photos by @jazmynproduces
My year started off with me spending my only week off in bed, followed by needing to take another week off, to spend it in bed.
The thing they don’t speak on much with having a chronic illness is that it affects your immune system, your body can be a little weaker having the ability to catch anything if you’re not super careful 24/7 x365. My body when stressed plus my slightly weaker immune system = a bit of a hot spot.
I was a little worried, It was coming up to the crunch of leaving for Tamworth and I was still a little off, but it’s amazing the power of adrenaline and a can-do attitude. I’ve never cancelled anything unless I have been made to. I remember showing up to the Golden Guitar Award announcements 3 days after a surgery… finest moment? Probably not… But unless I was physically on the operating table, I was going. I guess no matter what phase in my life I’ve been at, I have always had drive in my adult years. Sometimes this drive is to my detriment and sometimes it has come out in brash and very messy ways, but it’s the way I was raised. Sink or swim, do the thing to get to where you want to go. This isn’t really a flex, in fact I wish I could turn my brain off sometimes. I wish I had the ability to sit still and let the room be quiet, it’s an art form that I’ll continue to try to learn, my forever lesson.
Coming back into music, the stakes had never felt higher for a show. First gig back, hadn’t seen a lot of people in nearly 3 years, hadn’t played with the band in 2 and I felt like I was coming back as a new human because let’s be honest, is anyone really the same after the last two/three years?
A blip in time In the grand scheme but quite an important moment for us.
Needless to say, we went, we did the show and as terrified as I was, it was worth every single minute. It was the release of the last 2 years. It was like a baptism by energy, the lyrics that I have written screamed at me, people I have admired for years, watching. It was warm and real and rough and ready. It was like the stars, the moon, the sun and lightning, got together and danced simultaneously so we could witness it, all together. Admittedly, It was the gratification my ego yearned for and the whirlwind my anxiety needed to remember we can handle it all. Oh how I’ve missed people telling me when I talk I sound like a bogan and when I sing I sound like a different person. I MEAN IT.
To say I’m grateful for the opportunity to be back at it is an understatement. VERY cliche and honestly something I used to say because I felt like it was the right thing to say. But I mean it with every fibre of my being now. I didn’t know what my life would look like post covid. Hell, I still don’t. I didn’t know if I could even write a song again. Then I did, then I wrote 20. Then I decided okay, it’s time.
Rebirth has been a constant theme for me. I believe that with each chance to come forward as a revolutionised version of ourselves we should take it but the older I get, the less it feels like a rebirth and more like a coming home. It feels like I move closer to being at peace with who I am in my own meat suit and just happy to be here, existing in this way. I have nothing to prove to anyone but myself, and all to gain.
Life is filled with the constant challenge and conquer. It’s not like the movies where there’s a big monumental challenge and from then on it’s gravy. I think that’s what the last few years has taught me most. Don’t wait for the breath, you have to create it or you’ll never catch it. There’s always a new stake or level to unlock and we are forever the students, this year I’m really embracing this.
As I reflect on this show, it feels like it will forever hold a place in my heart. The blending of worlds. The new one I have built for myself over the last few years and the old parts of me who love to write, sing and bruise my knees on a stage. There’s comfort in knowing that I AM COMFORTABLE in being all of myself.
I hope to share more.
To be authentic and true without a catch, without an air of click bait or to sway you. I don’t want to have an agenda because they are tiring.
In the world of music it’s easy to be jaded, especially when you are told how hard it is. from the get go But I’ve spent a lot of time shifting to, man, what an opportunity this is.
Artists. We show up because we genuinely want to be here doing this, whatever it takes. The sacrifices we all make in the name of creation.
I want you to see yourself in the story, always. Whether it be this post or my lyrics. I want to speak with conviction without feeling the need to over explain or fearing I might be taken the wrong way. It’s so tiring. Especially because I know I’m not the only one. Words can be the connecting factor that bring people closer to humanity and the Tamworth show proved that to me too. We’ve let the phone and computer screen come between us for a long time, its time to begin bringing the human element back to life.
January has felt very much like one giant nod from the universe to say, yes, this is the way, you need to continue. It’s saying the last two years of your life needed to happen for you in the way they did, to bring you to this moment.
We are recording a record next month. Yep, announcement, we are recording a record and I’m really excited to be creating again in this way. Stay tuned.
More to come on a bunch of stuff but for now, here’s some things that have made an impact on me in January, maybe they might help you too.
If you read this whole thing, well done and TELL ME.
Books: Atomic Habits by James Clear, Time of My Life by Myf Warhurst.
Podcast: Evolve with Emily, Reborn Ashley Horner
TV show: Parks and Recreation (I have way more in common with Leslie Knope than I’d like to admit)
Exercise: Light resistance training 3-4 times a week, taking it easy.
Drink: Chi drinks, black coffee