This Is The Sound That I Make

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“This is the sound that I make
These are the words I chose
Sometimes the right thing to say
Just won’t come out” -Matchbox 20

It’s been a while since I posted. I’m not doing well and, even when I have lots to say, it can be too much for me to get over here and write it. And, then, sometimes, when I do, it feels like I’m just listening to the sound of my own voice. And, while I’ve been known to like the sound of my own voice singing, listening to my brokenness sans music can drag me further into a dark place where I am more lonely, more wretched, more pathetic. So, I go long periods without blogging about how and where I am.

I’ve withdrawn, with the exception of going to the Acoustic Club regularly to perform. Music is a drive that won’t relent, me being ill or not. And, at least now I have a place that appreciates not only my voice, but my songs as well. All my original stuff has been well received, and that is an exquisiteness. A delight.

But, yes, I’m struggling…to stay out of bed, to feel anything other than desperation and despair. And, struggling for words to express it all…well, that can just be overwhelming on top of already being overwhelmed. And, yet…here I am…saying something, and nothing at all.

I don’t have access to my proper recording equipment and software at the moment (and, there’s no telling when, or if, I will again) so this morning I simply recorded this cover of Matchbox 20’s song on my phone, using the Soundcloud app. I leave you with it, in the hopes that anyone listening other than myself will hear in it whatever it is I’m trying to say.

 

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Little Improvement

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But, improvement is still improvement even if it is only little. I should be pleased with my progress so far, and not beat myself up for the slow going nature of said progress.

I’m speaking of my accent, of course. If you’ve been following my recent posts you will have read of my obsession to rid myself of my native American accent, and replacing it with the tone of my residence. Living in the UK for over a decade now, I had hoped – assumed – that my accent would naturally soften and, by osmosis, I would gradually, but surely, lose the harsh American sound to my speaking voice. Like in so many other things, I’ve been woefully disappointed. After so many years with so little softening, I’ve come to the conclusion that hard work and retraining is the only way to get what I want. But, hard work is what it is. Very hard work.

I have undertaken elocution exercises. And, I am finding, like all physical exercise, it causes me a great deal of pain. My whole head aches with the effort.

Today, after the school run, I decided I would record some of this baby step yet painful progress, with the idea to share it here. I went to the computer…

I haven’t recorded anything since we got a new computer and everything was different. My recording software, the operating system. Different now. I’ve been avoiding recording anything lately because… well, I didn’t have anything desperately pressing on me to record (people still aren’t beating down my door for my music), but more because of the changes to what I was used to and could use well.

The new computer was given to us…and, I’m not ungrateful…but, it hadn’t really been given with helping me out in mind, but more for my husband and the children. Granted our old one was on its last circuity legs, but I was on firm footing with it and it was only that familiarity that allowed me to use it to record two albums and all my singles. It was a crap piece of machinery, but I did do true wonders with it.

So, school run done, I approached the new with trepidation, and…

Autism reared its head and I found myself unable to navigate the changes.

Frustrated and in tears, I walked away from the strange and hostile hardware and software. Talk about your technical difficulties.

Now, I have a voice recorder on my phone, but I can’t, for whatever reason, upload what I record there. I can share it via whatsapp message, but it won’t go anywhere else.

I resorted to downloading the soundcloud app on my phone, so I could use my existing soundcloud account.

After several attempts at getting it right, the above recording is what I settled with sharing here.

What I recorded yesterday, on my phone voice recorder, sounds better…truer. But, this is what I could manage today. It’s one of Shakespeare’s sonnets, and one that particularly resonates with me.

Shakespeare is a benchmark, a starting point. The language and rhythm is helpful to mastering the necessary cadence. I know, I’m far from mastering anything here. And, there I go, beat beat beat, smash, hate myself for…

all my inability.

Can I go to bed now, wretched world?  No. Now, it’s nearly time to pick the kids back up from school.

I’ve wasted a whole day. My God, how miserable.

But, even pain sounds better in an English accent. Too bad my pain is simply and acutely painful and doesn’t yet – and might never – have that “better” thing going for it.

I leave you with the Bard and my imperfect voicing of his brilliant words.