Sunday morning talk story:
Lounging in my flat listening to a remix of Rolling Stones w/Bossa Nova beats- SWEET stuff. I love how music brings one back to a specific place and time. This mix brings me back to Istanbul 4 years when I was living there temporarily and focusing on yoga classes. So I had just left Hawaii and my boyfriend and my cat. It was time to exit the relationship, yet so difficult to sever relations, as with all my relationships. I moved to Hawaii and he to New Jersey... Likely I got the better end of the deal... I kid, I kid, and I'm sure he is reading this, as we always seem to float back to one another when in the same city at the same time.
So I was living in Ortakoy at my friend Ebam's. It was a long journey to get to yoga class each morning, and the scorching summer heat didn't help things any. Dutifully I would don my garb every morning and trek down the steep hill to catch the first of two buses that would drop me off at the Yoga Shala in Nisantasi. So I would put on my headphones to avoid dealing head-on with possible stares/reactions I would receive. I always toned down my 'look' with something loose of course, but still... the looks continued.
Now, I had something like 40 days of continuous music on my iPod, as I was the girlfriend of a DJ for years so there was no want for a lack of choice of music to listen to. But 'Bossa & Stones' were the choice tracks for the times- 'Fool to Cry' being an especially delicious remix...Over and over again. To this day I likely remember every detail, every thought, every feeling from that time. It is for this reason that I write as well. This thing, life, it is precious and necessitates documentation of some sort- in my mind anyway. This is the true art of ethnography. My words are my personal time capsule to my events deemed important to remember.
Another relationship necessitated listening to 'G Love' & 'Cake' constantly. Yet another was Maxi Priest. And then that one guy, it was 'Supreme Beings of Love' that I listened to. The Turkish death metal musician... what did I listen to? I can't remember... Oh yea, Burhan Ocal & the Trakya All Stars. The Barry White phase, that was a sweet loss... Groove Armada, another lovely memory.
Currently enjoying the Bossa & Stones revisit this morning, and thinking I'll have to drop 'him' an email this week & catch up on our separate lives. Also thinking about the Turkish Airlines direct flight from Istanbul to New York City leg of my journey en route back to Hawaii next summer... Hmmm. Why is he the only person I know not tech savvy enough to have a Skype account?
But I digress... back to my headspace this beautiful Fertile Crescent kinda morning: Music... The fog has lifted, creating a higher ceiling leaving me more space to breathe it seems. I should be listening to Chaka Khan, as that has been the theme this week ('One Night in Tunisia' live track featuring Chaka Khan with Herbie Hancock & Stanley Clarke just rocking it at the Roxy years back). Now, there's an "Every Woman" for sure. Damn that girl. She's my heroine. The era of her & Rufus & Herbie Hancock & Stanley Clarke & Miles Davis, etc... sultry music that just slowly rocks your body into a rhythmic pulse of good vibes.
A recent hiccup this week, in the form of my iPad insisting on having a mind of its own and somehow sending an email without my express permission... (don't you just HATE it when that happens), prompted me to write this entry. I lost track of my thoughts and started writing a blog entry, instead of keeping with the theme of the email...
I was reminded of how music from a region has a lot to do with cultural relativism. For example, extreme northerners have a fascination with dark, heavy death metal. Is it due to the months of extreme cold and darkness? What led me to this thought was doing a search of what the acronym COB stood for. First I found (mistakenly) 'College of Bahamas', and then (mistakenly) 'Children of Boredom'- a black Finnish death metal band. Now, this amused me so I listened in. Totally distracted from my initial search at this time now. I related this music & region, to what I was involved in back home in Hawaii. Maui's underground dance scene, in its inception back in the 90's was where it began for me. First my fascination with DJ's, and then the music that I learned to love separately. The love of music stemmed from the feelings it brought- to my mind and body. The release of logical thought. The booming bass (remember, it's all about the bass); the nocturnal parties underneath the full moonlight; the intimate, primal locations of the soirees inside caves, on the beach, on high bluffs overlooking the beach; the sensory perception of all breathing things in its most highest form of goodness; the close community of individuals all brought together by a communal love of life & music. Inhibitions had no dignity at these gatherings- a feeling all too familiar in today's greater society. I learned so much from embracing these experiences.
So, this is the abrupt end of this chapter. Time to seize the day. I leave you all while listening to... "I'm Every Woman'" w/Chaka Khan. The music fits the man, as it always does because The Melody Remain the Same?
For your listening pleasure:
Chaka: A Night in Tunisia
Bossa & Stones: Fool to Cry
Supreme Beings of Leisure: Under the Gun
Chaka Khan: I'm Every Woman