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After the recording is before the recording….

The recording for “Alleingeburt” began in December 2017… 9 months ago. Hannes, the sound engineer, had had a baby in July, and we had ours in October. It’s been a busy time. A good time. Nevertheless, things have taken their time, and what began as an idea, a wish to record songs, became a process […]

Musician? Don’t talk about it…Just be it!!

I hear us all – those of us who have decided to perform for a living – explain to audiences that we are musicians. That this is something we do for a living. Professional. The trouble is, the more I hear this, the more I have the feeling inside that something is not right. The point is, you don’t have to be a professional musician (Someone who earns money from the act of playing music) in order to be a great musician.You shouldn’t have to prove it with explanations In fact, the opposite is true: There are people working in 9 to 5 jobs all day, or farming fields from dawn to dusk, who could blow us away with their talent and feeling when they play or sing.

Up until 3 and a half years ago I had spent my life working in schools. The decision to concentrate on music was a long process – and was forced also by circumstance. I was finding myself running into the same walls whenever I had a job which demanded too much structure in my life. I had 4, 5, then 6 children to take care of, and we wanted to devote our lives to this task. So…. as time went by, I decided to settle on a way of life which put the children first.

  

At the same time, the songs were coming faster and faster. I was meeting people who were encouraging me to take a step. I started playing more and more, and from that point on, it was just a question of self-belief. Self-belief is not something which comes easy to me or others, and it’s something which I have to work on everyday, but I’m beginning to understand its importance. Our lack of it is the reason why we constantly have to explain to others that we are “musicians”, NO. If you’re good at what you do, then people will feel this fact. You won’t have to prove it with words. They’ll see you play and KNOW you are simply doing what comes naturally.

Another problem in today’s world is that we believe we can get to the top without effort. We seem to believe we have the god-given right to be heard, loved and successful. Wrong. I’m currently reading the biography of Bruce Springsteen. Amazing stuff. The years this guy practised, rehearsed, studied, devoted himself to the job before he finally gets a breakthough – someone who believes in him – are a lesson for us all, in all walks of life. He had to work hard on his material, work hard on his technique, learn how to reflect – learn how to improve – for many years. Such dedication from a man who was, quite obviously, at the top of the pile from the very beginning.

It’s about authenticity. Can I take my guitar in my hands, walk onto the stage, or into the corner of the pub, and be me? My life has to be reflected in the songs, even if the audience isn’t fully aware of the meaning of the song. It has to be felt. I can be liked, or disliked. My job is to confront he people with me and my story. And if I’m good, people will be interested. People will ask for more. And professional? That is a question others have to answer. For me, the music has more – means more – when the person performing is more than just a musician. Unless they are Bruce Springsteen!

 

 

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To be on the verge of something very good

To be on the verge of something – Kurz davor, was zu tun   We’re in the last part of the recording and mixing process for the new album: “Alleingeburt“. It’s been a long process, and – during this process – we have learned countless things. Most of them had nothing to do with the […]

Re-Blog… A process ends a process begins

  Months pass and a process comes to an end which began with the Birth of L.   In that time, myself and Kilya decided to stop singing together, so we could concentrate on being parents…being together. We both came to the decision one day, in the weeks before the birth. We sat on the sofa […]

Our unassisted childbirth 17th Oct 2017 – Unsere Alleingeburt 17 Okt 2017 –

If my work and music reflects my life, then hopefully, by now, things are starting to fit into place. 8 years ago I was a teacher, married with two children. I look at the pictures from back then and consider myself “boring”. It’s clear when I look at the pictures that I’m just fulfilling a […]

This Year

This year I managed the following:

I delivered a baby at home, I bought 9 chickens, I lost 7 chickens to a fox, I went to London for a funeral, I appeared in over 30 concerts, I made 3 quite professional videos, I began recording my new album, I found a job, I quit a job, I found another job, I became a full-time musician and father, I joined a mens group, I left a mens group, I had a song of mine used for a fathers rights campaign, I stopped eating extra sugar, I lost a lot of weight, I started exercising, My eyes got a bit worse, I built a house for our tomatoes, I sang at events, I ran a Kindergarden, I recorded a single with a great singer, I found another singer, I saw the sun rise over the alps on many mornings, I travelled to Spain and France, I was informed that my two oldest children will be moving away, I cried, I screamed, I learned to understand things I couldn’t accept, I filed my tax returns, I worked in the local shop, I listened to music which inspired me, I presented my first live radio show, I got caught in the crossfire between two parties who were fighting, I spoke my honest opinion, I chopped wood, I changed nappies, I took my children to school, I banged my foot real bad, I changed guitar strings, I took a lot of stuff to the recycling centre, I drank coffee in a beautiful cafe…. and much more!

And then there were 6

I couldn’t write this on Monday when it happened. I don’t know if I can write it now, but my life is my music and therefore I feel obliged to write something. Anyone who knows me, knows me as Ben with all the children. On Monday I was informed, told that my two eldest (11,13) […]

Breakfast weekend

Breakfast is over. It began late, at 10:43 and staggered through until 11:34 consisting of rotating shifts of curious children with varying levels of abilty with a butter knife, and parents attempting to coordinate procedings. Babies on arms, babies being passed to older siblings when parents needed to spread butter or cut slices of cheese. […]

All in a day’s work

5:30 – I Wake up, it ‘s dark, freezing and gloomy outside, and inside. I Continue, pointlessly, to lie in bed. 5:41 – Daughter (12) goes down steps for shower (I hear this very clearly). Shower goes on. I think of the water we’re gonna have to pay for. 6:05 – alarm goes off – […]

The real me? The real video? The real experience?

I’ve been fascinated by other artists’ videos on the web for a long time now. I click, I watch, I consider…. There are my thoughts: I notice I’m drawn mostly towards videos which are completely live; where you get to feel the person who is singing. Where you have the feeling, what you see is […]