Taking the leap!

Well, it's a leap year when we're supposed to take a leap into the unknown and do something we wouldn't normally do on the 29th February. I've been wanting more and more to get back into playing music, I just don't do enough of it and it's one of the things that makes my spirit soar.

Last night I spent half an hour with my iphone recording a song I've written.  I must have made ten different attempts to get a good take, but it seems if I get the voice OK the guitar is rubbish and visa versa. In the end I just had to accept that with my lack of practice there's no way I could ever get it perfect, so although it's not usually in my nature to accept second best, this time I allowed the pragmatist to rule. I wouldn't have had the confidence to do it at any other time but as it's a leap year... Long Distance Love.

It's often said that the best songs are written by unhappy people - Amy Winehouse immediately springs to mind. Though it's not always the case, it's true to say that hard times of heightened emotion are the bedrock of many good songs - Joni Mitchell's Little Green about her daughter who was adopted, or Fleetwood Mac's greatest album Rumours, a collection of fabulous songs about their troubled romantic relationships. Many of my own songs were written years ago when I had more things to work through, but what really kickstarted my songwriting recently was that someone close to me had been in a relationship that ended because of problems of distance and I found this so poignant I felt moved to write a song.

The only other time the song has had an airing at Dartington Hall
In another life I used to play in an acoustic duo called Scarlet Vardo. We played in folk clubs all over Britain and performing was second nature. We sang a mixture of our own songs, English traditional and blues and got a real buzz from playing live. I do miss it and have promised myself for years that I'd get back to music, but there's always too many other things demanding my attention, or at least that's been my excuse. Maybe by becoming a knit designer, doing lecture tours and writing books, I've sublimated my need to communicate with an audience - it sort of filled the void that music left.

One of my New Year's resolutions was to play a couple of songs at the local folk club, something I would never have thought twice about in my other life.  I still haven't done this, but after today's post, maybe I'll feel more confident.

PS Didn't realise when I wrote it but my song has got a lot to live up to -  there's another Long Distance Love by Little Feet!


  1. Hey, there you go kid ! You did it ! It will only take a few times for the old days to come back , like they were never gone. IT was that way for me. Is your old duo mate still around? Lovely tune !

  2. Sadly, the other half of the duo died some years ago, but thanks Jen, your words are very encouraging. I'm determined to get in the groove and play more now :D

  3. Love the song. Your creativity comes in many forms, music, yarn just go with your muse.

  4. Dear Jean, you are multi talented! I hope you get the opportunity to make more music. You are so good at playing the guitar too - finally I got to hear it! Thanks - from Hilde in Norway

    1. Thank you too Hilde, it's great to hear from you.

  5. Dearest Jean, sincerely hope you will make more music...this is fab.
    A Dewi Sant from N. Wales xx

    1. Thanks for listening Heike and happy St David's Day to you too!


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