On Almost Becoming a Person
By Eugene Marcus
(This speech was a keynote presentation at the FC Conference in Syracuse, NY, on May 5, 1998.)
What I want to talk about today is about life and fairy tales, and how you know which one you are in at the moment. Seems easy, doesn't it? But sometimes life becomes magical, confusing, and familiar all at once, just like a fairy tale. And so there are times I feel more like Pinocchio than I do like Eugene Marcus.
Never think that I regret this. Fairy-talking is a great way to pass big quantities of unused time. Telling ourselves stories may be relaxing, but it is not going to be a force to make things change. Unless we now move to more serious matters, we will be silenced as sure as Pinocchio on the shelf. Just telling our stories to ourselves changes nothing, but telling them to each other prepares us to be a force for changing the world.
Can we understand the meaning of FC as merely a way of communicating for those [...]
After some years of setback (PESKY Economy!) I am finally moving forward again on my upcoming CD, M O O N. I am recording with Ed Desjardins and Jud Caswell and have to say I am very excited about the results we are getting in the studio!
I'm recording songs JUST RECENTLY FINISHED (Consider the Oyster! - the gruesome truth about our favorite bi-valve, Stay With Me - a love song to the Sun, Wooden Boy - portrait of a young man with autism, Gravity - exploring the outer limits of remorse) and several songs around for a while (Little Plastic Part, Betty Boop and Buddha) plus a few lost gems from my former lives (Home to You - journey to self - more to come!!
I got some interesting feedback months ago while working with vocal coach and improvisation teacher, Rhiannon, who suggested I was not exploring the vulnerable side of my voice. For a time I thought that simply meant I was singing too loud all the time (Guilty, as charged!) and my excuse was that I do a lot of un-miked performances and my voice needs to carry and be strong to be heard. Who doesn't like to belt it out once in a while? I have spent my life training my 'theatre' voice to project across the room (or campfire!) All good, but perhaps "too much of a good thing..." Also, I'll admit a personal bias against performers who sing so quietly they are impossible to hear - are they trying to manipulate me to focus impossibly hard on their song, or have they simply not learned to support their voice - the #1 tool of a singer?
Recently I was loaned a small mixer board (THANKS, ED!) which has many sound effects. I noticed using the effects on guitar and voice drastically changed [...]