I Will Sleep

November 8, 2009

Track 2. The only one with drums. I’d meant for this to be a wholly acoustic percussion-less record, but I can’t seem to let go of the drifting guitars, the need to pin down the beat on occasion, the urge to go epic. Oh well, too much Cecil B DeMille as a child?
The music was written as the record neared completion. One of those rare times when I sat at the piano and it sort of jumped out, as if from above. I had about three tunes that came relatively easily in the same week, but the others have not gone on to the record as I ended up not rating them. As ever I’ll let them fester a while – sometimes they just need a bit of room to grow.

Lyrically, I Will Sleep owes a debt to Walt Whitman’s poem When I Heard at the Close of Day. Deeply romantic. We had it read at our civil partnership ceremony this year. I’ve quoted it to earlier temporary lovers when lost in the initial stages of rapture, only to cringe later at my gushing. The lyric is an update, and I guess a way for me to put into words the strength of feeling I have for my partner. Songs don’t often reference same-sex couplings in the way I would want – so of course I go and do it for myself. Ourselves. Again, far too gushing, something I’ve been guilty of before – Gorgeous Love, 58th Star, In a Cave. But I’d rather be in earnest than hidden in glacial cool.

Cellos are played by the remarkable Semay Wu – please check out her own music at the link. She has a fearlessness of her instrument that is inspiring. I probably got her to play a bit too trad – she’d have preferred a bit more avant garde I suspect. David McAlmont provided the backing vocals, and insisted I turn them down as he felt they brought too much attention to his voice. I did what he said, but in retrospect I think I would have had them louder as they are something wonderful. As for the drums – just an old loop or two squelched through effects. I did try a squalling guitar over the end but it added little energy or grace.


3 Responses to “I Will Sleep”

  1. toe Says:

    Patrick, the signed copy arrived on Friday & its not been far from my player since (only skipping to put The Glare back on).

    Thanx for a beautiful record.

  2. bcarney Says:

    This song may be the most beautiful thing I have heard in ages…perhaps ever. Blissfully wonderful.

    • stephenhero Says:

      Ever? Bless you Bill. All I’m going to do is blush and point you in the direction of the slow movement of Mahler’s 5th – the bit that was used over and over again in Death in Venice. Now that is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever heard.

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