It is early in the morning, and I am on the job, down at the very bottom of an abyss of words, phrases, and neatly folded plans and tasks. My work day begins early with a shower and walk to a comfortable spot at a coffee shop. It's good to have someone prepare my coffee while I sit wondering. Wondering is meaningful enough to take my attention away from a coffee maker, allowing it to bubble wildly out of control, spit up all over the stove and leave the environs with the sweet burnt smell of overcooked grounds.
Grounds ground into the ground.
It is a good thing to show up and let magic take its turn to handle things. At the spur of the moment, Arturo O' Farrill invited me to sing some backup on Trashed Out, a show about the housing crisis, he was working on and I went with no expectations and full of Jamaican green, my favorite drink from Ms. Lily's. Our rehearsal was at City College and the halls smelled of damp clarinet reeds and I was brought back to the time I attempted to take piano there and decided it was frivolous.
Now, I realize the only frivolous thing in life is doing anything that doesn't bring me joy. Joyful is my natural state and anything that diminishes joy is irrelevant.
We were there -- a group of musicians, having fun. And then, we performed at The Stone to a packed little house. The music was free, avant-garde, morose and humorous. We, the 'we' being Brad Jones, Bill Ware, E.J. Rodriguez, Sam Bardfeld, Roy Nathanson, Arturo O'Farrill, Zack O'Farrill, Josh Roseman, Lloyd Miller, Sandra Lilia Velasquez, were crammed together on a stage, tangled in each others' instrument and microphone cords, sweating profusely and it was perfect.
On Monday, I got the chance to meet Danny Glover, an actor I greatly admire for his devotion to political causes as well as his acting ability and re-connected with Charles Knox Lasister, a fascinating Harlem character and owner of Knox Gallery
And I get a message via Facebook from Julio Ricardo Varela, the founder of the Latino Rebels, saying, we were mentioned in a Forbes Magazine online article. Harmonic convergence, magical realism, and my head reels with nerdish excitement. http://www.forbes.com/sites/giovannirodriguez/2012/10/01/rebel-with-a-latino-cause/2/
My life feels like a beautifully-written and sometimes, badly-acted film and I am merely a character actress waiting for her lines.
Songs-in-progress, script excerpts, photos, and more from this work-in-progress can be found here: http://roynathanson.tumblr.com/