a clown. I struggled like mad to learn this bunch of songs,succeeded on some, failed on most. And that unsuccessful struggle brought my confidence down under my toenails. A performer with no confidence is a dead performer

And after I left Istanbul everything that was there fell apart. My home situation and my personal life… Right now, I’m totally out of wind. I hurt.

it all coalesced last night. again a phone call changed things irremediably.

The first event that brought relief to this mess that was looking like a bad infection about to burst was to decide to leave Dalyan. From my standpoint now, with the luxury of looking back at the events that took place since I left Istanbul it is as if a whole energetic field that was holding all of what was my world in equilibrium completely collapsed the minute i left.

Now what?… I fucked up. Made the wrong call. Now I go back to Istanbul, to no home, no work, no idea. Empty.

Meron is gone, Mahir is gone. there is no home. no gigs. I am holding to my meagre savings from working here. I’ve been eating 1 meal a day and a few pieces of fruit around that meal hanging on to my liras.

Oh and I almost forgot… I had been asked me to purchase my flight to come here and then I’d be reimbursed once I was here…. Yes, yes, you see it coming… tonight I was told that “maalesef” there were electrical and plumbing problems in the cafe so now there is no cash to reimburse me for that flight. I didn’t even get mad or sad. There is a vague possibly that maybe a friend in Istanbul after a bit of time might, could, maybe get that money back and if I want to come here for a holiday, I’m welcome anytime…. yeah, this time the joke is on me. The irony of all this is that if I calculate what I spent to come here, and what I made here. It’s even. Yeah, the joke is definitely on me.

Bekir said it wasn’t stupid. It was experience. Yeah baby.

Tomorrow morning I head out North. I’ll put my thumb up and carry my life on my back. See how that goes. In a way the idea of being flattened by a semi-truck is seductive, it would save the world a bunch of trouble and patheticness.

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One Response to “Leaving Dalyan”


  1. You will survive this. And be all the stronger for it.


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