Song #51: La Pele


"Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent." [Victor Hugo]

Having covered a wide spectrum of genres and textures in "One Love, One Year," as I begin to bring it to a close I find there are still infinite ways that music can speak to us about love. Sometimes - maybe many times - raw, composed, instrumental music can express depths that lyrics and sung words cannot quite reach.

This week I dusted off a classical piano piece that I spent many, many hours composing years ago and finished it up to incorporate into this project. As with anything of this nature, it is open to a variety of interpretations, but to me this piece speaks to love as a sort of violent, yet sweetly playful tussle -- often oscillating between order and chaos, majesty and misery, clarity and confusion.

"The inexpressible depth of music, so easy to understand and yet so inexplicable, is due to the fact that it reproduces all the emotions of our innermost being..." [Oliver Sacks]


Song #50: Deranged

"Thou art to me a delicious torment." ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Most people think of love as full of light, joy and positivity. But there is a darker side, that of obsession, craving, intense desire and even torment. Not that those are "bad" things; they are in fact quite delicious... a "burning, yearning devotion" that is felt very deeply.

I don't know whether my mind was subconsciously picking up on all the spooky vibes this time of year or whether it's a cool coincidence, but the fact that Halloween is this week makes this song's lyrics and musical vibe timely and appropriate. Happy Halloween, y'all. I don't have any candy but here's a song for you...



i am affected, call it wrecked, kid

i am obsessively, madly out of my he-ead

i'm goin' crazy, the way she slays me

i'd make u jealous if I told you how she plays me

it keeps building and building and building up,

and now the volcano's about to erupt

bewitching; she's got me wishing

for an end to all the love spells that she's dishing


what sort of cosmic commotion did i make to deserve this

(that) even when she's gone i am haunted by her ghost?

a boon to give my life back; resurrect my heart

she's a goddess or a demon and either way i'm toast


i'm not superstitious but the jist is

she is enchanting and magically delicious

where did she come from? man I don't know

maybe above... maybe below...

i'm unhinged, unzipped, unbalanced, unglued,

she drives a brother batty and I think that I'm screwed

but i like it, i'll take the pain,

even if i end up quite deranged

Song #45: Fireball

I knew that I had come face to face with someone whose mere personality was so fascinating that, if I allowed it to do so, it would absorb my whole nature, my whole soul, my very art itself.
[Oscar Wilde]



There are thousands of beautiful girls, thousands of shallow pools,

but with her it's different, with her - she's endlessly cool

I think about her all of the time, I recognize the worth in her eyes

And each time we connect we go deeper than we thought we could


She's a fireball, a tempest storm, but I won't quit, no

'Cause I am up for the challenge, gonna show her I can handle it

So let's go, let's go


I had started to lose faith in the world,

didn't think that it made this kind of girl

But then she came out of nowhere and changed up all of the rules

It is gonna take a strong kind of man,

To stand firm while she does her dance

And while others couldn't make it, I am gonna prove that I can


She's a fireball, a tempest storm, but I won't quit, no

'Cause I am up for the challenge, gonna show her I can handle it

So let's go, let's go


I'm longing

to know her heart, to love her flaws,

to touch her body, to shatter her walls

I am all the way in, I won't flinch,

she's worth the fight, she's worth my time,

when you're given a gift, you treat it right


She's a fireball, a tempest storm, but I won't quit, no

'Cause I am up for the challenge, gonna show her I can handle it

So let's go, what are we waiting for?

Song #40: (Stay In Your) Embrace


"Millions and millions of years would still not give me half enough time to describe that tiny instant of all eternity when you put your arms around me and I put my arms around you."

[Jacques Prévert, poet/screenwriter]

As Mr. Prévert says, there is nothing quite like the closeness and intimacy found in lingering in timeless, affectionate embraces. Still, at some point you've gotta get up and get back to living. This song suggests the romantic notion that even though apart, you're still held in that person's embrace.

The lyrics this week were co-written by writer/actor/artist (and good friend) Benjamin Madrid, whose poem (Stay In Your Embrace) provided the inspiration - and many of the lines - for this song.

Musically this track is a throw-back to the 80's radio pop ballads that many of us grew up with (a la Genesis / Phil Collins / Peter Gabriel). It just might transport you back to 1986 if you're not careful...



Sometimes in your embrace

I leave my body and walk outside,

Peer in the window, watch us lying face to face

Faded lines remain where the tears have dried


I could take that scene anywhere

The room could change all over

the outside of it too

Another house, another city, it doesn't matter, there's you

The distances between are only lies


Let's get to dancing

We can't always lay around

But now that I know what I have found

I'll walk the wire and not look down

As long as I can still

Stay in your embrace


We can let the aging take it's toll

Watch my hair turn grey, I'll watch your skin turn old

Another time, another setting, it doesn't matter I'm told

When you're hanging on so tight you can't let go

Song #36: Bliss (You Take Me There)


Love has the capability of taking us - or rather opening us - further than we could ever hope to go on our own.



There's a bliss that most will never know

There's a depth that most will never go

There's a place for which the angels groan

Now I know, I know

You take me there

There's a touch, makes me glad to be alive

There's a path into the heart of God

There's a taste thick like the richest spice

Now I know, I know

You take me there

Going deeper, pure surrender

Going deeper, pure surrender

You take me there

Song #30: Unbound

"There are two kinds of strengths: the strength to lead, and the strength to follow; the strength to control, and the strength yield. There are two kinds of power: the power to strip away another's soul bare, and the power to stand naked." [Yaldah Tovah]


Her hand pierces the atmosphere

Her body's below the ground

Screaming and kicking for some air

No one hears a sound

An angel appears before her there

And pins her to the ground

Screaming and kicking for some air

The earth's at last unbound


Follow my hand, I will lead you

Put you in the places I need to

To know you even better than you do


Birds and planes falling from the air

She's taken by the force

A sharp surrender, a fist of hair

She trusts a little more

Drinking deep from the cup of life

A kiss becomes a vow

We know the edge but we walk the line

All time melts into now

Song #28: Strange Love

“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes "Awww!” [Jack Kerouac]

It's been said that the opposite of fear is love. And though it's human nature to make the majority of life decisions based (subtly) on fear, I've been lucky enough to know a handful of people who have chosen to live a life that is moved more by the power of love. These are the unique ones: those who march to a different drummer, those who swim against the current and who make their own way. We find ourselves attracted to these people because they do what most are afraid to do: buck convention and make the choice to live freely from passion, or a deep love for life, rather than from conditioning.

This is a strange, unusual little song for those who need the encouragement to live out of that kind of strange, unusual love.



There's something in the way that we move

Something in the things that we choose

Like how we live as if there's nothing left to lose

That stirs them up inside


There's something in the way that we live

Something in the way that we give

The way we turned our backs and took our own path

That gives them hope for life


So let the haters be hatin'

This is the road that we're takin

It's not the path they created

Like hell, we just made it

like cheese we be gratin'

On all the nerves of the straight

But don't be jealous or fake it 

We just used what we're made of


Watch us rock the stage we give everything we've got

We are everything you want, we are everything they're not

What are you afraid of? Would you like to join us?

So stand up make it known just what it is that you want

All we have is yours and all we have is fun

Then bury all that old stuff; come on now and join us

Those living with a strange love

Song #26: I'm Ready


There's a lot going on in this song, but to me the essence of "I'm Ready" speaks to knowing that something isn't quite right but still being drawn to it. It's about making your bed in the confusion... the lure of the forbidden... the play between resistance and secretly longing to have your self-protective walls blasted through.

I was privileged this week to have worked with a cowriter - Orlando, FL artist, painter, model, yogini and all around beautiful soul Julie Sandifer, who penned these lyrics and helped in the creative process. Julie infuses wisdom and passion into all of her art, which is made obvious in these powerful words.  If you would like to see more of Julie's work, click to visit her blog or paintings.



so here I am again. ready. I think I'm ready.

who ever said that love was supposed to be so pure and healthy?

there's love in the chaos; love in the greedy need

how do we forget the past when the memories are so deep?

some hearts open slowly

mine is open freely

but it shuts quickly


I invite you in. you don't want me. you want in.

I can't want you  - what is this?

  simple it is not. fearless it is not. intense it is.


so here I am again. ready. I think I'm ready

turn me on. turn it off. i need both.

earthy, lusty,  - more more more

stay close. encourage me to let go. my heart is full.

dedicated and all is love

somethings are not meant to be figured out, right love?

so tell me; I want you to tell me


I invite you in. you don't want me. you want in.

I can't want you  - what is this?

  simple it is not. fearless it is not. intense it is.


no symmetry, lovesick lover

be worthy. try harder.

you can't go wrong.

do more more more -


I invite you in. you don't want me. you want in.

I can't want you  - what is this? 

simple it is not. fearless it is not. intense it is.


so here I am again. ready. I think I'm ready.

I hope I never have to say goodbye.