An election that seems to have been run on fear and anger and conspiracies and that has demonstrated to almost everyone in my newly adopted country just how divided they (we) are.
Then, in the midst of some precedent-setting post-election demonstrations and protests, the news from Canada that the music world has lost one of its great poets (regardless of how you feel about his actual singing), Leonard Cohen.
There have been a lot of tears, shed and unshed this week.
JPJQ is not a political entity. I'm never in the mood to feed any internet trolls. I have my opinions and maybe I'll feel differently when I'm able to vote in this country (which is at minimum 18 months away), but right now I'm glad that, in my little corner of the world, the people I work with have no problems taking direction from a woman (ie: me), and I can do my part to add beauty, joy, and light to the world.
I do it through my teaching - singing or playing songs with about 30 kids and 10 adults every week, encouraging them to communicate, tell the story, and release their tension through making music.
And (finally! we get to the band - way to hijack the blog, Julia!) I get to do it in my performing... taking my own advice and singing/shouting/crying/jubilating, communicating and telling my stories through music.
I love playing music with these, my best friends in Portland. We enjoy one anothers' company, we support and encourage each other, and we work together to make beauty, joy and fun in a world that is sometimes ugly, frightening and confusing.
And that's the crack where the light gets in.
... That got really serious. Here's a silly video of us playing a salsa version of Meghan Trainor's All About that Bass.