Second week of the year, and so much going on. Last night (1/10/16) at the Sahara we had a special extra show and the slam to select a poet to represent Worcester at the Women of the World Poetry Slam (WoWPS) and it was an amazing show. The talent that showed up to compete was inspiring. Most of the poets I knew or had heard of before, but there were a few new ones who blew my socks off. The winner was one of those “new” (to me) women, and she was a powerful, talented performer with a strong voice (both literally and figuratively). Worcester can be proud of their representative and I know she’ll do well.
It’s funny – I was just talking to the other half the other day about how I used to write poetry but I never felt I was good enough at it to continue. Sometimes you just know you’re not getting where you need to go – in my case, poetry is too compact and requires way too much attention (and strong editing) to suit my writing skills. As you might guess from even these blog posts, I’m not good at doing “short and strong” poetry. Ironic, because that would probably describe me as a person. On the other hand, my musical tastes bear out my strengths – I like long sets to elaborate on my ideas and themes, and have been waiting for a long time to jump back into something that’s a long-form, DJ-centric event. I’ve been doing musical work for poetry pretty much exclusively for the last 9 years or so, and that’s just crazy to me.
But last night, I had a discussion, and passed a card. I’m going to go out this weekend and check out something that may become a new monthly home for me. I’ve missed the immediate, visceral feedback of people dancing to my sets. With the 7 Hills Slam gig, I’ve had more and more people come up to me and tell me they enjoy my music. It’s always a nice surprise, even after all these years of being a DJ. Then there are my super fans, who give me all those reactions to the strange things I play. Angel and Rushelle, and my dear friend Jenith – giving me the love and bopping along when I get it just right. I missed that. Going to see if I can get that kind of feedback more often.
I know that part of my guiding philosophy is to keep things interesting. Keep changing things up (in the context of a coherent framework) and add in as much diversity as possible. This goes back to the time when I was going out to dance clubs every weekend, all weekend long. The DJs then were playing everything, dance music was blowing up in all directions, and the influences were so eclectic. You always knew that things would change direction again and again, and anything was possible – from old school rave music to acid house, from Nine Inch Nails to Depeche Mode to the Red Hot Chili Peppers. I miss those days, but they definitely played a part in making me the musical misfit that I am. My collection is diverse, but it mostly spans a couple of decades with an emphasis on certain periods when I was the most active. I’m still adding, but as I get older, I realize that there is so much music out there, and so much more being produced all the time. It’s easier than ever for someone to create music and put it out to the world. It’s also easier to find the music you feel best expresses your voice and curate that music for others to take them on your journey. I’ve never been big on having the “latest and greatest” of everything, but I have always known when I hear that song that makes me go WANT NOW and I am constantly reminded how that voice is spot on even years later. Of course, I’m not above pimping when a friend puts out something amazing, so that happens, as well. I think I’ll get to see pretty soon what that will be like with new people in a new setting. Check back soon and I’ll say more as things develop!
Stay warm, enjoy your new year, and play a David Bowie song for you and for me.
Grandma Funk (DJ Muse)