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The paradox of change
#2 Keep Slow & Frames
While I am writing these lines, tiny snowflakes are dancing in front of my window. It is 4pm and it’s slowly getting dark. In a few days the sun will start to show up more and more again. I am looking forward to that lot.
For this dark fade-out-days of 2022, I send you two songs, both linked to St. Ruperts Church Vienna, my all time favorite church and silent refuge in this pulsing and moving city. Over the last two years, I developed a special relationship to St. Ruperts. In June 21, a good friend of mine invited me to the so called “silent hour”, a get-together of a small group of people meeting twice a month in the church to be in silence together. At the end of every meeting, live music is being played by different musicians. In between of two musical pieces, someone reads a poem or a spiritual text. That’s it. After attending these meetings for a few times, I was asked to play there as well. So I started to play the songs I had just written back then, not anticipating that a whole album and music project will grow out of it.
For Keep Slow, one of the two songs I am sending you today, I made an atmospheric acoustic video in this ancient building together with some great musicians and friends. Press this link to watch the video. Here you can listen to and download both songs:
Frames | mp3
First live concerts
I am very happy to announce my first two live concerts, both in the north of Germany:
11th of January 2023 | Berlin | Göttin der Weisheit
15th of January 2023 | Hamburg | Wasserturm & Feuerteufel
My first official concerts in Austria will be in May 2023. If you want to listen to Palmanu live before that, you might be interested in the following.
Living room concerts
In addition to the two songs I also want to give away three private living room concerts just for you and your friends. Here is how it works:
If you want Palmanu to play an acoustic concert in your living room, just text me a message. I will come by and play for you and the people you have invited. I give away three of these tiny concerts in a first come first serve way. So be quick, if you want my music live in your living room.
Next month I will send you a love and farewell song for Lola and another one about my struggles to find my own traces in the snow fields of life.
I hope you are having some slow and silent moments in the rush of December! Thanks for listening and being part of this journey!
I wrote Keep Slow last February after being in silence for a week in a small hut in the Hochkönig mountain range close to Salzburg.
The song is inspired by these intense experiences and the book “Flying without wings” by Arnold R. Beißer, an American gestalt therapist. In his book, Beißer describes the paradoxical theory of change, which can briefly be described as follows:
Change occurs when one becomes what he is, not when he tries to become what he is not
This strong thought got me deeply and accompanied me through my days in silence. Keep Slow was also the first song I ever played at the “silent hour” in St. Ruperts. Since the song is therefore linked to the church, I wanted to make an acoustic video for that song within its walls. Ingrid Schrank and the direction of St. Ruperts were very kind and supported me in making the video shoot possible. Thanks a lot for that!
Together with Lukas Weidmann (piano & audio recording), Amelie Tobien (vocals & guitar), Giovanna Fartacek (vocals) and Robin Prischink (percussion) we met in November to do so. Thanks to all of you and to Paul V. Schütz for capturing the session visually. Once again, the link to the video.
In the studio version of the song Lukas plays the piano, Giovanna sings the backings and Mario plays the bass and some percussion.
Lyrics The more you push The harder it gets The more you force to change The less it changes The more you pull The faster it fades The more you try to control The less you feel safe The less you feel safe, You feel safe, feel safe Let go, go, the pressure Keep slow, slow, the breathing I don’t know, no one knows What time will bring to us Let go, go, the pressure Keep slow, slow, the breathing I don’t know, no one knows When life will end for us The more you seek The less you find The more you chase your dreams The longer you stay blind The more you scream The less you hear The more you deny what you feel The less you feel The less you feel, Oh you feel, you feel Let go, go, the pressure Keep slow, slow, the breathing I don’t know, no one knows What time will bring to us Let go, go, the pressure Keep slow, slow, the breathing I don’t know, no one knows When life will end for us The river flows by itself The river flows by itself So let it flow, let it flow, let it flow The river flows by itself The river flows by itself So let it flow Let go, go, the pressure Keep slow, slow, the breathing I don’t know, no one knows What time will bring to us Let go, go, the pressure Keep slow, slow, the breathing I don’t know, no one knows When life will end for us
In spring 2022 I have been part of an inspiring and motivating songwriter circle (www.songwritercircle.club). This community of songwriters represents the root for writing Frames. Each month, one of the musicians participating the circle gives a prompt to which every member of the circle has to write a song within a month. The first prompt I received was the following:
Write a song inspired by an ancient building or place close to where you live.
Of course, I chose St. Ruperts.
Sitting in silence in the church was the starting point for writing Frames. It was April 22 then, two months after the beginning of the war in Ukraine, which occupied me a lot these days. I decided to write some sort of “irritation song” about all the violence and brutality we human beings do to each other every day. Musically I wanted to try something new for me, so I wrote the song in an open Dmajor tuning. The record of Frames is the only one on the whole album, I recorded and played all on my own.
Lyrics In the silence of these stones In the twilight of this hall In the breathing of this air I feel so small In the darkness of these times In the crossing of all lines In this room where spirits shine I feel so small Back and forth and back again We still play these deadly games Does it have to be this way, this brutal way? Do we have to paint in grey and fade away? Hold on, take a breath And listen what your heart just said All this talking without sound All this walking on thin ground All these answers lost not found I feel outbound Back and forth and back again We still play these deadly games Does it have to be this way, this brutal way? Do we have to paint in grey and fade away? Hold on, hold on, take a breath Keep on, keep on, walking death Can’t you see we’re all the same? Just packed up in different frames We don’t learn from our mistakes What a bloody shame Can’t you see we’re all the same? Just packed up in different frames Will we learn from our mistakes one day? Hold on, hold on, take a breath Keep on, keep on, walking death
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