Relaxed Machinery

a community supporting ambient music, art, poetry, photography, games and more

[ editors note:  originally posted June 11, 2011 ]

not many of the people i know actually have any idea about what i do musically, at all. they may know that i dabble in a bit of sound engineering, but few know that i also dabble with music, now and again. i tend to keep it, and myself, quiet on the subject, as i've found in the past that there's little to be gained from even "trying" to explain it (and even I have trouble myself trying to explain it sometimes). i don't really mix with other musicians, or creatives (well, maybe one or two, now and again), because there are none where i live, so i'm pretty much in isolation with it and all... i digress.. one of my friends, however, does know what i do - even if they don't fully "get" most of my stuff - they do get my quieter pieces....

 

in 2009 i was asked to do a bespoke piece for another friend of mine's daughter, who was having a home water birth (i've mentioned this on here before), and in november of last year i found it had been used again for the birth of her second child, another baby girl. a couple of days after the birth, the new mum rang me to thank me. it was very emotional, to know that these things are possible, and sometimes, what we do, can make a difference. even if our own lives are in the darkness/wilderness (or, of course, if we are in a happy place), we cannot control what goes on on the "outside", or legislate for it - so...

 

about 3 weeks ago, 2 friends of mine got in contact with me, who knew that i'd done a water birthing piece for my other friend, to tell me that they were fostering a newborn baby girl, who was only 3 weeks old (at that time). the thing was, they said, was that the baby had been born to a mother who was an ex heroin addict, who'd been on a methadone programme, and the upshot of that was that the poor little girl had been born addicted to methadone. "can you do anything, pete, that might help her?" they asked... i will admit to being way out of my comfort zone - this is an area i've never really looked at before - individual sleep problems, yes,- but this was difficult, as it could have really backfired, and indeed could have made things worse. after a long conversation about the history, and the problems the little girl was experiencing i decided to try something out, from an idea that dropped into my head whilst talking to them, just to see. with no idea if it would "work", or not..

 

i created a short piece, only some 25 mins long, as i was conscious of not wanting to "overload" anything - took the cd down to my friends house, and was introduced to the baby. the foster parents explained some more about the issues she was having to deal with, which were horrendous, and heartbreaking.  they put the little mite into her moses basket, put on the cd, very quietly, and she slept. until it finished, upon which she started to cry, so they put it on again. and she went back to sleep. when it finished again, she started to cry again.. i was astonished. they had it on loop all day, apparently, and said it was the most peaceful she had been since they'd taken charge of her. at night, when she started to get into difficulty again, they told me they took her back downstairs, put on the cd, and she fell peacefully asleep within minutes..

 

why do i tell this story? perspective. no matter at times the doubt we have in our creativity, or ourselves, sometimes what we do, or even who we are, the kind of people who "we" are, can make a difference - even if it's only slight, it's a difference none the less. we can use negative experiences to go on and create positive one's - we can use our own dark nights to maybe help illuminate others'. if we keep doing it from the heart and soul, no matter what, and keep it "true", success isn't important. if, on some level, your art can touch someone in such a way that it makes a change, seeds a thought, inspires another fellow human being to create something new, send someone to sleep, or helps a little one rest peacefully... it's all good. nothing bad. keep on creating. keep on looking forwards, no matter how hard that may seem at times. we can't predict the future, because it hasn't happened yet.

Views: 149

Comment by John K-N on June 24, 2011 at 8:26am
Oh, Pete... this was so beautifully written, and such a beautiful story to share.  I know you don't normally share a lot of info with everyone - I'm so very, very glad you did. 
Comment by peter james on June 24, 2011 at 8:50am
many thanks john. i thought long and hard about posting this (and i got permission from my friends to tell the story here). look out for my next blog in 2015 ;-)
Comment by Alex Stretton on June 24, 2011 at 8:57am
Really awesome story, thanks for sharing, your words are extremely on point.
Comment by Apollonius on June 24, 2011 at 9:05am
It's absolutely heartbreakingly beautiful! I recognize a lot in your story especially the doubt one can have that a chosen creative path has real meaning in the grander scheme of life. Most of the time our egos are not capable of seeing the greater picture that such a potential offers. And yes if we keep doing it from our hearts, no matter what (!), success isn't important. I'm looking forward to the 2015 blog. Now that time is speeding up we'll be there in a heartbeat.
Comment by eyes cast down on June 24, 2011 at 9:08am
Well done, Peter! I'd sure like to hear that piece. Your own personal Quiet Music...
Comment by Scott M2 on June 24, 2011 at 9:21am
Thanks for sharing those beautiful stories Peter.
Comment by peter james on June 24, 2011 at 9:24am
thankyou all. i'm touched by your kind words. and Greg - it's barely music at all. maybe i'll upload and share a link.. i'll have a think about it - but it was never really intended for "grown-up" ears".
Comment by John K-N on June 24, 2011 at 9:56am
Peter you'll be surprised how many grown up ears need a little peaceful child music.
Comment by peter james on June 24, 2011 at 10:01am
 :-) you are not wrong there, john ;-) o.k... i'll upload it later on - and should anyone be interested, just drop me a line, and i'll give a link to it, no problem.
Comment by Jim "Sensitive Chaos" Combs on June 24, 2011 at 11:29am
Sometimes it takes those outside forces to open up a window allowing the music to come through. What I love about this story is the evolution of the path that led your foster parent friends to you, connecting this child to the comfort she needed. I believe that we control our own destinies, but I also believe the universe takes advantage of opportunities. Carpe Diem.

Comment

You need to be a member of Relaxed Machinery to add comments!

Join Relaxed Machinery

© 2014   Created by John K-N.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service