Wednesday, September 22, 2021

HOMAGE TO AUTUMN

 


First day of autumn. Here in the eternally damp wilds of Tennessee it's a rain-drenched day, only 58 degrees (that's Fahrenheit, for those of you in Helsinki). An invigorating chill.

My favorite season has begun and I'm already lamenting that it will be far too brief. Autumn is a heavenly gift sandwiched between sweltering summer and eternal winter. Savor autumn while you can.

In honor of the occasion, I hastily made a video (yesterday) entitled Homage to Autumn. It was difficult piecing it together. I used a haphazard array of royalty-free video clips found on the Internet.

There was absolutely no doubt about what music I chose to use. It's the Andante from the Piano Concerto no. 2 in F major by Russian composer Dimitri Shostakovich (1906 - 1975).

Strangely enough, Shostakovich was never one of my favorite composers -  in fact I generally dislike his music.
The Andante from his second piano concerto, however, is one of my all-time favorite compositions. I think it's one of the most beautiful things ever written.
It captures the very essence of my autumnal soul:  melancholy, sentimental, nostalgic, deeply emotional.

The video is quite long - six minutes - but I doubt if it will have a lethal effect on its viewers. I created it to (hopefully) capture the soul of autumn.

If you dare to watch it, please view it on full-screen.

Welcome to autumn!     Cheers, Jon

 

Here's a photo of Shostakovich with his cat


 

Sunday, September 19, 2021

AUTUMN OF ESCAPE

 


 Got an official email from YouTube. I was informed that they are restricting one of my videos because it contains risque material.

Strange, I thought, considering this social media platform allows videos that regurgitate the "F" word two hundred times in three minutes.

My YouTube videos are pure and clean as the wind-driven winter snow. Your grandchildren could view them with no possibility of corruption. Almost.

Then - - suddenly - - I remembered Night Song, a video I made about ten years ago with no thought of restrictions.

I always loved the song When the Smoke is Going Down by the Scorpions. It harbors the  lure and delicious intoxication of
the midnight hours.
And it perfectly exemplifies all the wild Hollywood nights that I reveled in during my reckless youth.

Hence, my video.
I made Night Songs as a glimpse into the hardcore underground lifestyle I once knew. It is a personal favorite of my video creations because it captures my soul - although in retrospect I would have probably changed some things and made the video differently today. It's definitely not perfect.

So, with the resurrection of Night Song I am thinking of that long ago autumn when I was nineteen, when I broke free and went to Hollywood -
when I immersed myself in a dark lifestyle that was in complete contrast to my real self.

I've told this story many times before:

when I had a final horrifying physical blowup with my father, when he choked me into unconsciousness and knocked me through a plate glass door.....
When my rage was so great that I planned to kill him. Got his gun, sneaked into his bedroom at night, aimed......but didn't have the courage to go through with it.

Was I a coward? Or was I mercifully rational?

It was September. I was so physically ravaged that it took weeks for my wounds to start healing. I managed to leave at the beginning of October.
Got a one-room ratty studio apartment in Anaheim for twenty-seven bucks a week - then quickly migrated to Hollywood.

It was scary, tough, unusual at first. I was a naive, sheltered sissy. But I quickly metamorphosed into an alarming alter ego.

Soon I was immersed in the allure of booze, drugs, endless endless sexual encounters.

I'm not proud of that lifestyle, yet - strangely - I don't regret it. I'm glad I indulged and came out alive. I experienced things that others have only seen in their fantasies.....and nightmares.

The sense of freedom was exhilarating.

I can still see myself walking the nearly-deserted Hollywood streets at 2:00 a.m.
A slight autumn chill, a light mist, the lazy October moon sinking in the west.

I wore a Billy Jack hat, a Kennington shirt, Levis, and Kit Carson boots. I kept a switchblade down the side of my right boot, a flask of whiskey in my coat pocket. A stash of Quaaludes (and other stuff) in another pocket.

I was a midnight illusion, a pale phantom sifting through secret realms of adventure and danger in the lonesome shadows......



My video can no longer be seen on my blog, but you can watch it on YouTube

click the link below...or visit my channel Jayveesonata