Ben Winch

writer / rocker

Change of Place, Change of Paradigm

If music doesn’t sell I’ll sell myself

June 30th 2017

Slight change of paradigm, since my family and I left Australia in April. Maybe the exercise of packing everything and piling it in a storage shed had a wider resonance. Since then I’ve drawn a line through things. I’ve stripped back my concerns – I don’t have a guitar, an audio interface, a microphone. Don’t have a bunch of manuscripts in a box either. What I have, for the most part, is my notebooks, and a flood of feelings, ideas, observations. At the same time, just before leaving Byron Shire, I told myself I would “give up” journal-writing. It takes so much time and creative energy – energy which I could be using for more extroverted projects – and besides, do I really want another pile of notebooks, which would have to be shipped home to Australia?

But a funny thing happened here in London (my home-base, for now, amid frequent side-trips): I found a compromise. Give up journalling? Sure: I don’t write a journal, I write a blog – Hand Drawn Heart – the idea being that everything I write I publish. A public journal, maybe, but since it’s public it’s more than a journal.

Hand Drawn Heart

  • “Pen vs Keyboard”
    The pen is mightier than the sword, but than the keyboard?
  • “Isolation”
    I’m 43, and I’m waiting to be born.
  • “Hunger”
    I thought of Knut Hamsun when I stumbled into Old Street Studios.
  • “Shame”
    I don’t know if I’ll ever be genuinely proud to be Australian.

Of course there’s more – I’ve got 15 posts handwritten waiting for me to type them up. I can’t stop! It brings a new dimension to my thought-process when I sit down to write in the mornings. I’d been craving a forum to discuss the creative process, and how it conflicts with practical concerns, and with family, and – who knows? – with well-being. Hand Drawn Heart, then, is a crucible, in which I seek to apprehend my creative destiny. Or so I tell myself. Sometimes I think it’s only a justification to sit and drink coffee.

Meanwhile I’ve ramped up my reviewing again, after a hiatus while I was recording…

Book reviews

Music reviews

Oh, and my first release as Light Traveller, Same Stars Shine, is almost done. I got it mastered by Jerry Kandiah (engineer, Gang of Four / Killing Joke) at Old Street Studios during my second week in London. Cover-design and promotion are in the works.

The “new paradigm”, then? Pragmatic. To have done all this work – two years recording Light Traveller – and then consign it to oblivion?! Somehow I need to engage people, make them listen, let ’em know I’m for real. If music doesn’t sell then I’ll sell myself. I’ve been doing this – writing / rocking – for 25 years now. You can bet I’m not backing down.

Somewhere over Lapland

Somewhere over Lapland on the way to London

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