Little Ray of Light

from by Artemis, Steve Lawson & Daniel Berkman

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This was our second gig, at Preston's house in Foothill Ranch. Steve Nakamura was there, doing live charcoal drawing to the music as it bubbled up through the evening. At the end of this track, you can hear his charcoal scribbling. I love that it is part of the soundscape.

I'm always blown away when listening to Steve and Daniel play together, at how one of them can take a sudden left turn in some direction, and the other is always right there with them...they never for a moment lose one another. Apparently that happens with the three of us as well, I hear it in this track and others. It's a wonderful level of synergy and spontanaeity and mututal trust, and I love that we can have this kind of conversation. Perhaps all art is conversation of one sort of another. Exploration, with one another or with ourselves and our inner & outer guides...

The lyrics on this piece I came up with between the first gig and this one. "Little ray of light" was a line which came to mind during the first night's second trio improv (which I didn't include on this album), but I censored myself and didn't sing it because at that moment I thought it was a silly line. Ahhh, the internal censor. Improv is a wonderful opportunity to unplug that. I later told Daniel about it and he said he liked the line. Then I saw a post of Facebook of a poem by Ranier Maria Rilke that I'd had framed in my bedroom during childhood...the rest of the words were an adaptation and exploration of that poem's theme. The "question mark" reminds me of the young lover in the film "Room with a View" which I also watched a lot growing up. I always loved his question mark.

lyrics

question mark in your mind
little ray of light
tendril unfurl
spiral unwind
not looking for answers
just loving the question
just loving the question
like a book unopened
in an ancient language
a friend you've never met
sending a message
saying come home
come home
you've been here all along

looking up to the stars
question mark in your mind
little ray of light

credits

from For Now, released November 26, 2013

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Artemis San Francisco

Spectral keyboard washes and sinuous dance beats set up a feeling of warm alienation while Artemis’s voice heats things further. Over the thump and shimmer, she croons with detached fervor, the music dissolving in a storm of pixie-dust disco until a rude riot of effects snaps the tether and she vanishes. ... more

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