Starting All Over

Somebody once said to me “your life is literally like a musical. You have a song for every moment and you never stop singing!” I don’t know if this was meant to be a mickey take or not but I’ve always seen it as a positive. Music and singing are my breathing in and out.

The sad thing is though, I’ve not been singing much in the last two years. There are a number of reasons for this. The band I was in naturally drifted apart as people got busy with other projects or giving birth – well, that was just me! We were really a sort of gig band in the sense that we got together to rehearse if we found ourselves with a gig rather than rehearse to find gigs if that makes sense. It was a project we all did for love and for fun!

I’ve also not felt much like singing the way I used to. I couldn’t drive anywhere without belting out a song and singing in the shower was as natural as shampooing! But without noticing, I stopped doing it. It wasn’t one day recently that I realised. The mood suddenly took me and I began belting out “Someone Else’s Story” from Chess. When I emerged my husband looked like I’d just bought him a new Ferrari and exclaimed “that’s the first time I’ve heard you sing for ages!”

Recently I’ve braved venturing in to a new music project but my confidence isn’t where it was. Singing has always come so naturally to me but suddenly it feels kind of alien. It’s not been helped by having a miniature snot factory living with us, sharing colds and coughs gathered from every soft play and toddler group going! And I seem to be apologising an awful lot to my new music partner, possibly unnecessarily.

This week I’ve been thinking an awful lot about music. I picked up my guitar today for the first time in a long while and learned a new chord – Am7 apparently – but don’t worry, that still only makes about 5 or 6 that I can play vaguely competently. But mostly I’ve been thinking about songs that have got me through the rough times over the last couple of years.

It wont surprise anyone to learn that I’ve listened to an extraordinary amount of James Taylor – but especially the song “You and I Again”. I heard this for the first time live during his UK tour just after Munch was born. It immediately hit me and it was the first live music I’d seen for a long while. I went to see him with my Dad and it was a moment of real happiness that was palpable. I love the arrangement, the words, the journey the music takes and of course that forever youthful, soothing voice of his.

Another song which has been an almost daily “listen” is the Dixie Chicks version of “Landslide”. A few months ago, myself and my long term singing partner Jen got together with a couple of super talented musicians we’d previously worked with to do a couple of gigs. Jen is also my BFF (is that what the kids are calling it now?) and we sang this song together. The feeling of being back singing live, with such a poignant song and with one of the few people in this world that really gets me…well, that was a feeling that needs to be bottled.

I know there are a few more songs that have been important over my PND journey (ick…does that sound horribly cheesy?!) but recalling things hasn’t been my strong point recently! Also, if I noted down every single song that got me through something tough I would break the internet!

However, there is one more song that has given me something very important and has been the song I have come back to again and again. I can remember one occasion I was in such a bad place that I took myself out for a drive, parked in a local beauty spot, looking out to sea and I just sobbed…for something near an hour. I felt like I couldn’t call anyone. I thought they’d be super bored of hearing me bang on about the same old stuff. I thought the tears wouldn’t actually stop. Then my iPod gifted me Starting All Over by a beautiful duo called While and Matthews. I listened once, then repeated it over a few times. And suddenly I wasn’t crying anymore.

And the reason for that and my reason for sharing this story is because of the simple yet perfect lyrics of the song, which I’m going to share with you. Even if you’re not really a “music person” but you’re going through the cloud of PND, I hope that you can read these lyrics and that they can help you the way they helped me. I have to thank Chris While and Julie Matthews for giving their permission to share (I say “permission”…it was more a blessing. They’re very lovely people. And incidentally me and Jen are hugely influenced by them and kind of want to be them!). So here they are…

Starting all over again – Matthews & While

From the album ‘Piecework’ While and Matthews
It’s a very long road that’s in front of you
When you’re starting all over again
You say there’s no way out and there’s no way through
When you’re starting all over again
And it’s pulling inside of you, dimming the light in you
Turning your thoughts to yesterday
Your spirit is sinking low, thoughts have no place to go
The tunnel is closing in around you

Chorus
And it’s so hard starting all over, starting all over again
But the heart finds a way to recover
When you’re starting all over again

There’s a field of gold under distant skies
Starting all over again
You won’t see it till you clear your eyes
Starting all over again
Your heart feels as black as night, it will till the time is right
Just for the moment you’re holding on
Then turning each corner, your heart will grow warmer
And finding your feet you’ll be moving forward

Chorus

Your heart feels as black as night, it will till the time is right
Just for the moment you’re holding on
Then turning each corner, your heart will grow warmer
And finding your feet you’ll be moving forward

Chorus

 

 

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