Some lessons learnt so far about the meaning of hospitality, the nature of talent and what it means to accept kindness:
I had one of the most memorable nights of my life on Crazy Monday at Red Monkey Lodge. It´s hard to convey how lucky I feel just to have been a part of it. In some ways I feel like the richness of the experience has not yet caught up to me.
The musicians I played with had a feel, understanding and naturalness that I could only dream of. And this made it all the more powerful to me to be accepted into their community, and to be welcomed as a part of their musical society. Writing music remains for me in some ways a crutch, a way in to interpret what I go through – whether that is something beautiful, or trying to tackle something ugly or demonic which I find in myself.
What I experienced last night was a music from an entirely different source. A music I have known, but only out of curiosity or somewhere distant on my radar. Somehow last night, this music arrived in the house of my consciousness in a way which I find somehow transformative.
I don´t know how, or in which way. I am well versed in my own limitations, but finding new influences and ways to challenge, and develop them – and to create something new – remains a source of great joy to me. That was my main feeling last night – thankfulness, humility and a sense of deep education.
I dream one day of the musical lucidity and naturalness these guys had – but even more so their open heartedness and ability to make a stranger feel welcome with them. There weren´t interested in the limitations someone has – but the heart and way something is expressed. I feel that in this way we were kindred – beyond culture or boundary – and it is here where we connected.
It makes me think how often our limitations are something that we impose on ourselves, and use them to limit the kaleidoscope of our experience. In fact the world is disinterested in our limitations, but only interested in our capacity to give heart – our willingness to connect.
As my maverick friend Mark (whom I am staying with) put it – it is about being willing to step out of your comfort zone. Ultimately our comfort zone is the place where we accept our limitations – being within it, safe. But ultimately growth happens when this space is disrupted, challenged, transcended. For now, I have the feeling that I can´t quite keep up with the depth of my experience, but I feel determined to live up to the hospitality which has, once again, been bestowed upon me. It´s too easy too feel unworthy of kindness – that is is something underserved. And I do struggle with this. It is something old in me, and complex, and not answerable to any rational thought.
But what last night taught me is that it is okay to accept this exchange – and in its acceptance little miracles can happen – such as the incremental experience of internal growth.
p.s more images in the photos section.