If it’s not a Volcano, it’s an Emergency Door light…

Schermafbeelding 2010-07-02 om 06.09.24-1 (dragged)

I sit on my couch, with my sad tail between my legs.
I should be in Montreux Switzerland right now, enjoying one of the most prestigious music festivals in the world, on what would be the day after playing one of my most anticipated shows of 2010. when the invitation came up a few months back to play the Montreux Jazz Festival w/ Roxy Music, i was honored and thrilled. “YES” i said right away. from my family’s swiss roots, to french being my second language, to a feeling of being acknowledged as an established artist in my own right by an important music festival

Due to an Emergency Door Light malfunction, my Air Canada flight from Montreal to Geneva, was delayed hours, then when it was too late to find an alternative route, CANCELLED. heartbroken, i stayed up all night, waiting for morning to come to see if the festival promoters could find another stage or bill to fill the next day… they tried, but as they are such an organized festival with months of preparation, they could not find a way……

DEVASTATED….. in the last 24 hours, i have gone from numb to tears and back again.
my emotion fueled imagination brain kept orbiting around these three major LIFE issues:


i know it’s just a missed show, but the emotional side of me sends me reeling into the big picture symbolic stuff when these disappointments occur…. first of all, last time i was in europe, just a couple of months ago all was stopped due to VIKING VOLCANO. in my 15 years plus of touring around the world, i’ve never missed a show. never run into a volcano or had a flight cancelled. for both things to happen in such a short period of time, is shocking to me. so being held back from playing my swiss show, i got instant flashbacks of watching my oslo and london show pass me by…. that time was due to act of god AKA MOTHER NATURE, IN FORM OF ICELANDIC VOCANO.

so naturally it was again, that feeling of things being out of my hands… but this time was because of a DYSFUNCTIONAL CORPORATION: the failing airline industry that do not have back up planes, parts OR pilots. while my artistic fate sat in a holding pattern in an airport for 6 hours, i learned that there is a PILOT shortage and crisis, with airline pilots making as low as $19,000 a year. the unions in that industry have been destroyed, so there is little protection for pilots. this then leads the mind back to 9/11, when the industry took a huge hit (not to mention the other devastations), then a few years later, the price of fuel went soaring up: ENERGY CRISIS, we find ourselves in a non sustainable way of life, that is not only polluting our planet, but is in dire need for alternative energies systems. scientists have beein warning about both sides of the issue for decades, but corporate greed was only thinking about TODAY> well TODAY, we have a leaking oil rig environmental disaster looming over us. so the least of our worries, but no surprise, is that the airline industry has been tanking …. so flights are overbooked, no back up plans in place etc… that brings up the issue of FAILING CORPORATIONS of the world. not only did these beasts take the power away from individuals and independent companies, but now their greed has caught up with them and has shot them in the foot.. limping along, screwing the people who work for them and the people who depend on them for their work… this is a basic corporate frustration rant…. BUT the volcano flashbacks also lead me to….
THE MOTHER NATURE. when a volcano tells you what to do, you have no choice but to be humble and listen. she does have the final say, and our jet setting modern day ways are weak and ridiculous in the wake of her. which brings us back to the unsustainable way of life that’s been created around us, and the slaves to corporations and the economy we’ve become. then we think there’s no time to think of such small things, but all these issues do bring on a lot of pain to the hearts of ART- not that the ART suffers, because that energy is eternal no matter what the external reality is, but the act of SHARING THE ART INSIDE, with the outside real world, is affected by the rise and fall of technology and the economy.
we may have forgotten by this point of my long rant, but i began talking about my cancelled show at the montreux jazz festival and how an emergency door light on a plane broke my heart. 2010 saw the release of my first independent music and art undertaking. i’ve never worked so hard, and i’ve embraced all the changes and challenges in the landscape, from dying record companies, to volcanos, but truth is, it’s tough out there. most nations and people are struggling in their own ways. however, i do believe the struggle inspires harder work and opportunity for the heart to take over (why must i find that falling down, brings my hopes so high?) – this is when the intangible CREATIVE SURVIVALISM kicks in… the golden web of love, imagination and hope begins to spread. wrapping every struggle and cancelled flight into a poetic song of life. luckily, that source of magic is endless, and in all of us. even still, on my way home from having done all i could to get my self to switzerland, i cried in defeat. it wasn’t a beautiful volcano that stopped me from sharing my heart, it was an emergency light in an aircraft, then a long delay while the humans tried to fix it, then by the time it was fixed, it was too late for the scheduled pilots to fly, and they did not have any pilots on hand to FLY MY HEART TO MONTREUX. my heart aches because of it, and my little brain tries to make sense of it…………………… my brain relies on the magic stuff from the heart to get by. if i did not have that golden web to spin, i guess i’d be depressed and would probably not write songs… or long winded blog entries.
golden web
to get you through your day and your disappointments.
HOPE TO SEE YOU SOON (in particular, the people of french switzerland, i owe you x)
have a great weekend, wherever you are sweet person x


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23 Responses to “If it’s not a Volcano, it’s an Emergency Door light…”

    Necessity is the MOTHER of invention
    and birthing is painful


  2. Kittiebadluck says:

    All my thoughts are with you…I can understand your sadness.
    When times get harder, i always remember this quotation from Saint Exupery, a French writer: “C’est face a l’adversite qu’on se decouvre”
    This man was incredible and guess what, he was a pilot during the Second World War. He wrote one of the most inspirational book ever “Le Petit Prince”

    I think you would love this book…

  3. karl olof says:

    Hi M. We had been looking forward to seeing you in Montreux and came from Geneva (not that far away). Roxy Music was OK: the sound was soso but the performance powerful. Instead of you we got John mcLaughlin and Billy Cobham jamming for an hour. It was impressive but not the same. Cheers. Hope to see you sometime soon in Switzerland again. A Bientot

  4. Mariano says:

    Oh, man. This is devastating.

    I spent all day yesterday thinking about your show at Montreux, and how happy you’d be. Then, I came home and found out it was canceled. I was puzzled, but I never thought something like this would be the cause.

    I’m really, truly sorry you missed it, and I also fell sorry for those who were expecting you in Switzerland. I know I would be crashed if something like this happened and I was the one eager to see you.

    On a complete different subject, last night I dreamed I saw you. I can’t remember the exact nature of the event, but it wasn’t a regular show. It was more of a stripped down thing, like you your bass, a piano and some pre-recorded sound effects (I remember they were pre-recorded because after you left the venue, there were a couple of CDs above the piano, and one of them was labeled “magic live sounds”).

    The real point of the event was the release of OOOM, under a new form. I remember the content was insided a vinyl case, and it consisted of several slides. They were stills from the short film, but they weren’t common slides. They had some sort of code in them, and we were supposed to play them in a special device (I never got to see it), because not only would they be projected, they would also play music. So, there were like 50 slides or so, and each of them would produce different sounds inspired by OOOM. Too bad I woke up before I could listen to them. I wish I could draw or paint, because the images are really vivid, and I’d like you to see this new form for OOOM, even if it’s completely imaginary.

    Anyway, I hope your weekend picks up. We don’t want your nose to bleed (you know what I mean, right?).

    Huuuuge hug!

  5. Mariano says:

    I misspelled so many words! Sorry! X(

  6. Gavin says:

    True about the effects of naked capitalism; upside, can be cheap. Downside; sucks for almost every-one involved. We’ve abandoned civilisation for commercial Darwinism, and damn the casualties.

  7. heidi says:

    Oh, that reminds me of the 2 expensive fines I got in May for stupid reasons. I hadn’t cried so much in a long time. Infuriated, sadden low. “Why the f****ck?”, when you feel you’re working so hard at doing things “right”, “from the heart” and all… What is “Life” trying to tell me? Slow down? Move less? Focus more? Still pondering… but, well, yep, as we say in french: “Haut les coeurs!!”.

  8. Jan says:

    That’s really ¿#@%¥$ !

    It’s easy to see that capitalism fails, but there doesn’t seem to be an realistic alternative and if there would be one, it would be impossible to develop in a peacefull way.

    We all know how though it was for you to bring out ooom, that’s why we all (sort of) admire you. But you can’t imagine how happy we are now, when we finally (after all those years) can put that CD in our CD player and listen to your story, your piece of ART.

    I agree with you about the energy crisis, we need alternative energy sources. But from my perspective as science student there is no need for any crisis. We can’t just change all energy sources by windmills or solar power immediatelly. Nuclear power of the third generations gives almost no radioactive junk and is more safe than an air canada airplane with the light of the emergency door broken.

    Maybe a ‘heartline’ session would cheer you up? Dry you tears Melissa, the sun is shinning and we are too.

    See you at Rock Herk! 🙂

  9. Avalon says:

    Wow… sorry to hear about your tough day.

    But this comment from Jan says so much….
    “But you can’t imagine how happy we are now, when we finally (after all those years) can put that CD in our CD player and listen to your story, your piece of ART.”

    I listen to your music every day. It is a godsend.

  10. Loffa says:

    Dear Melissa! The sadness of losing the Oslo show came right back to me and I feel so sorry for you!
    I agree with everything you said here. Thanks for writing it. Sometimes the punches that life deliver, with such sharp irony, feels mocking to me…but all we can do is keep on keeping on.
    You have proven that you can do anything you set your artistic mind to! 🙂
    peace & power

  11. Sari H. says:

    Tea, rock out, jam session, beer. Write, create, move on. Make your next show twice as heavy! Beneath every cloud is a blue sky!

    “World Turning” – Fleetwood Mac

  12. Dominic Gauthier says:

    Don’t make a depress darling! Come to me, i will console you, I will help you to write beautiful songs like you do, maybe you and i together we could make master-pieces like you use to do… Don’t worry i still loving you even if you miss some shows… I’m stronger than this or maybe crazier than stronger… anyway; I JUST WANT TO LET YOU KNOW THAT I LOVE YOU, the way you are, no matter what you did/do… You can displace a show or anything but YOU CAN’T DISPLACE A PERSON!
    I THINK to your father and other very important people in your life dear Melissa. I think once again that you understand me.

  13. Anna says:

    I was in Montreux that night (and btw: I agree with Karl about the festival night). It’s a shame you couldn’t make it! But this incident seems to have been very inspiring – your thoughts are impressive and intriguing. And how funny the malfunction would be an emergency door light! Because there is no emergency door to this planet…

  14. Sweet, that’s exactly what I was shooting for! You just saved me alot of work

  15. Andy says:

    loveley Melissa,
    It´s sad and strange. but as u know, live goes funny ways.nothing is really ´accident´. Maybe there´s a reason for that an you can see that in the next time..

  16. I don’t believe it’s a First Amendment issue either. However, I do believe it’s a Fifth Amendment issue and a Tenth Amendment issue and at most, this should be a state matter

  17. Book marked your website. Appreciation for giving. Definitely well worth enough time clear of our studies.

  18. solar power would be cheaper it we could just cut down the cost of solar cells.*;

  19. solar power is great because it is a reneweable source of energy and non-polluting too’~*

  20. You need to really control the remarks on this website

  21. stew says:

    your cute mel! 🙂 and you need a web design guy like me! 🙂 *hugs*

  22. My family is what you might call working class poor. Money has always been scarce but in this neighborhood, we fit right in. Life is tough for everyone here.

    My children all excel academically and are each highly “Gifted and Talented”. They are classified as “Off the charts intelligent”, but the truth is they hardly try. Their real passion lies in creativity. Music, poetry, painting, drawing, photography, etc. I can see it in their eyes. Their souls are at peace when they create.

    My daughters are all still very young (the eldest being 15 and has already been a two time Valedictorian, and well on her way to making a third #1 victory by graduation time in two years). The other two just get progressively smarter. I named them Melody, Harmony, and Symphony. They each have the mind of a Harvard grad with the unmistakeable beauty of their mother.

    We’ve never had much, but the jar of nickels and dimes has allowed us to purchase several guitars, a bass, amps, drums, a piano and a few other things I might be overlooking. The rest of the house is old, empty and frankly, like my 20yr old car…falling apart, but the music instruments and the magic they create transport us away from here and to another place. A happy place. We’re not poor in that place. We’re rich with love and happiness.

    You have been the single biggest musical inspiration to my three little budding artist. The world considers them Ivy League material, but the world has yet to discover their true, still developing gifts.

    My girls are quiet, kind, sensitive, giving, environmentally conscience little people. They have huge hearts and I think they’re going to leave their mark on this world somehow, some way. I’m just honored to be the caretaker with a front row seat to something special.

    Keep doing what you do. Little girls with Fender Basses bigger and heavier then they are looking to you for direction and motivation. Rock on (please).


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