SONG WAVE

SOME OF THE MANY CONTRIBUTORS TO THE SONG WAVE PROJECT MIGHT ENJOY THIS BLOG FROM THE SONGWRITER  AND CO -ORDINATOR OF THE PIECE -CLARE WATSON

CLARE WRITES:

This is a special song (I hope). I’m writing it in response to Frightened Rabbits’ “The Loneliness and the Scream” and it will be for people all over the Scottish Borders (an actual county for those who don’t know) to sing on 17th May. It will be inspired by this year’s festival theme “Connected”.

Why this date? Because it is in the middle of the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival. Song Wave is a project that wants to encourage people to sing. Singing is uplifting and community forming and very good for our mental health..

But how do you write a song? In this case I started with asking for contributions of words, musical phrases, thoughts. I actually received several whole songs, a video and some words.

The next step was to listen repeatedly to all the songs, watch the video many times and take down notes. Notes of some of the words and images that caught my attention. I wrote down everything inspired by each work separately then hung the words around my room.

I walked up and down looking at and repeating the words out loud. Then I sat down and started to write.

This is the ideas phase and anything goes at this stage. In fact it is important to reject nothing that comes up because it is all a necessary part of the process. Bits of tunes slip into my head and I go to my trusty zoom R8 to record what comes.

After a while I felt the need to move so decided to go for a walk before the light went. Yes, walking is also part of my process. The sun was streaming over the valley and everything was looking gorgeous. I was walking back up the hill thinking about rhythm and the heart. I started clapping a heartbeat. I was breathing heavily as I got to the top of the slope. That sounds interesting, I thought, and rushed to get home to record it. As I said, this is the phase of anything goes.

 SOME BACKGROUND TO THE SONG WAVE PROJECT:

For the festival, we would like to create a beautiful tribute to Scott Hutchison in recognition of his suffering with mental health issues and the legacy he left of hope and kindness – and of the importance of connecting with those around you.

On Friday 17th May 2019 we are hoping to create a ‘Song Wave’ throughout the Scottish Borders (and beyond!) that connects our local communities, young and old, by singing a new song that we work together to produce and perform.

The new song is intended to be a response to one of Scott’s Frightened Rabbit songs The Loneliness and the Scream. Could you help us to produce a new song – one that reaches out a hand, that glues the community together?

We are hoping the new song, curated and arranged by Clare Watson, voice coach and singing tutor , will be performed by individuals, groups, choirs and schools all over the Borders with organised and pop-up performances posted on social media using#SongWave ,and  also included on the next Sound Cycle album. Any donations raised at performances will be given to the newly established Scott Hutchison Fund, a new mental health charity in memory of Scott.

Song Wave 1 – How to write a song?

THE LONELINESS AND THE SCREAM

Frightened Rabbit

Can you hear the road from this place?
Can you hear footsteps, voices?

Can you see the blood on my sleeve?
I have fallen in the forest
Did you hear me?

In the loneliness
oh the loneliness and the scream
to prove to everyone that I exist
in the loneliness
oh the loneliness and the scream
to bring the blood to the front of my face again

Am I here?
Of course I am, yes
All I need is a hand
to drag me out again

It wasn’t me, I didn’t dig this ditch
I was walking for weeks
before I fell in

To the loneliness
oh the loneliness and the scream
to prove to everyone that I exist
in the loneliness
oh the loneliness and the scream
to fill a thousand black balloons with air

We fall down, find God
just to lose it again
glue the community together
we were hammering it

I fell down, found love