On Friday I felt like ass on a plate, or as the French say, 'une assiette'. Both physically and mentally. It's cold season, which explains the physicality, and mentally - well, of course it's my boss. I sort of swing between missing him and realizing for the first time what a shithole the world can be sometimes.
Nonetheless that night I dragged myself to a concert with the F-word and some of his friends: this one. And it was lovely, and I don't think anything else could have reached me properly that evening, since when I've been feeling substantially better. Julia Charkova of Khakassia - her instrument and her nasal tuneful singing - was very lovely and sent my brain off thinking about Mongols and what they've done to music as well as the map of Asia.
And then Albina Degtyareva of the Sakha republic was incredible. I read the programme, I knew she's been to university to put as all in a shamanistic state of mind, but it put me in mind of some militant First Nations guys who used to live around my hometown, who were anxious to recover their culture and willing to do so through the medium of dreams and meditation in the cases where us fishbellies had successfully expunged the record. But in Sakha I guess the degree of isolation was so huge that even the Russian Orthodox Church is calling them syncretic, and going to one of the republic's university's is a way of dreaming or meditating . . . I don't know. It gave me a powerful urge to go there, though.
And she was incredible, it was really incredible, what can I say? It took me outside of myself at a time I really needed to be taken outside of myself. Like a Jehovah's Witness knocked on my door right after my dog died. I'm grateful I just had some quick shamanistic exposure on Friday instead of bumping into any religions that would require me to stop boffing the F-word extramaritally, now that I think about it.
Here she is with her old band:
Here's another with more giumbarde - sorry, just can't bring myself to call it a jew's harp - except I guess I just did.