Now she's finally free,
To sing her song,
I hear a whisper
"This is where I Belong."
Although I remember the stories of the songs that came back to me after being in a coma, there's only one that I actually remember writing.
It's a song called 'Belong' which I wrote around 18 years ago in 2002.
The reason I remember writing it could be because it forms a long term memory. Apparently they become more ingrained in the brain and are harder to let go of.
When I look back I see myself sitting (or kneeling) in a tiny room that I'd converted into a studio. Night after night I worked literally through the night.
I don't think the drive was even to finish the song, it was more like a meditation.
My partner worked regular hours during the day whereas I worked in the evening so we were like ships passing in the night.
The story of the song almost prophesises how our time together ended. Almost as though it was telling, predicting or even creating, the future.
It's sung by a female but she sings for them both.
She's waiting for him but not because she has to.
She's just waiting for him to show up.
She'll only wait so long.
He's a drifter who keeps on drifting
He finally comes home but he finds her gone
and we hear
"You're far away from me."
Then after all those long, obsessive nights the song never saw the light of day.
I held on to it too afraid to let go, years went by and still it went unsung.
As we humans often do I'd created a strategy that meant it was never quite 'ready'.
The strategy was based around a voice sample from an old film.
The sample had been the inspiration for the song but without it being cleared it would've been too risky to release.
However as I've now painfully discovered, a song will find a way to say "I am ready."
It will say it quietly and if I don't listen it'll turn up the volume. If it still doesn't feel heard it gets louder and if I put my hands over my ears it will become so loud that......
One September morning - now in the year 2020 - it woke me up.
It was a few days after my birthday and all week I'd felt the tide changing.
I decided if I was going to drown, I wasn't going to take it with me.
As soon as I asked "how" I realised the answer had been there all along.
Find a way to take out the sample then there's nothing in the way.
It meant getting out of bed, getting practical and getting on with it.
To do the editing I'd need the machine I'd created the song on but I'd sold mine so I'd have to find one to hire.
It's called an MPC2000XL which is vintage and quite rare but there is a fantastic hire company in West London (FX rentals) that still had one intact
I travelled down on the train and walked through wind and through rain.
It was heavy but I had to carry that weight, I couldn't give up.
With a lot of help, I got it home, got it set up and got to work.
Sitting up late, staring at the screen on the same machine was surreal and a bit scary.
It took me back to a dark place from a past life but by morning it was finished.
Ready to be released and ready to be heard.