There are certain points in life when we pause and consider our mortality. You know those times when it starts to sink in that we will not be here on this earth forever. One of those points for me was last week when Prince died.
Growing up in Minneapolis, Minnesota, definitely had it perks and one of them was the vast and amazing array of arts.
Music was, as I have often said, my drug of choice, and as a Minneapolitan I was blessed to have an unusual variety of talented musicians and bands to see most every weekend. One of those talents was Prince.
I stood next to him (pre-Purple Rain) for a brief few minutes; as he watched one of my favorite local bands. And not long after, I stood a few feet from him as he played to an intimate crowd of twenty-five at First Avenue’s 7th Street Entry. The man had an energy I had never met before. I remember standing directly in front of him and intuitively seeing a sudden flash of a rocket coming up from deep in the earth. There was so much heat around it, there was no way it wouldn’t reach its destination. To be honest, I found the vision to be a little intimidating.
I didn’t know him personally but we were kindred spirits just the same. He escaped into his music and I knew that escape. Music and the divine love of it provides a soul to soul link.
No matter where we stand on politics or the planet, if we loved the music of Prince, it is together that we mourn the loss of this generous, philanthropic, beautiful, poetic, and extraordinarily talented man. I remember where I was all those years ago when I floated in the music to escape and am so grateful for artists such as Prince who lived what they loved and created magnificently as a result. The spirit survives and so does the music. I am grateful for this and also thankful that we still have so many beautifully talented musical artists on the planet. Let the music play.
Transported Through a Rite of Passage
My dearest ally has long been music. Music, melody and lyrics were once vital links to where I housed my soul. Some of my peers used drugs or sex to put distance between their now and before. Me, I worked it out in part, on the dance floor. It was a rite of passage for me.
Talented local bands played frequently in my home town. I was part of that scene. Dressed in unconscious-wear, I would go to be moved. I’d pay at the door; find my place on the floor. Out went the lights, on with the music…the drum beating methodically through my body…it would take me, take me, gone.
Empowered by the feel of the light in and around me, I moved, I grooved, I whirled, I stepped I climbed…..tossing my head methodically, long-dark-curls slapping my tear-stained-face. I was dancing away from my past where love carried a knife in its small heart and the memories burned me speechless.
Then my trust in the music laid open my chest, pulled at my heart and feet to move me forward, forgive, step away, step away and begin again. So from a place in my past and a peek at my future, I returned to the Minneapolis bar where the lights were low and the air was filled with the scent of pot, smoke and alcohol.
Exhausted from the journey, lifted by the ethereal experience, I stepped off the dance floor and more fully into my life, my right of passage in motion.
(©Jodi Livon, 1986-)
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