I got home from the studio almost a week ago now. Sunday night – aimless, kind of empty, a quiet thrumming anxiety, a deeper satisfaction. Hollow but buzzing. We'd been living breathing and dreaming this new record for 10 days and I didn't quite know what to do with myself back in the real world. Kind of how you feel at the end of summer camp, probably?
I let myself into my dark and quiet little house and decided a cup of tea and a record spun was in order. I had a peculiar craving for Joanna Newsom. Maybe it's her voice – so distinct and clear and golden-threaded-fine that it would cut right through and remove my own from my head? Neatly and swiftly exorcise me of my own obsessive song-thoughts? Perhaps as the harp is her main instrument, there's nothing in her songs to spin me back to recall my own. And, let's be honest, I wanted to be transfixed and transported and with her shadow-world-living elfin creature sounds, she does just that.
So I put the needle down on Have One On Me and soaked it in. It's a beautifully packaged 3 LP boxed record that was a birthday present from my dear friend Amy K. I've listened to it before but this time, when the first track on the 2nd LP began, my eyes went wide and I went still and I had to listen again. And again and again. The song doesn't even clock in at 2 minutes and, to me, it's perfect. So I had to play it for myself to finish off the cleansing.
I'll write more soon about the new record. I wish I could share tracks! But that's still a long ways off. For now, please enjoy this little song and if you want to hear Joanna's wild way of making music, watch this video of her singing the same song on Letterman.
ON A GOOD DAY
Hey hey hey, the end is near!
On a good day,
you can see the end from here.
But I won't turn back, now,
though the way is clear;
I will stay for the remainder.
I saw a life, and I called it mine.
I saw it, drawn so sweet and fine,
and I had begun to fill in all the lines,
right down to what we'd name her.
Our nature does not change by will.
In the winter, 'round the ruined mill,
the creek is lying, flat and still;
it is water,
though it's frozen.
So, 'cross the years,
and miles, and through,
on a good day,
you can feel my love for you.
Will you leave me be,
so that we can stay true
to the path that you have chosen?