Lately and my holidays and New Year wishes

December 24, 2015

I saw my friend Majid play on the street. Majid is from Iran, he’s been here a few times, we played together at Atolye Kuledibi. He was playing by Galata Tower with someone on accordion, an effects pedal that takes the place of drums for him. He was wearing a big colorful poncho that gave him the air of a romantic gypsy. He was playing his Paul Reed Smith guitar, eyes closed, emotions shaping his face. I made sure he didn’t see me. I figured that if he didn’t let me know he was here, he didn’t really care seeing me. I wanted to capture a good photo without him seeing me. I took some pictures then walked away. The pictures didn’t turn out so well but here is one.


Tuesday I went to Migros the grocery store, I saw my friend Ozkan, he said he was looking for something for breakfast, he had been practicing, he had headphones on, listening to music. When is the last time I practiced? That night I was playing at Jurnal, some musician friends walked in, they had been working on new songs they said. I felt so un-musician. I have not written a song in … so long. Murat came to see me play, he said he would like to play with me and drums and keyboards… play some sort of avant-gard music, with more aggressive rhythms. Yeah I would like this, in principle, I would like this very much, but will I be able to do anything? Last night I pulled the guitar out of the case, I couldn’t feel any music.


No inspiration. Yet if you’d ask me what my wish would be, it would be to be able to tour and sing and play all over. It is a contradiction.

But at least I have my little camera with which I can be creative. The hunt for the images is addictive. The subject : Istanbul is inexhaustible. I actually have a deep longing to create… right now I often feel images, colors, things on the edge of my mind, teasing, asking me to hear, see, execute them, but too easily these days I obey the law of least effort and end up wasting my time on a lot of useless things online.


Maybe it’s an incubation period. So many things are rolling in my mind… I feel a desire to draw, a desire to make videos for my songs. I started courses in web programming, web design, I want to study grammar, write better, I’m reading Zola and that literature is blowing my mind… the writing, the eloquence… But when my time comes, nothing is there. I’m not angry or frustrated about it… just kind of perplexed.

But don’t go thinking life is dreadful because of this, life is incredibly sweet these days in the way that everything seems infused of beauty and grace and wonder. I look around and cannot stop the awe. The colors, the shapes, the motion. Everywhere I look there is history, impossible juxtapositions of architecture, necessity and history. We’ve been blessed with a lot of sunshine this fall, it’s warm, there has not been the endless rains yet and the warmth, the gold of the light is impossibly beautiful. I am awed.


I feel very grateful too these days. I have food, warmth, lots of love in my life, I live in an amazing city. A Canadian friend recently asked me: When will you come back? How long will you stay? Why do you stay? What about the political situation? Will you ever come back? I had no answers. I have no answers. There is a way of life here that is so unlike North America, I fear I would be at odds if I came back. Here you don’t live to make money, you live life. Here I have so little but I have so much. Last time I went to Los Angeles I was dismayed to really grasp how much my friends were rushing like mad every minute of the day, not having time for what matters, just keeping the wheels of the corporate machine rolling. Here I can live and not even know my home address for months on end. Different worlds. At the same time, some things have proven really difficult to achieve, to even think of making an album project or concert for example, people commit then flake out regularly or the opposite is that they become overbearing, treating me like a child, which I definitely am not anymore. I think the language and cultural barriers have something to do with this, I will keep on dreaming, maybe the will, the connections and the stars will align. In the mean time I am accumulating images, videos, experiences, something might arise out of the entropy.


The job is good albeit exhausting on the week ends. I love my co-workers. I love the students, I love the feeling of being able to give them something. I now work 3 days a week and it’s as much as I am willing to do. Saturday and Sunday I have two days with 10 classes each in a row. It is gruesome. So much noise, The kids are lawless and filled to the gills with sugar. They are so loud my skin almost lifts, my ears hurt and my whole being is in shock and asks for mercy. After ten classes I just am fried… but it pays the bills now so I’m going along but also looking around for new opportunities, it appears that I could find work that could easily pay twice as much. If that happened, I could maybe then “finance” an album project? How cool would that be!

I keep on. Life is beautiful I am immensely grateful I love you all. I wish you the best Christmas, New Year’s day and the best year so far in your life for 2016. For this earth I wish for Peace. Love. The end of all wars. The atonement of the dictators and mad men, the rising of the consciounesses towards light, understanding, empathy and kindness.



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