[Harp-L] RE:songs of the hellish scenes I lived in to play music over the years

Thanks Surly Mac! I did a gig last night at an art gallery. It was not an art show, just my music. The gallery was set up with tables and chairs. There was a $5 cover and it was packed. People came out to hear music as the focus. I have been on pretty much a 10 year hiatius from playing live gigs because the quality of them has degenerated to music not being the reason for coming. On top of that with me making everything up as I go along such gigs are worthless. I need an interactive audience that is willing to open their hearts. 

Last night was the environment I need for Spontobeat to work. People came in and were there for music in an intimate setting. I explained what I do and as the music started I could feel the discourse in their souls. I am hyper-sensitive to peoples feelings(the root of spontobeat) and being out of the intimate listening focused club setting for so long it was like my first gig all over again. The difference this time is I didn't have the hopes of future stuff going through me like- will this lead to something that will lead to something that will lead to something........ that always was present when I was playing for my livelihood. I was just there playing like I do in my studio everyday. The tension in the room was big and I easily could have said screw this and left. It wasn't bad vibes, just confused vibes. Getting older and more relaxed with who I am let me not react to this and let things settle in in their own time. 

We as a people expect things and in this case, to see a musician with a somewhat of a blues backround, expectations are present. Several people were there that were stevie vaughn fans. when they heard I had one of his old guitars they got real excited. Expectations were there and I was not the one to fill them..... These things are subconcious and when I started performing the confusion in their souls started talking to me loud and clear. They weren't angry, just confused. I start and stop songs often if the groove doesn't feel right. I told stories, jokes, sang of addiction, poverty, wealth, social predjudices, death, hopelessness, shame for our wealth and what we could do with it instead of serving our own comfort, love, hate, violence, and other such topics as they flowed through me. Basically the all night spontaneous approach is an unknown to most music lovers. I could feel the audience getting stressed. they wanted this guy to play some stuff they
 expected. They were curious, wanted to dig it, but were off kilter with it. It wasn't so much a song per se but a feel they expect with a musical performance. In response I was challenged to get stressed as well. When this happens the gig goes south quick-I have done this too many times........ This time I hung with the tension and stayed relaxed. Without getting too wordy, it was just plain me being me and people became curious, trusting, and soon we were grooving. 

It is amazing how as a species we are programed to what to expect from things. Go in an italian restraunt and have a circus performing and no food? Go to an art show and see no paintings on the wall? Go to a music concert and hear a guy sing, talk, preach, cry, laugh, with no plans of where it is going, not a familiar song all night, wondering what will come out of his mouth, instruments, song lenghts, subject matter, and the underlying root of it all being a totally spontaneous occurance? I realized last night these things are unerving to most. It must touch on a primative thing with order/safety or something along the basic survival wiring. I got to talk to people about it and these were the things they told me. It was the first time I have talked about this stuff with an audience before, during, and after, a show. 

Having spent the past 10 years, 30-80 hours a week alone in my studio performing and recording my music all came to harvest last night. People have often asked me why and how can I do such a thing? I have had no answer other than it simply makes me feel good so I keep doing it. Now I see that this time alone has allowed me to develop in a way void of audience reaction. This was a great ally last night because in the past I have struggled with this stuff to no end and I realize this is why I quit playing live. Now I have come to peace and I see lots of great live gigs on the horizion! Anyway, I had a great gig and will be back next month. Getting older is a great thing. Walter 

PS: My wife was there and suggested I change my logo to simply- Spontobeat. I like it. She felt it would bring focus to what was going to happen more. So from now on I am going to be known as Spontobeat. 

--- On Thu, 3/8/12, Surly-Mac <Surly-Mac@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

From: Surly-Mac <Surly-Mac@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: RE:songs of the hellish scenes I lived in to play music over the years
To: harp-l@xxxxxxxxxx
Date: Thursday, March 8, 2012, 8:42 PM

Walter - 

I enjoyed this collection of your unique, Spontobeat songs at LEAST as much as any commercially produced stuff Iâve heard in the last year... you were channeling some FINE stuff! Thanks for posting.

Recessive-Music-Gene Productions 
New York, NY

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