~ You may have heard this already if you follow Martin A on Instagram:
'The River' was written by KT Tunstall and Martin Terefe, and previously recorded/released by Martin Halla on his 2013 album 'Winter Days'. I've had to give this version some time to grow, only because I've had five years with Martin's version, but it's definitely happening.
~ Looks like the Apparatjik performance was a success in Szczecin, Poland a couple of weeks ago. There are some great pictures here. Also not sure if this link will work, but if it does, you will surely enjoy this video from before the event.
~ The prospect of more a-ha concerts is pretty awesome too! No real details yet, just a teaser for now here
~ Even better prospect, in my very biased opinion? New music from Magne on the horizon somewhere! Yes, we're all used to waiting, but it's nice to know the wait will be over soonish :-)
~ Here is a short video from Magne's 'Icon' exhibition opening yesterday in Oslo.
~ I heard the song 'You Say' by Lauren Daigle on the radio the other day and thought it thematically would be the perfect companion to 'More Than Good Enough':
I didn't realize at first that it's a religious song, but still the emotions behind it pair well with the intent of MTGE:
"I keep fighting voices in my mind that say I’m not enough
Every single lie that tells me I will never measure up"
The reassurance and kindness in MTGE are a response to exactly these emotions.
"The only thing that matters now is everything You think of me"
Sometimes all you need is to have that one person who has faith in you, who knows what you are capable of, understands what is holding you back and builds you up so you can face anything. Anyway I think these two songs present an interesting pairing of themes.
~ There is an interesting thread on Twitter about joy, written by the inspiring Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg. She says that people are often uncomfortable with feelings of joy. "Feeling happy makes us vulnerable in a way that feeling terrible doesn’t." We need to protect joy, we fear the loss of it. People know what to do with anger and sadness and frustration, we are conditioned to expect those feelings and even sometimes encouraged to amplify them; often we share our challenges with others more than we share joys. She says that joy is "hard and threatening for many of us", and continues to say that joy is the unknown, it requires us to be present in the moment and accepting it. For me this is a key post in the thread.
In short, we have a choice in how we respond to moments of joy. We can choose to embrace them, hold them close to us or reflect them outwards to others.
I would expand on this thread in a different direction and say that not only should we embrace our own joys, but we should be especially kind and gentle with other people's joys, simply because they are closest to their hearts. You can tell a lot about a relationship by the way each one treats the other person's joys - do they handle them with care, strive to protect them, look for ways to activate them, or do they ignore or minimize or even actively prevent them?
So many people tend to break down what brings other people joy and happiness, they take satisfaction in tempering people's dearest hopes with 'realism' and 'practicality', and even seem to actively begrudge the simplest pleasures of others. I can't tell you the number of times I have tried to share something that made me happy with someone, only to have them belittle it or question it or try to make me feel frivolous or strange for finding joy in that (to them) inconsequential thing. The result is that I keep those things to myself in order to protect them. Why do people do this to one another?
...and how is this connected to this blog? :-)
As a "fan" there are many things that bring me joy in this context that a lot of people don't understand. They don't get why I'd travel across the world for a concert, or why certain lyrics always make my heart skip with happiness, or how I get a little thrill every time I download a new song from my favorite band. Most of the time I don't talk about this stuff, because I don't want people to question and look doubtful and even scorn something that makes me happy, so that's why this blog is important to me - it's a place I can share these things and know that you (whoever you are :-)) probably understand and maybe feel the same way about some of these things.
Long story short, inspired by the Rabbi and other things recently, I've decided to more actively embrace life's joys and to share more of them with people in the hope that they will feel some joy as well :-) I am also trying to be more in tune with other people's joys, listen and learn from them, and make sure friends know they are safe sharing with me.
~ I've said before that I long for a 'happy' song from Magne, and I've also said that he somehow has a way of writing what my heart needs to hear, so my hope for his next album is that there is joy in it. It would not be obvious, that's not his style, but I hope he will somehow render in song those 'glowing moments' he spoke about last year.