If you have any kind of love for music and yet haven’t read I’m not with the band please go out and enlighten yourselves, then this might make a bit more sense. Otherwise, enjoy the words.
This is my love letter to you, not one that NME dish out to artists that have tickled their whimsical parts, but an authentic one of openness and honesty about my admiration for the way you put words together.
I’d like to begin by pronouncing my fellow detest at the vapid and over-styled nature of today’s music culture, I’m not saying that all of it is shite, not by any means, just that the gems are becoming harder to find amongst the thriving, popular “chart-toppers”.
Quick side note: I couldn’t tell a man thrusting a free NME in my face, one fine Waterloo walk, to fuck off fast enough. As a music mag they should at least possess the consistency to take an opinion of an artist/band and stand by it, rather than telling certain Bottlemen that they’re “ham-fisted”, “nine years too late” and then loving them up upon next encounter.
Back to the book, your musical story is one that caught my attention from the cover, A Writer’s Life Lost In Music, felt like the core of my being summed up in a single sentence. The book reeled me in further with each chapter passed, until was nose was practically pressed into the page by the end of it. You write with such a wonderful brashness and also heartfelt sensitivity, the words ebbing and flowing like waves on the page.
The story always felt grounded in your financial struggle, one that I’m in the midst of leaping into, as I stand toes curled around the edge of the diving board, ready to jump into the whirlpool of living in London and freelance writing. So thank you for reassuring me that graft and grit can see you through the situations, no matter how tricky!
Your sentiments about the ever-changing nature of music culture sparked up my mind, and resounded with the views I hold in there. Music culture does feel like it’s evaporated somewhat, a lost art form wandering in purgatory wondering when it shall be brought back down to Earth. And I say by the likes of unpolished musicians who are writing tunes worth their fucking salt, who are committed to the live moment onstage and are about delivering mass euphoria to the people who have come to feel it.
I’m a nineties bern, sadly I was a mere babe when the Britpop wars were being fought; guess I missed the last big boat to being a rebellious teenager. Never mind, eh? I’ll just have to make me own.
If there was any passage of words to get the people fired up about making the most of this life, it was the last page of your book, it should be on posters plastered all over this world; a reminder to find what’s really important.
In an age that’s obsessed with how they look as a snapchat filter, or how many virtual friendships they can cook up, it has never been more important to “burn away the bollocks” of all that over-hyped nonsense and “find the euphoria” of this wonderful life.
For me, it’s as simple as live music, putting a pen to paper and laughing really fucking loud with another person.
Sylvia, unlike Amy Winehouse, I don’t view you as some old git that I can’t understand. To me, you sound like a lady who has jumped, frolicked and splashed in the clear and muddy puddles of this life; embraced the rain and occasional E and still come out dry and smiling.
You are a beautifully talented writer and above all else I admire and respect your commitment to the music.
Given that this is in the form of a blog post, I can’t help but feel this is a somewhat contradictory format; given the overwhelming culture of bloggers, vloggers and youtuber book deals (FUCK THAT.) But alas these are the times we’re living in, and you’ve just gotta roll with it. (The Gallagher brothers, from your description, sound as beautifully madferit as I hoped.) I couldn’t give two true fucks about style, but I do want my words to be seen and unfortunately now these two walk firmly hand in hand and don’t show signs of breaking up anytime soon.
So I shall play the game and push as hard as I can and when I’ve broken through that wall, I shall burn away the stylised bollocks of the internet for all the world to see.
But for now, I’ll stick to keeping my euphorias burning bright and holding on to what’s important in my life.
I hope these words find your eyes, dear Sylvia, and if it all sounds a bit impersonal; I shall write you a letter.