21.01.2023 | “Sing for Your Sorrow Your Wisdom, Your Rage, Sing Out”

Lyrics: “Pass It Along” ~ Frank Turner, 211

Fangirling | These past few days / weeks I haven’t listened to Frank Turner’s music all that much. Just recently I’ve put it on more often, in the car mostly and belted along to some songs. I think it’s seeing more of him and about him on my social media that got me back into it.

Last night was the start of Frank’s current UK tour.

Frank Turner, Lost Evenings V, Berlin 2022
Frank Turner, live 2022

I had originally planned to visit the show in Wolverhampton tonight with two good friends. One of them lives near Wolverhampton and it’s a weekend, so it seemed like a good option. A variety of reasons – mostly the amount of work at work at the moment, but also the craziness of travelling hundreds of miles for just one gig – made me opt out of the plan a while ago. Other dates on this tour were or seemed – at the time when I would have had to make plans – impossible to do. And I was fine with sitting this tour out; the first one I haven’t at least seen one show of since 2016.

For a long time I hoped they would bring the same tour (support bands) over to Europe directly after in March / April and I’d see the show and band and Frank then. That is not going to happen though, as his schedule has been filled with other shows (Down Under) by now. This morning another music friend sort of confirmed what I had feared: that Frank will play quite a few festivals here in the summer, but not headline tour / shows. Which would mean I won’t see them play a regular gig here until October or even later. By regular I mean: full band 100 minutes set and not just a 60 minutes ‘greatest hits’ festival slot. But by regular I also mean the chance to catch Frank and the others at the bus or elsewhere outside the venue for a quick chat. Over the years I’ve come to appreciate that these encounters are possible on occasion with this band. I know how privileged we – in Europe – have been in this regard in the past and now that things seem to normalize with COVID I was hoping to get back to that. What can I say, I’m a fangirl.

Anyway, realizing that none of this most probably will happen till the end of year made my mood plummet for a while. Like plummet to the very bottom of the deep well of anguish and anxiety. But luckily by now I am – through therapy or just having read enough self-help guides – able to stop that disastrous train of thought after a short time. And investigate why these emotions occur. And what they mean. And what they don’t. And how incredible it actually is, that I’m by now able to stop and reset this train of thought. Go me!

I still can’t imagine going so long without seeing Frank and the Sleeping Souls at least on a stage, so I booked a day ticket for a festival in Belgium in early August. If there will be reasonably affordable day ticket for other festivals they will play I might go there too. Again, I’m a fangirl.

Women in Music | While I checked out the line-up of that day at that festival I was once again baffled by the lack of women on stage. I probably wouldn’t have noticed it, as I hardly knew any of the other bands announced. But the line-up page had band photos. 20 acts. From what I gathered by scrolling through the page on my phone, there are two female only, two more with one female band member. That’s fucked up, isn’t it? To be fair, I know I’m “part of the problem” so to speak. I’m going there to watch 5 men on stage. And these days I do listen to more male singers in often mostly male bands.

But I wonder why that is? I guess I’ve been more exposed to male voices in my formative (music preference wise) teenage years in the late 80s / early 90s, because of mainstream exposure on TV, radio and such. I did have a few female artists that I loved, but sort of lost track off after a while. In the age of streaming services and such it’s easier to find female artists for sure, but you still have to go looking, right? I’m determined to do that. Right now I’ve got my former favourite Brandi Carlile on on my streaming service of choice. I need to do that more often.

COVID | I’ve recently noticed how I seem to have changed my behaviour in regards to or/and my thoughts on COVID and all the regulations and such over the past few weeks. Numbers around here have been falling for a while, and even as the number of cases isn’t as reliable as it used to, even the most reliable – ICU patients – is falling, so that’s a good sign. I don’t know if the lack of regulation and the way our government seems determined to steer us through it no matter what have worn me down. Or if I’ve actually lost some of the worry and fear of this virus and what an infection would / could mean for me as an immunocompromised person. I had it in October 2022 and while it wasn’t good, it wasn’t too horrible either. I thought and still think I got back to the same level of health / fitness I had before. I don’t know if there will be any long lasting negative effects of it. I don’t know if I want to know, because what would I do? I can’t change the fact that I had it.

I’m also not going out of my way anymore with masking up or not doing stuff for fear of getting exposed again. I used to be very meticulous about it until the beginning of the year, maybe. Now I don’t always mask up in the supermarket or for a quick stop at a shop. I don’t mask up at the office or in work meetings anymore. Hardly anyone else does and I admit I’m quite tired of being the only one left with a mask on. I still do wear a mask in certain situations like a crowded mall or on public transport (but that’s still mandatory here for a few more day anyway). I just don’t know what to think of this change in my attitude and/or behaviour. Due to my health situation the fear of getting COVID has been such a huge part of my mindset for so long that it feels weird to let go of that / see that disappearing? I don’t even know how to put it. It wasn’t a conscious decision on my part, I just noticed it at some point.

Winter | Is back here for a while. Snow, ice and the like. Not unusual for January in central Europe. Still… Ugh! It would have been fine hadn’t I had to drive to work on the day the snow and ice set in. I hate driving in these conditions. I’m also not a fan of cold hand and cold feet inside. I don’t want to turn the heating up more than I need. And I’m not really freezing, just been sitting here still on my couch typing away. Wrapping my hands around a mug of hot coffee (light on the caffeine, much more oat milk) after I post this might do the trick.

The Rest | I’ll spare you the random stuff and tidbits from my week. It’s been all the same. Work. Worry. Feeling slightly overwhelmed and disorganised. But I’m working on it. More on that maybe at a later date, if my work pays off 😉  

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