Greetings and happy early Winter to all of you! I hope this time of deepening darkness finds you all in good health and spirits and getting ready for the descent into the depths of Winter, whatever that entails for you personally. I feel very blessed to be settling into my warm, cozy and light-filled newest home in Northern New Mexico. I sense that the upcoming months will be a time of much inner integration and creativity for me and I am excited to give myself lots of rest and good me-time. I welcome the inward focus of Winter and the fruitfulness that can come from sinking deeply into the nourishment of our roots.
Today, I am excited share with you a new song and music video, my first new work in nearly a year and a half! It is titled “Lo Mío” (“What Is Mine”). It is a collaboration between myself and the track's producer, Nathan Scott of Deep Note Productions (Indianapolis, IN), who composed the beat and also mixed and mastered the song. I recorded it back in the springtime but I didn't want to release it until I had made a music video. In August, I teamed up with rapper and video producer Gigglez of Albuquerque, NM to shoot and produce the video. Several friends graced the shoot with their beautiful, authentic presence- and the beauty of authenticity is what is song is all about! It took a few months for me to be ready to release it because, as always, I had to wait for the right time. I had to make it through my move to my new home and until I started to feel grounded and clear in my new surroundings- and this process always takes longer than my rational mind initially conceives.
The music video is available on YouTube here. The song is bilingual (English/Spanish). Click on the Closed Captioning button for subtitles (and the settings button immediately to the right of it to toggle between English and Spanish). Full lyrics in both languages are available here.
This song is, among other things, a celebration of feminine power, of sensuality, of playfulness, and of women as we truly are. With this song, I am taking back what is mine from the forces of patriarchy. It's our world, our body, our sacred terrain that we open to sharing in intimate relationships on our terms. We all have the right to feel good and this means having our boundaries of trust and safety, however they look and feel to us. I release this song with the prayer that women, men and people of all genders will find in it inspiration to seek and express their own empowerment, both in the world at large and in the sacred zone of intimacy, where it is “el desafío más chingón” (the hardest challenge), as I say in the lyrics.
I, like many women, learned at an early age that I had to subvert my power and silence my authentic voice in order to be accepted. I became an expert at playing the “good girl” at the price of connection to the fullness of my own being. I disassociated and played nice. Like many young women, I swallowed many “No's” over the years behind the gag of shame. Those who know me well can attest to the fact that relating healthily has been one of my greatest struggles. I've had a very hard time trusting people enough to let myself be vulnerable in relationships. I've worked extremely hard to get to a place where I feel I am even worthy of close, honest, and loving relationships with safe people- but I've gotten there, and I know that I am indeed worthy. This song represents a point of departure for me. As I say in the song, “Es mi canto de liberación” (“It's my song of liberation”). I'm finally leaving the cages behind and stepping forward proudly into who I truly am: a strong, independent, creative woman with the right to be myself, including my sexual self. I feel that the next level of my work is going to be powerful. This is just the beginning.
During this season, we are confronted with the reality of death. We are reminded that that death is an inextricable part of the cycle of life and renewal. At this time, I welcome the transformation of the parts of me that no longer serve my higher purpose. If this requires a death of sorts, so be it. I know I am strong enough to make it through whatever inner work is waiting for me in the depths of Winter. I welcome transformation- even as this always much easier said than done.
During this time of Samhain and el Día de los Muertos, we remember our loved ones on the other side whom we long to be able to touch and feel and talk to, even if just for a minute. We think of the hundreds of generations of ancestors before us upon whose shoulders we are standing. We are reminded that our life is the gift they've given us through their very best efforts to pass on and protect life under all kinds of sometimes very dire circumstances. We are here because of their love. It is their blood running through our veins and we are grateful. We accept with grace and courage the pain that runs in our blood, inextricably connected to the love we feel for our people. We commit to doing whatever it takes to heal the wounds in our lineage, knowing that our efforts can and truly do bring healing to our ancestors.
At this time I think about my ancestors, my European and Jewish ancestors who lived for hundreds upon hundreds of years under tyrannical regimes whose brutal Inquisitions punished any whisper of indigenous or non-Christian spirituality, feminine power or joyful sexuality with horrific violence. I sense that the fear and shame surrounding my true authentic human nature and sexuality are rooted in the “Christianity” that half of my ancestors were violently forced to adopt or else. No wonder it's scary to let my guards down when doing so would have gotten my ancestors burned alive! No wonder parts of me are deathly afraid to let myself be a strong and outspoken woman in the world!
And with this “Christianity as tool of conquest” at the bedrock of colonial culture, it's no wonder that we live in a world where shame, fear and sexual distortion are so pervasive. We're all carrying the legacy of colonial trauma, though the specifics of when and how our ancestors were brutalized differ, and our lived experiences as people of different backgrounds and varying degrees of racial and social privilege of course differ greatly.
My prayer is that this song contributes to the freeing of shakti in the world and that it may inspire healing. And I pray that at least one of my grandmas- on my Jewish side or on my European side, I love them all beyond words- may hear me rapping this song down here and say to my grandpa, “Hey! Listen to what our little one is singing down there! That is good!” And that they may get up and start moving and grooving in a way that would have probably gotten them into serious trouble, and that they may do so with no fear or shame or embarrassment. And that if that dance gets real juicy and ends up in the bedroom, that it may be a mind-blowing, loving, incredibly beautiful time for them both.
So be it! Mitakuye oyasin! Amen!
I wish you all a deep and fruitful descent into the darkness of the season. As always, I welcome feedback, questions, and dialogue of all kinds. If you'd like me to present this video at your school or organization, let's talk! I offer discussions, performances and workshops tailored to suit the needs of groups of various ages, sizes, and focuses.
Thank you all for your interest in and receptivity to my music and to my ever-unfolding journey as an artist. I appreciate you all very much.
Love and blessings,