Everyone keeps something in their back pocket. But some of us keep it there for a little longer than we had planned. For many years and in search of stability, I focused on my career and personal life around the art of building things on others’ terms. Yet in 2019 after a graduation, a long-term breakup, three moves, a new job, and significantly more free time, all of life’s signs pointed to reclaiming my music as my own, “taking it out of the back pocket”, so to speak. In doing so, I realized how damning it was as a woman to de-identify with my role as a creator by not realizing my own voice. For years, I had unwittingly subjugated my creativity, and had not noticed until now.
This rekindling of music has been the gift that keeps on giving. But there are always twists and turns in life, and 2020 brought its fair share of challenges for everyone. To release a breakup album this year may seem ill-timed. Right now, the world’s pain is especially severe, and it may get worse. A single breakup is no match for a pandemic, and pales in comparison to the overdue advancement of civil rights for the systemically oppressed.
Pain comes in many forms, and is a sensation we share as humans. It can throb deeply for a lifetime, make you sharply cry out in a moment, or it is barely noticeable. And beneath the layers of our collective pain as a society, there is a similar story: our own individual pain, or the pain of those we love, drives us to act. We navigate a wandering heart, deliberate a choice, negotiate a fight, or capture an idea all in preparation for the next action we need to make.
For a long time, I thought my pain was not important. A breakup helped me realize that by ignoring my pain, I also ignored my needs and the steps I needed to take. I hope that the music I make moves anyone to take action towards creating a life lived on their own terms.
Stay tuned for AWELLIA’s debut album released at the end of 2020.