Week 5 – ‘Wake Up One Day’
by Frank Hamilton
On Saturday night I played a show in a strange pub somewhere near Mile End. It was cold, I couldn’t find my gloves and the gig was rubbish (lots of people talking and I was forced to plug my acoustic guitar into a Marshall amp) but I met some decent people and had a few interesting conversations…
One of them was with a chap called Ben who’d tweeted me earlier to see what time I was on. After giving me some polite abuse for not tweeting him back (I did try, it just hadn’t worked!) the conversation turned to #onesongaweek.
‘Is every Thursday actually as you say it is (a mad scramble to get everything ready for Friday)? Or are you telling porkies (and living in a world of supreme organisation behind closed doors)?’
I could answer this question with a photo of my bedroom (you can tell a lot about someone by the state of their bedroom) but I’m genuinely too embarrassed – It’s a jungle in there. The truth (the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me god) is that by now I had indeed planned to be living in a world of supreme organisation – it just hasn’t worked out. Week 5’s a good example…
I decided to spend Sunday and Monday doing chores and living in the real world (it’s been a while) before Tuesday threw up a few meetings and a writing session. The week was progressing well but I was beginning to feel like an undiagnosed narcoleptic so I put myself to bed (which was a total waste of time) and started sweating. Wednesday came and went on the couch and after my 5th Lemsip since breakfast (naughty) I finally managed to sleep for 13 hours before waking up to the realisation that I still hadn’t chosen a song for this week, let alone recorded and written about one. Fuck.
When emotions take over it can be hard to function like a normal human being (whatever that is) and we all have our own way of dealing with things. When something bad happens some of us lie in bed and cry about it, while others put on a brave face and pretend not to care. My tactic has always been to retreat from the real world, become nocturnal and get my notepad out…
This weeks song is about being in control of not being in control. You can’t always depict everything (not least your own actions in times of trouble) but you can always take a step back and be objective. You might be crying yourself to sleep every night or moping around the house until 5am but if you’re clever enough to recognise it’s all just part of the process then you’re definitely clever enough to wake up… one day.
This week I managed to find a plectrum, but insisted on persevering with the ’10p piece and loads of delay’ approach to electric guitar. The usual suspects (acoustic, keys and glock) all feature… as well as an ‘ethnic pluck’ on the choruses (John Terry might not approve, but I’ll live with that).
This morning I woke up to a text, an email AND a tweet from my favourite new stalker, Rosie Lowe (who sang on ‘Ashley’ last week). One thing led to another and she ended up singing on this weeks track – which was thrown back and forth across cyberspace until it came back with the beautiful harmonies you’re currently listening to. Amazing – thanks Rosie!
Exciting lovers and lucrative ambitions can consume you if you’re not careful. It’s all too easy to discount your friends and start placing all your eggs in one basket (we’ve all been there) but it’s something you should avoid at all costs.
“When I look back losing all my friends
It didn’t help me
And when the bubble burst again
There’s nothing there to see
But pictures on the wall
Of who I’d rather be
I’m just pacing round the hall”
Good things tend not to last forever and it’s nice to have something to fall back on (other than a portrait of Bob Dylan fixed to the wall).