Lesley's Music Notes
(Draft 4) - 15 April, 2019 posted at 16:59 EU time
Songwriting becomes most interesting when you are carried off in an unexpected direction. Often it is a theme that reflects a phase of your life, or a very personal experience, that will galvanize you into action and make you want to write on a particular theme. That desire to write is the spark, but bringing that tiny spark to life is the realization of a completed song. These two things are commonly referred to as 'inspiration' and 'creation.' For a songwriter it can be an emotional experience, almost like giving birth, and each song you create has it's own distinct voice and personality.
Elephant in the Room is a song that I wrote when we were living in Montreal. Everyone has their own Elephant in the Room as some aspect of their life (see definition below). So I would call this a universal theme.
Cambridge Dictionary (online) definition:
If you say there is an elephant in the room, you mean that there is an obvious problem or difficult situation that people do not want to talk about.
Thesaurus: synonyms and related words
Difficult situations and unpleasant experiences.”
The Elephant in the Room that I write about is described in details, such as that it is pink, to bring a whimsy and life to a more serious subject, which is that no-one wants to face a serious problem;
If they think
I can’t see
He’s so pink . . . “
and it takes up a specific space in the room;
“Lying in the corner, asleep most of the day
With one eye open, watching, everything you say . . . ”
Feelings of melancholy are also ascribed to the elephant;
“It must be sad to never laugh
It must be hard to never cry
When no one hears you
And no one wants to try
To understand, that you exist, and why . . . ”
Elephant in the Room © Lesley Young (SOCAN). All rights reserved, 2017.
What is this pink Elephant in the Room, and why did it come to be? To me, explaining the situation in the song was not important. I wanted to leave a space for the listener to bring their own Elephant and their personal experiences to the song. Sheila Davis an expert songwriter and teacher has often talked about. That is what is known as the universalisation of a theme.
This song has never been recorded, it’s also never been heard by an audience. I’m looking forward to changing that in the near future.
Secret link for blog readers only: LISTEN to preview
(1 min:58 seconds clip) - Elephant in the Room (solo). Roughly recorded on my Zoom digital recorder.
Note: this is a work in progress.
For those of you who celebrate this holiday, wishing you Happy Easter!