Saturday, 26 January 2008


I always mean to write in here about the times when I feel rubbish and uncreative. But when I feel like that I tend not to feel like writing. I tend not to feel like doing anything, really, but sleeping and waiting until I feel better. When I feel uncreative I usually feel depressed, and vice versa.

Recently I have been feeling pretty uncreative a lot of the time - since Monday at least, and I think probably a lot longer. I have made no progress on any Bumblebees songs, and I have completed abandoned the Rescue Aid Society EP I was working on. I want to start that again because I never get tired with the
idea of putting out music. I just get frustrated with trying to make it. The Bumblebees stuff is quite important, cos we have a gig in a month and we really want new songs. Some of the current ones are just embarrassing. But the only ideas I have are reworkings of old ideas, and I can't even finish them. I feel like I am not creative at all.

Sometimes I think that I am just an assortment of other peoples' personalities, and that I don't have the potential to think up anything new at all. Most of the songs I write just sound like whatever I've been listening to lately. I think some people see the world in a unique way, and I don't think I am one of those people. (Here is the time to say that THE DOORS OF PERCEPTION is a really fantastic book that made me think about lots of things.)

Making music is something, maybe the only thing, that I can get absolutely lost in. I know I have a passion for music. I feel like one of those desperate failures on X-Factor who simply won't believe that they are not god's gift to pop music. Do you think they know, in the back of their minds, that in this instance Simon Cowell is probably in a better position to judge? I feel like if I were on a reality show, families would be shouting "GIVE UP!" in unison at their screens.

I'm sure not all musicians have a consistently inspired worldview. I'm sure some are just grafters; the musical equivalent of, say, Kevin Kilbane. People who wrote really good (and possibly very distinctive) songs by emulating songs they liked. Super Furry Animals or something. But Super Furry Animals never made me want to explode, and they never made me want to cry. Making a career out of decent power-pop is definitely better than filling envelopes, but I don't think I would ever be happy with myself.

I'll probably feel better soon, I usually do.


Bonjela said...

Hello Ellis.
I'm sorry I only just read this post. Shamefully I'd not checked up to see if you'd started writing again and I see that you did so before our croft gig.

I'm sad to see you're hoping to move away for uni. I hope you feel better now. Your concerns reminded me of the Jeffrey Lewis song about Will Oldham. I'm sure you know it yeah? you almost paraphrase this bit:

'Steamboat Willie Bonnie Prince of all this shit, you're like the king of a certain genre
But even you must want to quit like if you hear a record by Bob Dylan or Neil Young or whatever
You must start thinkin' "People like me, but i won't be that good ever"
And I'm sure the thing is probably Dylan himself too stayed up some nights
Wishing he was as good as Ginsberg or Camus
And he was like "Dude, I'm such a faker, I'm just a clown who entertains
and these fools who pay for my crap, they just have pathetic punny brains
and Camus probably wished he was Milton too or whatever, you know what i'm sayin'?!"'

You reminded me of the times when I can't think of any new ideas for the life of me, and you start thinking of re-doing old things. But they're worth it surely for when you've got hundreds of ideas streaming out your head. Like when you start a song and it starts writing itself. I'm sure you get that.

I found Cool Science really inspirational. The 'If there's a god..' bit is perfect and really moving. It's made me really want to write my definitive atheist statement. Our song 'Rubicon to Mango' is about religion but it hasn't got any of the punch that your lyrics do. It's opening gambit is too esoteric and wordy, I'm not quoting it, you should get the lyrics from Bert. I had shivers down my spine during Cool Science. I fucking love it.

I was exhilarated by parts of your performance. Your first song was a joy, as were the myspace ones and I really liked a couple near the end. The sound didn't help at times and as you said some of the songs might be weaker. but I've only heard them once. All in all it was an elegant triumph.

p.s. Rubber Ring was always one of my favourites. Louder Than Bombs was the first Smiths I got.
p.p.s. Kevin Kilbane would make it onto my least favourite players 1st eleven. Or maybe not. Perhaps Matt Etherington or Stan Lazaridis would take the left wing slot. I can't stand those slow wingers.

rosalind said...

you should listen to your latest ras song. silly beehead. i've been trying to call you but your phonebox isn't working. love, rozathon