Wow, it’s 1AM. I always delight to write in my blog at very late and inappropriate hours of the night. But I don’t really have class tomorrow, so I think I’ll be okay.

I enjoy blogging. Or rather, I think I enjoy solidifying my thoughts. I have millions of thoughts always running through my mind, especially lately right before I’m trying to fall asleep, and blogging it is like picking out that one secure and true golden thread amidst the others. And once I’ve done that, I can quiet the other voices and be at peace.

And now that I think about it, the process of music making can quite be like that. There’s a million factors that go into writing a song: your emotions for that day, how many hours of sleep you’ve gotten, how much light is out or how dark it is, scents, moods, how passionate or frustrated you are while trying to write. These many factors can cause little alterations in what you’re trying to create. It’s like a choose-your-own adventure book, but it’s kind of hard and frustrating to always keep going back to your previous choices to see what could have been.

Music Making

I’ve been music making lately, and I become very delighted when I finish a song. However, as I’ve been telling kind people around me who inquire, the only phrase that comes to mind is this: “Ee guh ah ni yah.” Translation from Korean to English: This isn’t it.

That’s the only way I can describe most of my songs. I’m trying to communicate something, some kind of feeling or thought or strong belief, but I don’t feel like the music cuts through. David Crowder once said that writing a song is like putting your ear against a wall and trying to hear a muffled melody. I can completely understand– what I have is a form of what I want, but it’s just not quite clear.

Regardless, I’m not sure if I’ll have the time. I’ll be having all day classes Monday and Wednesday, clinical on Tuesday, leading Bible Study either Wednesday or Thursday, large group Friday, chapel on Sunday, and I’m trying to make a few extra bucks on top of it all. At least I don’t have a boyfriend anymore! Hardy har har! Just kidding.. sobity sob sob.

Anyway, yeah, so one of my goals is to finally find “it” in my music, and record something beautiful and inspiring and challenging and sensational for other people to listen to. And it’s quite a task. But quality is never easily earned, rather it is painfully toiled for. I will toil, my peoples, I will toil greatly. I will struggle with this artist soul of mine until something I feel is worthy finds itself formed on my lips, beckoned by the dance of my fingers and guitar strings.

I played at a concert recently. I arrived by 4:30 and found myself in the company of one other band (a threesome of lanky, awkward adolescent kids) and their mothers who were super cool. I was starting to freak out because I kind of expected the main performing band to be there, ordering people around, setting stuff up. They didn’t come until 5:30, and the show was starting at 6.

So I was pretty nervous when I was playing. I was the second act, the only female, and the only solo artist. I mean, I want to stand out, but in a good way, not in a “what’s-she-doing-here” kind of way. And when I first blinked adjustingly to the stage lights to look at the people, I felt a bit frozen. And quite small.

But then something changed in me after the second song. I think I decided just to have fun, and then it did become fun. I cracked some corny jokes and people actually laughed because they were so dumb. And I felt bold and said things like “Thank you for helping the children!” and sang despite my voice recovering from the week long cold. I felt like I was at a social gathering where the entire audience was my friend, but I didn’t have to listen to them talk and could talk all I wanted about whatever I wanted. It was kind of nice. Teehee. Thanks to everyone who came out– especially the Charlottesville people. I was so touched. And Estin, I was so relieved to hear your distinct laughter in the crowd. Made me feel at home.

A musician I’ve been getting into is one such Bjork. Whenever I tell people this, they give me strange looks and say, “Do you like to dress up like a swan too?” I respect Bjork greatly– not only is her music atypical and refreshing, but it’s almost legendary. She sings her song, and she sounds like a desperate heroine fighting against all odds, or you just get the feeling that something great and larger-than-life is about to happen. Not only that, but she’s also from Iceland, so she chooses her words very carefully when she sings. She sings in such a manner that the word sounds new, and brings much imagery to mind. And her subject matter is exquisite– they’re complicated and meaningful.

Take one such song called WANDERLUST:

“Wanderlust! relentlessly craving
Wanderlust! peel off the layers
Until we get to the core

Did I imagine it would be like this?
Was it something like this I wished for?
Or will I want more?”

I feel this sense of understanding that you are defined by the people you’re around. I think this song captures that when you move around a lot, you sort of lose definitives in terms of your identity. Or if you’re not grounded somewhere, you’re not really sure who you are. I can imagine that if I did not have my family or GCF or ICF, I would have trouble collecting a firm grip on who I am. Granted, no matter what, I have my secure identity in God’s love, in Christ, but if I didn’t, I can imagine it would be very troublesome. And it’s kind of like– the more you travel, the more desperate you are to find an identity, the more you search, and ironically, the more you are lost. Lovely song.

Another song, called INNOCENCE, describes the phenomena of fear, and this song relates more to the feeling I had when I performed at the concert:

“I once had no fears
None at all
And then when
I had some

To my surprise
I grew to like both
Scared or brave
Without them

The thrill of fear
Thought I’d never admit it
The thrill of fear
Now greatly enjoyed with courage

Fear is a powerful drug
Overcome it and
You think that you can do
Should I
Save myself
For later
Or generously give?

Fear of
Is draining

It locks up your chest
Shuts down the heart
And stingy
Let’s open up : share!”

What a great song! The beat is so catchy, but the lyrics also describe that almost addiction to fear– to face what you’re afraid of squarely and find that you didn’t really have to be afraid in the first place. Or the fear makes it worthwhile to encounter. Hmm.

Alright readers, time for me to kick myself to bed. But in the meantime, I’ll be writing some more music and hopefully get to record some good stuff sometime soon.