A few witches burning, gets a little toasty

I debated back and forth with myself about this one. Should I go or shouldn’t I? Racist party SD had a meeting in Skövde and there
was of course a counter demonstration, the “Turn your back to SD” one. Swedes all over the country go to the meetings and turn their backs in peaceful silence to party leader Jimmy Åkesson. On the one hand, they can play the victim card. The outsider/underdog card. I don’t want to give them that. On the other hand, ignoring violations of human rights has never stopped the deuche bags from seizing power. Peaceful demonstrations on the other hand have proven maybe not always super effective, but more effective.

And while they wanna be treated like any other political party, they don’t act like one. Reinfeldt would have fired all the idiots and representative tweeting idiotic, misogynistic, xenophobic things in a heart beat. While most of the representative in SD dig their own graves by being totally socially impaired and posting one bad thing after another without reprocussions. If you won’t tell them, Jimmie, the rest of us will.

And lets face it, history teaches us to act and protest before the bad guys do too much damage. I think turning your back is one of the most peaceful, yet for SD mentally devastating, ways to join the resistance.

I was tired. I tried to just throw their papers away and ignore them. I had worked for 12 hrs, exhausted. No make-up, no fixy-looky-goody, looking as sleep deprived as I was. I got off work at 19.10 and the speech started at 19.00. Yet when I heard those church bells ring, Skövde stating there’s a sign of danger, danger is here, I just went “aaah, fuck it, this is historical” and walked down there from work. And turned my back. Magazines will tell you there was lots of trouble. There wasn’t. Honestly, the “Dialouge Police” (someone mediating between police, demonstration and counter demonstration) walked around calmly. Three or four people yelled “No racists on our streets!” and got busted by the police. I talked to the Dialouge Police (that’s how I know what he does, I had to ask 😉 )  and he told me there was mostly “a lot of backs turned everywhere”. I said “well I think that’s good news” and he smiled and gave me a friendly pat.

On my way back, I saw a terribly injured pigeon. How fitting. A symbol for peace, all broken down when SD comes to town. I stopped traffic (it was in the middle of the road) and carried him/her to the park. I don’t think it would have managed a car ride home and it was better of in the park if anywhere, not in the street with cars. I patted him/her and said “just stay here, whether you make it or not, this is better.” And it relaxed in the grass. I hope it’s OK.

I’ll be honest, I felt sad for SD, I really pitied them and wanted to turn around several times. And there’s the difference. The basic empathy. Even to the people without it. You just have to decide which trumphs the other, the empathy for the poor sods of a bad, sloppy party, or the “cultural diversity” they hate. I chose the later.

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All work and no play is still play

I do like this time of year when it comes to my work. I like autumn, winter and high summer in their own rights but it’s good work in spring. Mostly because all the jobs lead me outside. I do get the occasional “why the hell are you such a workaholic?” and you’d think it’s solely to bring home the bacon, but if that was true, I wouldn’t have cut down on all of them this year to bare minimum. You know, if there’s four/five of them, I get to work a lot anyway 😉 But really, it’s the inspiration I get from all the bits and pieces, not doing one thing but living, breathing and doing my thing well in several fields. The three not-my-own-music related are all about kids. An inspiration in itself. What you get from them (apart from their incredibly warm and awesome hugs) is perspective, joy. And two of them include animals. What’s that? I love animals? Naaah 😉

One thing I did decide as I’d been working for a while, remembering my own childhood, was: “No matter what’s going on in your life. Smile when you see ’em. Kids soak up bad moods like there’s no tomorrow, and internalize it. And no matter what, you actually ARE happy to see them! Don’t ever make them feel like they are not a sight for sore eyes.” Works like a charm. Plus, in Ekehagen where they are used to their own, understandably, tired adults, a smiling face gives them a boost for the day, maybe the week even. I’ve had several kids wanting to hug and hold my hand there as “I am nice… and funny!…” I do this to the kid I’m assisting with autism as well. In the beginning kiddo looked skeptical, but now I see kiddo light up when I come to get him/her for the day. No mean feat, one of the school drivers even said: “Oooh, yeah, kiddo knows you, I can see that, look at how happy he/she looks when he/she realizes it’s you!” And lets face it. Kids are honest. So when they like you, you just know you can feel good about yourself. So even if I’m in a surly mood because of something else, I smile. And turns out, the smile I get back really does put me out of my own funk. So they help me as much as I help them!

In every field I’m working now, I get to go outside, even with my own music. My bass player and I are pretty synched, she’s 6 yrs younger than me but I’m immature and she’s mature, so we meet half way and make sure we do inspirational getaways when we get the chance. So on a daily basis I get hugs, petting cows, cats and sheep, and I get nature and all kinds of differend bird songs. It’s pretty awesome. And because I’ve cut down on hours, I am energized and not exhausted after a good work day.

There is no downside to the bringing home of the bacon. But lets face it, I’m a vegetarian, I don’t need that much of it 😉

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Lift up the receiver I’ll make you a believer

I’ve got loadsa spiritual songs, songs based on mythological references, fairy tales and communicating with the powers that be. So it’s only natural I get the question: “well what do you believe in?” Especially since I have these countless songs with an undertone of critisizing christianity.

I have to be honest with that one, most of the time it’s just symbology. I know christianity the best, as the myths, legends and references are typical for north western Europe. So it’s an easy target. I know more tolerant, open people in the Swedish church than conservative ones. The “bad” side of church is just representing the parts of society I don’t like. Intolerance. Patriarchy. Fear. More easily put in a song when using the symbology of the religion. So christians out there, much love and respect to you! Am I a christian?

On paper. I was baptized and don’t mind paying tax to preserve our lovely, historical churches. I also went through holy communion. Mostly because I was so eager in my curiosity and wanted to learn!

I think the term I use on my facebook profile is “agnostic witch”. I find it easier to relate to the wiccan ways but I was never a Gardner Girl. I believe in a higher power/energy and find the witchy ways of communicating with them sounds just about right. The different gods and saints in different religions are ways of manifesting your thoughts and calling on the right energies. I have a st cecilia hanging in my music room. Christian (!) saint of music!

Energies you say? So what about “the secret”, the “law of attraction”? Naah, slight beef right there. Some things you want you’re not meant to have and vice versa. And if you read the whole thing through and through you can’t come to any other conclusion than: “bad things are your fault”. An almost deadly way of thinking when suffering from depression. With that logic a 3-year-old manifests cancer in herself. Not bloody likely, or deserved. Not to mention the people who put fendi bags on their dream boards and then end up in credit card debt because they were “meant to have it”.

I do believe that optimism and trying to see the bright lights makes it easier for you to see them. When you have a problem, you can fix it easier because you see the solutions, be it the people or the thing that can help you, and you’re not stuck in bad things/relationships/friendships/situations etc. You can’t go thinking it’s your fault, you made it happen, think happy thoughts. Shit happens. You may have caused it, being human, outside forces may have caused it, but you’ll be alright and it’s not the end of the world. But you are an active part. Not a passive, “wishing” part. Work for it. My biggest wish is, especially for girls, who latch on to LAO more than men because they’ve been taught their whole life that working for it doesn’t help so just wish strongly, that we will all see ourselves as enough. We don’t have to make the universe want it with us, it’s enough that you want it. Take it from someone who’s had both long and short journeys with goals and wants for myself. It’s enough to want it and work for it, in time (and how much time is only your bee’s wax) you will get there. Sometimes my songs are about certain people with a mix of others, but “there’s only you inside this law, attracting friends like fools”  in “Food Chain” is a direct slam and response to this philosophy and posts friends have made from “LAO” and “The Secret” pages.

There’s a native american teaching that you really only turn to nature to find what’s missing or just to feel better. No alcohol, no food, no drugs, no new shirt. Just nature. Sounds simple enough, except mother nature, compared to in the old days, is just a ghost today. Especially in big cities like Gothenburg and Stockholm, where you can only find its artificial counterparts. That is one thing I do like about living where I live. Stressing and working 12 hrs a day, occasionally you need a refill of energy. Today I drove to the most beautiful mist early morning on my way to work (I kept my eyes on the road as I photographed) and on my way home I was joined by a fox for a bit of the way. Just walking right next to me, smiling. By the time I realized “Hey, dafuq? I’m accompanied by a real live forest animal!” the fox started walking back home, but stopped and posed for a photo. Yes, honest to god turned around and everything. That’s the pic you can see down there and I swear it was the oddest feeling, but oh yes, I felt like the energy refill was total.

So what do I believe in? People. Feelings. Energies. Nature. Listening and speaking. And most importantly, I don’t believe I know it all, one way or the other. Agnostic witch.

 

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Slasher, basher and boobs

More proof that the songs are in my head ready and done; basically put a bunch of (much harder) instruments on today for arranging and reference, then put on the actual stuff, the stuff I know, the real frame that’s gonna be on the track, and this time I wasn’t even a beat off anywhere! I do like improvement! 😀

The air puff protection broke in the middle of recordings, so I had to put stretch out my most intact (and therefore my best) pair of pantyhose. At least they’re pink! 😉

Speaking of pantyhose, no, I did not watch Eurovision. Not for the reasons you think, I actually find it quite entertaining even if I love music. But me and bassista had planned another night of thangs to do instead, a while ago. Partly that, partly because Sweden tends to do bad when I watch. And being a superstitious patriot, I had a duty to do something else. Proof; Watched every year, Sweden had the worst streaks and sometimes didn’t make it past the semi-finals. 2012 – It was warm out so I went out with friends and enjoyed sunshine instead. 2013- Watched. Bummer. 2014, didn’t watch… see what I mean? You’re welcome, Sweden! 😉

And lets talk Gothenburg for a minute, Phemme Records and Solanas Cuntz.
http://www.expressen.se/gt/band-visade-brosten–da-utrymdes-lokalen/
Feminist band taking their tops of. The arranger knew it was a feminist band, and guy bands do it all the time (I saw Timo Räsinen do it and wish I hadn’t, that boy needs to stop getting high and eat instead), so they should have been prepared, really. In Swedish pubs, law states guests have to wear shirts. So, OK, I get that they stopped them. But not the performers. I myself would like to strip down to a bra occasionally (I think totes nekked boobs would be pretty painful if I want to move around at all and not sit still) because it gets hot as you perform, just like PJ Harvey. But I’m careful. Harvey has the androgynous look down, wafer thin, not much boobs. I… have boobs. So… where’s the line? When is it OK? Should we measure ourselves before we take it off? When does it go from “male” and “OK” to “female” and “Obscene”? Just a food for thought. Couldn’t be more proud though. I know awesome Lottie who plays the guitar, one of my bass players best friends, and she’s handling it beautifully. Says she’s “proud ” and enjoying her “five minutes of B-fame”. Love that girl 😉

 

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My best pair…

Working super hard at rehearsals

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Pass po(rt)

Yeah, so here’s the mugshot… Got it the other day, I’ll be living with this for 5 yrs now every time I go abroad 😉

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Apropou abroad, travelling, other countries, our country. I’ve been boiling as the last few months have shown the pathetic dying coughs of racist party SD. So this one is in Swedish;

Såg en insändare häromdan i GP från två Sverigedemokrater som försökte med några av partiets sista dödsryckningar inför valet sätta på sig offerkoftan igen. “Våldsvänstern sprider elak propaganda” “Våldsvänstern förstör demokratin” “Saker postas på facebook som ger dåligt intryck av oss och vi kan inget göra.” För det första… våldsvänstern? Jag är inget fan av högerblocket, men jag säger inte emot de gånger jag tycker de har rätt bara för att. Och Reinfeldt kan nog inte visa tydligare att han tycker det är obehagligt att vistas i samma rum som Åkesson. För det andra… våldsvänstern?… Menar ni de Jönköpingsbor som vände ryggen åt er och ringde i kyrkklockan? Kan tänka mig våldsammare saker. Menar ni kvinnan som tårtade Åkesson? Kan tänka mig våldsammare saker där också, våldshöger som anfaller feminister 8:e mars till exempel. För det tredje… Propaganda? De postar era tweets. Som ni lagt upp. Finns inte så mycket att över- eller undertolka, ni har ju själva lagt upp det offentligt. Avpixlat och aftonbladet? Det är inte ovanligt att publicera listor på sponsorer för olika politiska sighter. Det gör man överallt. Bara det att socialdemokraterna inte är rädda för att förknippas med socialdemokratiska sighter, moderater är inte rädda för att förknippas med sighter och liknande de sponsrar. Står du för ditt parti kan du inte direkt kalla det propaganda när någon gör vad som görs för precis alla andra partier. SD vill bli behandlade som andra partier men ändå inte?

Sedan kommer en lång lista av vänner som postar den här artikeln;
http://www.expressen.se/kvallsposten/konditori-kritiseras-for-rasistiska-bakverk/

Med; “snacka om att göra en höna av en fjäder” “snart får vi väl inte säga mörk choklad längre” “Så idiotiskt”. Gemensamt för dessa vänner? Alla vita män i 25-30-årsåldern. Med andra ord inte alls den målgrupp som kan bli sårade och ta illa upp av kakorna. Vet ni hur vi rör oss framåt, bort från 20-talet då kvinnor inte fick rösta, bort från 50-talet när man pratade om “negrer som luktar så illa” och bort från 70-talet när homosexualitet fortfarande klassades som en sjukdom? Vi lyssnar på de som blir sårade. Vi må bara ha sett kakor i choklad innan (jag såg pickaninny-kakor ganska direkt med dreadlocksen. Smileys? Varför inte strössel hela vägen runt och mindre mänskliga ögon, då liksom, det är ju bara kakor och ändrar inte smaken). Men det är när vi börjar försvara oss som rasismen får fortleva. “Det är DU som är rasist som ser det här!” Försvarar oss istället för att på riktigt börja fundera och se vad som kan vara fel. Stort som smått. Det är här hindret med feminism kommer fram också. “Men nu har det väl spårat ur, nu är det DU som tänker misogynt när du ser det här!” och min personliga favorit: “Kan ni inte fokusera på viktigare frågor, ni skrämmer ju liksom bort oss!”. Som ordföranden för afrosvenskarnas riksförbund sa: “Det är inte vår uppgift att få dem att se, det är vår uppgift att skydda oss från rasismen”. Och de små sakerna i den förtryckande strukturen tillåter de stora sakerna. Så både de små och stora sakerna är viktiga. Och det finns inget som hindrar mig från att fokusera på dem alla. Jag behöver ingen lektion i vad jag ska ta illa upp av och inte, det är liksom inte något man kontrollerar. Och jag har ingen rätt att säga emot en rasifierad människa när de tar illa upp av något de upplever som utanförskap, rasism, fel, heller. Det är de som bestämmer. Punkt. Exclamation point. Till syvende och sist bestämmer inte jag som vit kvinna vad som är rasistiskt, och mannen bestämmer inte vad som är misogynt. “Men nu får det vara nog, nu blir vi förtryckta!!” Vet ni vad? När vi inte får säga mörk choklad längre, när männen äter ur hundskålar och kryper i skinntangas, då har något gått galet. Har inte hänt än. Kommer antagligen inte att hända. Vad är ni så rädda för? Att bli empatiska, tänkande, kännande människor?Att ni ska ha tänkt/gjort fel? Det får man göra, bara man gör om och gör rätt sen!

Visst, någon postade en bild på det ordföranden hade sagt i artikeln (som jag mycket väl kan läsa och hade läst flera gånger men det är ju alltid bra att få lite hjälp, kvinnor har ju bara tillåtits vara läskunniga i något hundratal år så vi ligger lite efter) och “den svenska vitheten” låter inte så trevligt. Men det är ett namn på den förtryckande strukturen, inte individen, precis som feminismen dissar patriarkatet. Och ärligt, efter hundratals år av förtryck känner man kanske inte att man behöver vara diplomatisk och trevlig varenda jäkla gång mot sin förtryckare. Det är inte “DU som är rasist/misogyn”. Det är underdogen som sparkar uppåt. Förståeligt, om än otrevligt.

Sedan håller jag fullständigt med om att det har blivit en höna av en fjäder. Inte pga AFR, utan pga att expressen och kvällsposten gjort (klart vinklade) artiklar om det. Och att ni har spridit och delat vidare. Samma gäller alla ggr AFR har dykt upp i artiklar som delats på samma sätt. Istället för att bara lyssna, sätta lite strössel runtom kakorna eller vad som helst. Har någon som postat handlat på det konditoriet ens? Vem gör en höna av en liten konditori-fjäder egentligen? De förtryckta KAN inte tugga sin politik åt er genom att konstant försvara varför de blir ledsna. Det är er uppgift att tugga. Feminism, anti-rasism, HBTQ-kulturen. Vill ni inte så vill ni inte, men då får ni tåla att ni blir kallade misogyna/rasister/homofober. För ni har helt enkelt inte lyssnat. Själv tror jag nog jag har mycket kvar att lära, vad gäller allt i kyriarkin.

 

 

Die die, darling

Been able to sit down at work with album stuff finally, there’s been a lot to put together so I’ve had to deal with loads of logistics, e-mails and phone calls. But when I do sit down I can’t really stop, so this sleep thing people do has felt kinda unnecessary 😉 Lucky I have mostly evening jobs so there are some late mornings, but it does get kinda crazy when I need to get up at 6 a.m. Couldn’t have done this if spring wasn’t providing light and energy.

The reason I want to do everything over the course of some tough 18 hr shifts is again, the feel I’ve been talking about. The studio feel and letting the songs guide you. I was gonna have that, but due to some epic craziness/weirdness we only have a few proper big studio days in June to record vocals, drums, bass and the orchestral parts. So I’m like “OK, make due”, borrow the instruments I don’t have, and am playing, when able to and can get to a good recording place, so I had to put down melodica before celesta for example. The melodica was just an extra touch, the celesta more the main event, melodica is not my 1st instrument either, so I was a bit worried. Don’t I need the feel? Don’t I need the celesta first? I can add extras, but even the super proffessional savants need the feel to get some good takes.

Turns out I didn’t have to worry. Every part has been playing for so long in my head that it was almost impossible not to play them right, and WITH feel! I added celesta yesterday and turns out, there was only this one place where I was like one beat off, but since I recorded to clicks I could fix it.

There was another instrument I was adding on to the song that just made it to messy when I got hold of the real, more bass-y thing. So I might remove it. Kill your darlings. True to any art form, even if the darling was SUPER COOL!

Anyways, I’ll be more secretive about the other instruments but I was just impressed here that I could actually do this “hear it in my head, add on to empty space” thing, so I had to share it with you! 🙂 Could NOT have done that for the first two albums. I know the key to improvement in music and any art is “just keep doing it, try things, don’t overthink it, and you’ll get better” but it’s nice to know it actually works! 🙂

Anyway, since I mostly record in my underwear except for Animalic recorded mid winter, I can’t really treat you to pics from recording the celesta, but I’ll treat you to some pics I took with the hybrid at the nature preserve! 🙂

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Hope- the love of spring

Skara has a great tradition of music and especially choirs and musical performance, something you simply must see at least once and if so, spring, April 30th, Beltane and Valborg. MV, Ockto Pelle (as I call them, I think it’s Octo Puelle ;)) and Skara choir all have performances followed by speeches. They may not seem important but if you consider it’s the arch bishop and bishop of the oldest church in Sweden, and filmed and televized, you might grasp that it’s sort of the Swedish church coming out of hibernation.

This year Åke Bonnier held a speech to spring. Looking at the programme I was almost bored thinking: “oh, here we go”, but he proceeded to hold a very strong speech against racism, sexism, fear and xenophobia in general. And very strongly. He didn’t even hide who he was making the speech against. I cheered loudly, I can tell you that. In the past years Sweden has seen xenophobic party Sweden Democrats and racism grow stronger, only to grow weaker this election year. And I was almost in tears as he held his speech, so in a bloody merry mood as we watched the night’s bonfire, I can tell you that. He even used the new Swedish word “hen” (a pronoun independent of gender, differing from “hon” och “han” and raising snickers in the English Speaking audience) stating “we are all free to identify ourselves as we want to, unity is in diversity”.

Lets hope the love of spring is strong, just like Åke Bonnier said, spring is diversity, change, and unity and love in differences. Blessed be! 🙂

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