POWER OF POP MUSIC KEVIN MATHEWS COMPOSER : SONG STORIES – BE

KEVIN MATHEWS COMPOSER : SONG STORIES – BE

This post will intersect amongst several of the concerns I seek to cover over here at the Power of Pop reboot. It’s about Music, Songwriting and Personal Well-being — all important issues to me in this time of coronavirus. So I need to keep these objectives in mind even as I write this.

Since 2010, I have lived through tumultuous life-changing experiences : I have buried both parents, welcomed grand-children, have effectively returned to singlehood and escaped the rat race to brave the uncertain existence of a freelancer. But these are all external circumstances that have shaped a more significant change inside.

All my life – as far as I can remember – I have lived with anxiety. A daily fear that at its most extreme cripples me from living life to its fullest. I find myself either living in the past – feeling the pain of the past OR living in the future – being afraid of worst-case scenarios which may or may not happen.

Thus, I am seldom living in the here and now – the present – and am unable to appreciate and enjoy the only reality that I actually have. Until… that is, I became self-aware of my disorder and began to change my thinking to manage my anxieties. The experiences of the last decade have forced me to reboot my way of thinking or be cursed to follow a downward spiral to an inevitable self-destruction.

Which brings me to “Be” – the lyrics of which encapsulates much of my new thinking. The chorus goes — 

‘Let go of your fear, never be, never be
Embrace the moment, simply be, simply be.’

Or in other words, stop being sad and afraid and live in the moment. Of course, that’s easier said than done but it’s an aspiration, a mantra to emulate.

The song is written for guitar on a Drop-D tuning, where the first and last strings of the guitar are tuned down to D from E. This results in a tuning of D-A-D-G-B-D and a droning timbre that fits the concept of anxiety as described in verse 2 —

‘The drone in your head won’t ever stop/Anxiety is a constant throb’

Which is an illustration of the reality of anxiety – the negative thoughts are always running through my mind whenever encountering new stimuli, the trick is for positive self-talk to counter-act the negativity.

‘Frantic searches and the problem solving/You hope and pray to find the meaning/You try to belong, you can’t hold on/Don’t ever play along.’

The best solution? Don’t play anxiety’s self-loathing game – opt out and just be.