Shauna Adams – A tribute to Leonard Cohen

Guest contributor Shauna Adams writes a beautiful piece about the legendary poet, songwriter and artist Leonard Cohen  (September 21, 1934 – November 7, 2016)

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I have never revered celebrities. l pay no homage to them or even attention. I do however revere Writers, Artists, Philosophers and Thinkers, that have changed the way people think and feel about life through their art. In my opinion they have given something precious to whoever wants to partake.

They share their vision, insights, images and thoughts and in doing so bring comfort, inspiration, vision, and truth, to so many of us hopelessly thrashing in the dark and drowning in confusion, whilst trying so hard to make sense of life.
Leonard Cohen was one of these people. One of these visionaries able to make sense of the tragedy of life. Bring beauty into confusion and create pictures of an imaginary world where words are able to free you from the restraints of the world.
So many inane cliches abound around his work of “music to commit suicide to and music to die to”…for me his words and music were to live by..to thrive by…to make sense of the life we all spend our lives trying so hard to survive.

I feel so privileged that his music and his alchemy of words was to so inspire me in my own music and writing. I feel so privileged to have lived through the unfolding of his words throughout my life, and up until the end of his own. Honoured that he taught me so much through his art, and shared it so willingly amongst us, to either hate or love it. He taught me to see life and language as sacrosanct. Powerful and playful with the ability to create images so intense and so beautiful that the pictures would shine through the words like a film. A film in which I walked and lived, with a soundtrack that followed..his words..leading and guiding me through a maze of uncertainty with a light that shone so bright l no longer felt alone. Living with a Master reading to you as you grew into who you are. A gift given to a billion strangers with the choice to receive or reject.
I received his teachings, with open and grateful arms, his beautiful words, his fierce images, his intense wisdom, and carried them with me.
I fear now for the those beautiful words and those wonderful visions. Where will they come from. Where will those heavenly words be found now. The Master has died and his words have ended. They will no longer come fresh and new with ever renewing energy and life. There are so few to take his place, so few left and ready to inspire. I search frantically but they are not to be found. Now is an alien world of anger and hate, devoid of dreams and despairing of inspiration. We are troubled, we are undone, we are lost in the crowd, we are bereft of such enormous inspiration. It can no longer be seen or heard, no longer penetrate where “the light gets in” He left us. He said he was ready…said he was done…I mourn not only the loss of a great man and visionary but an art….where will l find the words now. We are left in the dark and now the light cannot get in…

Shauna Adams

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Working on new music videos

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The images above are from the latest Allflaws video shoot for Cast Away from the new album Apparitions.

This summer I will also be working on other videos for the album. I am aiming for 3 videos this year. I have decided to shoot as much footage as I can over the summer for various tracks, and then edit them into finish pieces when the Autumn arrives.  Film and design are something that I love, so this is very exciting for me after releasing the new album. Making music videos is a very dynamic process that requires lots of different aspects and people to really make it work. This I find to be very interesting and I am up for the challenge.

Watch this space people.  The new Allflaws videos are coming. Enjoy the summer and make sh…..t happen.

Gabriel of Allflaws

 

Morning by Gabriel Curran

By Gabriel Curran

The unnatural waking state into the sound of cluttering plates
The pulling from the pillow into the weeping of the willow
The morning breath chill, the waking against your will
The 7:30am spill, of the coffee with no thrill
The removal from the dream into the madness of routine
The frost covered car and the barking dogs of Babylon
They want to keep us here forever until death do us part.

Monday

By Gabriel Curran

The alarm clock rings and billions of people wake up then set off on their daily ritualistic journeys. Scurrying along, catching buses and trains, slurping coffee, reading papers, walking and eating, yawning and wiping the sleep from their weary eyes.
It all seems so harmless, normal and routine. After all, it’s been deeply rendered into our every lives and passed through generation after generation. So who would even stop to question it?
Who would you ever question such a frequent and common occurrence. All through our childhood, we have been preened and prepared for a structured life of mechanical regime, routine and relentless order.
Every governmental institution we ever passed through was getting us ready for this life. This seamlessly chaotic life of diligent busy workers, endlessly clocking in and clocking out.
Society seems to have been ingrained with this submissive attitude, of live for the weekend and hate Mondays. Well why can’t we live for the week and love Mondays like we love Saturdays? It’s been so normalized to feel this way. Everyone dreading this ugly foreboding day called Monday, and everyone counting down and urging the weekend to arrive with baited breath.
The weekend then becomes that one ray of hopeful light, that one bit of pleasure, play and freedom afforded to us by the working system – and governments wonder why so many people obliterate themselves every weekend with rampant hedonistic use of alcohol and drugs.
The weekend becomes this insatiable playpen of manic escapism and temporary relief. The weekdays are just tainted by everlasting drudgery, monotony, lethargy of spirit and soulless repetitiveness.
It’s a rarity to hear someone say they are looking forward to work next week. Instead you hear the same words of discontent, boredom, dissatisfaction and the rest of the other mundane Monday cliches.
Some people are mightily blessed with jobs they cherish and look forward to everyday with passion, verve and vigor. But I feel these people are few and far between and most of them are earning very generous salaries which allow them to have more fruitful existences. The rest of society are just clambering onto low wage pay, barely making ends meet with all their precious time taken up by a ferociously demanding and unforgiving working system.
I suspect most bankers, politicians, sportsman, celebrities love going to work. I bet they love Monday mornings with their expensive coffee and croissants. Well on their wages what do you expect? These people are the very fortunate minority. The majority are just tired and hapless cogs in the machinery. Endlessly turning the wheels of capitalism. Completely subservient to the ridiculous rules that are thrusted upon them.
My words may seem bigoted, melodramatic, ultra cynical and almost dis-utopian. But just maybe this is a glaring and painful truth, and we have all actually been fooled and schooled into believing this is actually the right way to live our daily lives. Just maybe we are so utterly credulous and indoctrinated beyond belief that we don’t even have the vision to know any different. Just passive humanoids relentlessly working and consuming. Never questioning this reality, but merely just playing along.
I myself have been lucky that I’ve been able to mostly avoid this insidious routine and actually do something I enjoy. I’ve had and the privilege of righteously practicing my art, and I have not been too bogged down with things that I don’t really want to do. Maybe I come across deluded and overtly utopian to think that everyone should be able to live like that. Waking up every Monday morning feeling happy, excited and full of joy for their daily tasks. Maybe that’s too much like a fantasy and that is just not possible. But what about more of a balance as a compromise? Where we have a choice of a life style which focuses less on money, attainment and rampant work ethic, but more on time for family, friends, creativity, leisure and spiritual growth. Is that too much to ask?
Well unfortunately in our society politicians would probably never dramatically raise the minimum wage and reduce the working hours to allow people more leisure time. That’s simply out of the question and nothing but a futile dream. So what next? How do we find a way to combat this oppressive way of living?