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Eric Contractor / Blog

Rockwood Show! Dreams! 2012 Y'all!

As I predicated earlier, 2012 is already shaping up to be a most interesting and magical year so far (though not without a need for some tenacity, intention and effort). First, I have some announcements concerning shows: First, I am playing at set at Culturefix this Sunday at 9:30. I am also extremely excited to tell you all that I will be playing at Rockwood Music Hall on February 18th at 3 PM! Rockwood Music Hall is wonderful place to play, complete with a stage, piano, cool environment, and great lighting. I’ve wanted to play over there for a while and I’m glad I finally have a chance. It’s right in the heart of the downtown corridor in the LES (off Houston Street) and they even have a little rope and carpet in front of the entrance.

(New Song- Check post below to listen)

And I have other developments, but more on an artistic level. Recently, I have been thinking about integrating some spoken word into my sets. At this point, I am trying to just flesh out the details of a larger vision for my music- something bolder, grander, more theatrical. A show that can properly suspend reality to enlarge the possibilities for storytelling and expression. For a newer song of mine, called “In the Floodlights,” I added this spoken intro to set the scene that transpires in the song:

“There was a time we used to meet out back in the floodlights, and we’d wait for each other when there was nowhere else for us to go. Past the clothes lines, the ghostly light of unwatched TV’s,, and the din of cars from the road, we’d find each other there. Our breaths fall upon each other in silence, and pointed towards those parts of ourselves that we wanted to share but couldn’t say. Before we found words, there was an unborn understanding. And we’d faithfully dip into the wilderness of our dreaming, away from the noise and glare of those scenes where appearance and preconceived notions were everything. But here, everything was silently understood. When we stood in the floodlights we had a place to ourselves, a world rendered by our wishes, dreams, and preoccupations. In the surrounding darkness were misunderstandings, the wind was our journey, and the light was our truth.

And so tonight, our constellations are falling And tonight no one but me is calling. So meet me there away from the scene, Hold me close and have mercy on me.”

For me, songwriting is a vessel and vehicle of an an earlier interest of mine, which was poetry. At this point, I want to bring to life a more comprehensive show complete with songs, storytelling, spoken interludes, some stage design, more musicians, video, and maybe some dance? I feel like now, we are in a time of which the suspension of reality is more palpable than ever, and we are learning the ability for all of us to sort of create our own reality and energy, for better or for worse. I think the time is ripe for music, theater, and dreams and in general. This all may sounds like a lot to bring together, but little by little I shall. For now, the songs and the music itself is more than enough.

Forever, (friends suggested I use this tag- we really won’t last forever……or shall we?)

Eric Contractor

Summer Wrap-Up

Hello All! Things have been quite interesting, wild, exciting, and turbulent recently- mostly due to Hurricane Irene’s punishing rain that flooded my mother’s house and the entire town of Denville. I went out to New Jersey for the weekend, and I got an eyeful of some wild scenes: dull fire alarms sounding off everywhere, army trucks plowing through water-ridden highways, and backstreets that became rogue rivers of fury. For those who were nonplussed about the effects of the Irene- it really WAS bad, just not so much in NYC. But everything is slowly returning back to normal, and her house will be fine. With the cool autumn air and dimming light will come some necessary repairs.

In brighter news, I should now inform you that I have a gig at The Waltz-Astoria on October 8th at 8PM. I have some things in the works for this- newer songs, newer (old) songs, and even a collaboration with a certain Libr(o) friend whose birthday will fall the date of the gig. I also played my show at Caffe Vivaldi last week, which was a relatively quiet affair. (Thanks to those who made it out!) Like The Waltz-Astoria, Caffe Vivaldi is a really great place to play because it feels so artist-oriented and not like a bar that incidentally has music going on. I also played an older-newer song of mine called “On the Vine,” one my favorites that I’ve written. I remember it coming in a flash one Saturday afternoon. I have also been writing some new ones:

My notebook/songwriting journal has been rather active recently- and it also doubles as sketch pad- maybe I’ll get the urge to do some drawing?!! (Hint: See Cyclops Man at top of post (the drawing to the right is a print by Seurat)). At this point, I want to get visual in terms of my music- in the future I want to have specific kinds of lighting, clothing, dressing, and visual effects to go along with my music. I can have rather theatrical imaginings sometimes, and I want to incorporate that into shows in the future. I’ve been reading, songwriting, and taking account of everything I’ve done so that I can progress from here.

In terms of the past decade (starting particularly with 9-11) it seems as though our threshold for shock and the surreal has been raised dramatically. I’ve become accustomed to the mysterious and disbelief. On the other side of that, I feel like this is also a time for new conceptions, new ideas, innovation, and new kinds of music/creativity. In short, it feels like anything is possible. What was before a far-fetched idea now seems possible. Words I think of now for current times: extreme, difficult, unpredictable, unprecedented, unique, transitional, revelatory, but ultimately extraordinary. So for now, I continue to write in my room, seeking to amass loose ends towards a purposeful vision. I’ll contine to write songs and sing in the night and day, to an audience or to the lonely echo of my stair hall. Increasingly, as I think about the possibilities for music and communication under a spotlight, it feels so real, vivid, and close. And- don’t count any idea or outcome out – it seems relevant to the times to say that anything is possible.