I lost my mojo. I don’t know where. I don’t know when. But one day I woke and realised it was gone. And not just any old mojo: my creative mojo. My blogging mojo was bad enough, but worst of all, I realised I had lost my musical mojo.
There was a time that it was unthinkable for me to spend a weekend without picking up my guitar and trying to write a song. Suddenly I found years had gone by without me so much recording a single line. Oh sure I’d pick up the guitar from time to time and sing to myself, but apart from what got stuck in that giant tape recorder called the human brain, by the time I put down my instrument there would be no trace that I ever had an idea. I left no mark.
Then I noticed something else. I had no enthusiasm for listening to music. I searched my music collection, I searched iTunes, I searched internet radio in the hope of rediscovering the music I loved many moons ago. But when I found it I was mostly let down or was soon bored. This is a kind of emotional death I never faced before. To paraphrase Samuel Johnson, when a man is tired of music, perhaps he is tired of life.
Then a few months ago a friend tweeted the name of a new artist to me and I heard for the first time something that made me believe that, despite the dross on TV and the so-called talent shows that seek out the most marketable product with the lowest common denominator of appeal, there was after all hope of finding music that was vital, alive and and life enhancing. My saviour? A 19-year old who has been called the council estate Dylan: Jake Bugg.
A few weeks after this discover I browsed without much hope through the recommendations of Deezer. I hit play on a track by a woman with a distinctive appearance to find she had an equally distinctive voice with which she sang a beautiful song. It was “Father Father” by Laura Mvula.
Finally, today, I trusted in another recommendation and was rewarded with an album so full of musical and lyrical talent as to take my breath away. The opening track alone – Things that Stop You Dreaming – contained some of the best lyrics I have heard in years. The album was “All the Little Lights” by Passenger.
And with these new voices I feel perhaps I may yet rediscover my own voice. But even if I publish nothing for weeks, months, who know how long… at least my faith in music is somewhat restored. And with it, I feel, my musical mojo.