Berlin blows my mind. Every moment alive and witnessing the awesome energy, massive humanity, creativity, presence that I find in myself to take it all in. Played some songs on the ukulele outside at a cafe today, attracting a woman with chopsticks that she played like drumsticks, then handed them to James, who had just told me about the electronic drums and beat writing he’d been working on for the last couple years. Magic.
James knows of a recording studio where they’ll record two songs start to finish for 50 Euros. Sounds like a good deal to me. Hmm.. . .
That conversation happened because I went to play some music for Ralf Schmerberg at his MindPirates office, and nobody was around, or they didn’t hear my klingel. Tricky not having a phone yet here in Germany. Ralf and his fantastic team created the concept and organization, ‘dropping knowledge,’ check it, .org, and they just put out the movie of the epic event they created, The Table of Free Voices, and beyond, premiering last week in San Francisco and earlier in the month, in Berlin. “Dropping knowledge empowers you to seek answers to questions in dialogue with others. When you ask in order to understand, when you respond in order to share, this is dropping knowledge.”
So I missed Ralf and crew today, try again next week. I went on my merry way and stopped at a cafe to use the wifi. Figured I’d get a little salad and a mineralwasser. James came strolling by after his shift at my favorite hostel there in Kreutzberg, HostelXBerger. James is a super pro bass player, from Holland and living in Berlin now for, I forget, 10 years? 20? He says it’s not possible for musicians to make a living in Berlin because none of the venues pay, and he doesn’t perform out much at all, he says, for that reason. But there are sooo many venues with constant music flowing out. Good thing the cost of living is still pretty cheap in Berlin.
I took the train to Wiesenburg, a groovy village outside of Berlin, one hour on the train, where I’ll play an outdoor concert on Friday night. I was invited by Harald, who is co-facilitating an art and environment retreat for international youth and wants me to be a part of it. The retreat starts tomorrow, and most of the students are already here, so we had a fire after dinner and I sang for about an hour. The teenagers were most excited by my songs, applauding and asking for more. And Harald’s friend Sebastian plalyed quite awesomely the violin with me as if we had practiced. Fun times! Furthur was rockin, and The River felt like a river flowing through.
The fire was warm, and I felt so much stronger than I was 3 years ago when I visited and played my songs in the same places. I know my confidence has everything to do with the last three years I lived with Benjamin, being treated like royalty, with such deep love. Thank you Benja! I am forever changed.
I am not tired. I am on California time. But I suppose I must adjust, and so I will stretch out and sleep, for tomorrow is coming soon.