During my second journey to Pokhara in 2016, I decided to give my songs to people as a way to something back and share my music with local people & those I met along the way.
It was my second journey to the Nepal and when I returned to the country it was like stepping into the future whilst feeling like I was living in the past.
In their own calendar the year was 2073 though in so many ways life was and still is today, somewhat more traditional & like one of those old movies you watch where people lived a simple lifestyle. I fully enjoyed a laid back pace of things and all the pleasures of being in such close connection with the animals, community & the local families. The mountain air was fresh and the sun shone through so strongly even as the monsoon rain waters came down.
In a place where the culture is colourful, rich and varied; life is often devoted to praise and the many festivals for the Gods & Goddess’s. The sounds of bells and the collective morning chorus of the people of the villages singing beautiful songs rings through the valley reverberating from the hills. The views are stunning and the energy you feel reminds you of the awesome power of nature in this part of the planet that was created long ago by the shifting tectonic plates.
The region was struck by mighty earthquakes that year and many lost their lives by the destructive force of change. There was much rebuilding work during my visit and many travellers helped to build new homes and schools using ‘Earthbags’ which were made from soil to withstand any further tremors.
Teams of visitors who felt moved by what they saw in the area arranged various music and art events, all the proceeds raised were put into planting tree’s to protect some areas from land-slides. Although the people in the outer villages who have little or no possibilities to generate money and get very little help from their government still suffered, they continued to live in damaged houses barely surviving and living well below the poverty line.
It made me appreciate again just how wonderful it felt to be really present in life, it is often at times of great crisis when you really understand that everything you have can be gone in a second and you truly start to see the value in all the little things in this world more than ever. It was clear upon my first arrival in Nepal that these people already had that knowledge and lived according to their means, smiling even in the face of despair and being exceedingly caring hosts; sharing even their most meagre amounts of food and their homes with each other & strangers alike.
I wanted to give support in the best way that I could, due to time and visa restrictions I could not join the tree planting team however I could do something from my heart and through my music; I could gift songs to lift others when they need it the most.
I had recorded some of my songs in studios and had mp3 versions to share with people, the list included ‘Keep Climbing’ which was the first version of one of my songs that I had composed in Pokhara in 2012 during my first journey to Nepal whilst cycling back to my guesthouse through the inspirational mountain region of Pokhara after visiting Devi Falls & the Gupteshwor Mahadev cave with a friend.
The song, a powerful motivator, was about heading on up through life’s paths and reaching for the top. It had been recorded two years later in India with guitarist and friend Joe Ferrao and was now available to listen to online & given to people for free as a demonstration of the songs within me that I wanted the whole world to hear one day.
I had healed myself whilst in Nepal during both journeys, coming to the country after times of personal upsets and dramatic life changes, I had found solace in those mountains. I had met special beings who had offered me wisdom and friendship, often giving me more than they knew simply with the words they spoke or kindness that they showed me. The temples had been places of worship for them and for the ceremonies I had been invited to attend had given me a sense of peace which gave me the strength I needed to focus on my future, to find a way to see the new directions that I could take and to keep going forward in my life when it seemed the most challenging thing to do.
I had watched as the lights from the homes around the waters edge became ‘coloured shadows on the lake’ that were ‘reflected in the sky by stars’ and I had gone ‘up to a place where the track was steep & down inside a cave where the waters flowed deep’ and I had found that here in these places the world looked different, fresh and wonderful to me again.
I had hiked up to the World Peace Stupa with my Nepalese soul sister Sun Nita and later up to Sarangkot with Ruth Soderstrom, our taxi driver & porter and then again a second time with a few other new friends; each time I played my songs from my phone as we reached the top of the stunning places.
I went back to Devi’s Fall and got right down inside the cave with the Shiva temple inside with a few friends Kirst Campbell, Lea Grange, Bernard Grange & Andres Acuna, and played the song to them which delighted them all because we were actually in the amazing place that had inspired some of the lyrics.
Most people didn’t have computers or mobile phones to store or listen to my songs with, so I shared them in any way that I could. I gave them to cafe owners so that they would be played often and reach as many people as possible, I played them to people & I gave them to those who could store them on a device.
I sat on the lake at the Himalayan Café with the owner and his guests, sharing this song and two others that I had produced ‘LMTD’(Dreamin’) & the first demo recording of ‘Things To Smile About’ that I had made that year in India.
Everyone who heard the songs said how much they meant to them, asking if they could play them for their friends and families; for me it was the biggest reward that I could receive. The more people that could feel empowered, uplifted and happy just by listening to my songs; the better.
I was so inspired by my journey, my experiences and the positive response to my music during that season that I also created completely new songs, one of the songs I made ‘on the spot’ whilst performing one evening in the Friendship Café with Gencay Mut and other talented artists at a Live Jam Session.
Because my laptop would not connect properly to the sound system, I was unable to use the backing tracks for my own songs so I immersed myself in the sound of the beats of the musicians drums as they filled the room, drawing out a new vibration that flowed through me.
I began to sing about my healing and how I was feeling now, this is how the first rendition of my song ‘Powerhouse’ came to life. It’s all about realising that you have the power deep within to conquer a kind of darkness that we can all experience at certain times in our lives, allowing you to ‘see that the light as it’s shinning out of your soul’ which helps lead the way for yourself and also for others.
At a venue called Silk Road, I sang my songs at a live music event with Sunny Thapa, we sang cover versions of songs we both liked without any practice beforehand and created two songs of our own as we were ‘in the moment’ as the feeling was right. I was loving every minute of life in the now and it was one of those times when the music, text and melodies just kept on coming.
I continued to share my songs, giving them to various cafes and venues in Pokhara so that my music would be heard in the very place it was composed in. It felt very meaningful to me and I know that it meant a lot to everyone who listened, knowing that I had been so inspired by the incredible land called Nepal.
I later finished composing the song, co-created new music and recorded ‘Powerhouse’ in a small studio in Vienna. I also recorded a pop version of ‘Climbing’ with the same producer and later released both songs myself from my home office/studio.
Official lyric videos were made and are available to watch on YouTube and have helped people to feel empowered to keep going strong when they have been going through a difficult time. The video for ‘Climbing’ was released in January 2021 to support people through all the changes in life since the worldwide lockdowns.
I keep on making music, singing and having creative power surges even now when things seem a little crazy in the world or in life in general. I often find that I am most inspired when things are challenging or equally when they are so beautiful that I want to put it all into a song.
Music is one of the ways that I keep on moving upwards, it helps me to sing my way to the top of the highest mountain or that seemingly impassable block in the road. It gives strength, and that floating feeling you get when you find yourself so deep within the music and surrounded by the sound that you feel as though you are on a flying or lying on a cloud.
I share my music on streaming platforms, there are various videos on YouTube, I have made many Live Concerts for free on my Social Media channels, you can watch the replays in the video sections & you can get my songs here in the Music section of the website.
I am constantly reminded of those people who have in their own way supported me during my musical and healing life journey – thank you to everyone for all the guidance, comments and compliments.
If I am to leave something here when I have transcended my earthly body and travelled into Cosmic Heaven, it will be the energy that has shaped my soul and helped me to go further than at times I imagined that I possibly could.
May the music heal your heart, uplift your spirit and support your growth for many years to come <3