Una canción premonitoria

Actualizado: 5 de jun de 2020

El verbo, la palabra escrita, la palabra enunciada y conjurada, como un poderoso encantamiento, construye nuestras realidades, nace en nuestras mentes como pensamiento y al ser expresada, termina esculpiendo el mundo tal como lo perciben nuestros sentidos.

Siempre he tenido la intuición de que cada poema, cada canción escrita, cuando encierra una intención profunda desde su creación, aún sin la intención consciente de tenerla, contiene no uno, sino miles de significados, tantas diferentes lecturas como seres en el mundo y que conforme cambian los tiempos, aquellas palabras poderosas alguna vez escritas, van adquiriendo nuevos sentidos, convirtiéndose en entes autónomos, sin tiempo, que le hablan de manera distinta a aquel que quiera escuchar con atención.

Pero nunca antes como en estos días esa sensación había cobrado tanta fuerza para mi. Estuve revisando muchas canciones de los Beatles durante el fin de semana pasado y

a raíz de esto y del ejercicio que he venido realizando desde el aislamiento, de compartir una canción al día por medio de mi perfil de Facebook, muchas de las canciones que he escogido o mejor, que han venido a visitarme, cobran un sentido poderoso en la situación particular en la que me encuentro y en la que el mundo entero se ha visto envuelto en estos últimos meses.

Más recientemente, ocurrió algo que llamó poderosamente mi atención. Como algunos sabrán hace unos días recibí un regalo inesperado, algo que me sorprendió y me conmovió profundamente. Un par de personas muy especiales para mí, pero de las que nunca esperé algo así, escribieron una canción inspirados en mi historia de aislamiento en el mar. Siendo ésta la primera vez que alguien me regala una canción y eso, es algo significativo para alguien que ha dedicado su vida a hacer canciones.

La canción que está compuesta originalmente en Inglés, se llama “La Balada de Juan Jade” y a mi modo de ver tiene tanto de juego como de profundidad. Está grandiosamente escrita y descubre por ejemplo que “Juan Jade”, el nombre que escogí para mí, tiene muchas posibilidades de rima con muchas palabras en Inglés. Sin duda alguna, las palabras que el autor escogió, dejan entrever la búsqueda y el esfuerzo que supuso encontrar la “versión final” de todas las posibles versiones de la historia, así que aunque fuese escrita a manera de divertimento, como todo acto de creación, contiene ese esfuerzo intelectual maravilloso y ese acto de posesión por medio del cual el pensamiento, que proviene de algún lugar misterioso, usa el intelecto como vehículo para ser plasmado como palabra escrita.

En el aspecto musical, la canción es preciosa en su sencillez. Con mi hijo coincidimos a primera escucha que recuerda aquellas canciones de tono “infantil” que Syd Barret hizo para el primer álbum de Pink Floyd y después para sus discos solistas “The Mad Cap Laughs” y “Barret”, que muestran un nivel único de espontaneidad y bella locura en la composición. También tiene un aire de canción de mar, al mejor estilo Beatles (Yellow Submarine/Octopus Garden) y cuya melodía tiene también un tinte de banda marcial.

Personalmente me encantan esas canciones que a mi jamás se me hubiesen ocurrido y ésta es sin duda, una de ellas. Es para mí un honor total que ésta, haya sido la primer incursión en la composición para quienes la escribieron porque justamente tiene presente toda la inocencia de la primera vez.

Pues bien, resulta ser, que “La Balada de Juan Jade”, tenía además un elemento premonitorio, que como siempre sucede en estos casos, le es revelado solo a quien es consciente y le interesa interpretar los símbolos que encierra la palabra y las situaciones que se presentan en la vida.

Cuando estaba leyendo y reorganizando los versos para aprender la canción, había un verso que me llamó especialmente la atención, ya que no podía comprenderlo en su totalidad y fue muy enigmático para mí.

Fue escrito así:

“Said he was the ghost on a ghost ship, so he started to scream

Freddy and John,

George Floyd and Ziggy, he did sing”

Entonces supuse que era mi imagen, clamando por ayuda al espíritu de algunos notables músicos ya fallecidos: Freddy para Freddy Mercury, John para John Lennon, pero como George y Floyd no estaban separados por una coma, pensé que tal vez había un misterioso personaje llamado George Floyd del que no estaba al tanto.

Podría ser solo una coma faltante, por lo que sería George para George Harrison, Floyd para Pink Floyd (Rick Wright/Syd Barret?) y Ziggy para Ziggy Stardust (David Bowie).

Por estúpido y tonto que parezca, pasé días y noches pensando quién podría haber sido ese tal George Floyd.

Lo busqué en Google, pero no hubo resultados, ni una pista, en ese momento nadie sabía de la existencia de una persona con ese nombre.

Hasta hace unos días, ese día escribí en mi perfil de Facebook:

- I read the news today, oh boy!

Hace dos días, un hombre afroamericano murió asfixiado cuando un oficial de policía puso su rodilla contra su cuello durante al menos siete minutos, mientras estaba acostado boca abajo en la carretera. Su nombre era George Floyd. -

Lamentablemente, hoy si busco en Google “George Floyd”, la búsqueda arroja miles de resultados.

De hecho, su absurda muerte, originó un movimiento sin precedentes, miles de personas salieron a las calles exigiendo justicia y pasando por alto toda medida de aislamiento, su nombre se convirtió en un símbolo no solo en los Estados Unidos, sino en todo el mundo, de la lucha legítima por la libertad y el derecho a la igualdad para todas las personas en el mundo a pesar del color de su piel. Mientras escribo esto, los disturbios continúan en todo Estados Unidos, cientos de edificios están en llamas, el presidente está a punto de declarar la Ley Marcial desde un búnker donde está recluido por razones de seguridad y la Casa Blanca quedó a oscuras como un símbolo único de la época, de un mundo cansado de convivir con el racismo, la injusticia, la desigualdad y el abuso del poder.

Y ese nombre, George Floyd, estaba golpeando en mi cabeza días antes de que su tragedia sucediera, todo porque "accidentalmente" apareció en esta canción.

Finalmente, la canción inspiró en mí una avalancha de ideas, pero principalmente, la de darle vida al personaje del fantasma que habita el barco y que finalmente llevó a que quisiera hacer un curioso y divertido video para una versión más orquestada de la canción la cual muestro hoy junto a esta entrada del blog y el cual de alguna manera es un homenaje a la montaña rusa emocional que ha sido esta experiencia y a la reconciliación con algunos de los fantasmas que me habitan.

Perseguir el misterio y el poder de la palabra es una de las razones por las cuales decidí empezar a escribir un blog, también la imposibilidad que he experimentado durante toda mi vida de llevar un diario, recomendación que he recibido por parte de muchas personas en esta travesía y que sin duda es un gran consejo, pero aunque soy una persona disciplinada y artísticamente obsesiva, carezco del rigor que esta actividad requiere, así que este ejercicio de escritura ha sido el equivalente a un diario de viaje. Jugar con las palabras es una tarea grandiosa y como todos los juegos sagrados, contiene un nivel de seriedad y gravedad del cual casi nunca somos conscientes y eso es quizá lo más maravilloso del acto de sentarse frente a una hoja de papel en blanco y dejar que el pensamiento fluya a través de la pluma.

Dejo al final de la publicación la letra original de la canción. Trabajo en una versión en Español que le haga justicia, así que no la quise traducir aquí de manera literal al español. Agregué a la versión final solamente un verso de cierre en la que nuestro personaje se lanza finalmente al mar, detrás de una bella sirena que lleva una piedra de jade en su cabello.

Junio 2 de 2020

ENGLISH


A premonitory song

The Word, the written word, the enunciated and conjured word, like a powerful spell, builds our whole realities. It is first conceived in our minds as thoughts and then as we express those thoughts through words, it ends up sculpting the world as our senses perceive it.

I have always had the intuition that each poem, each written song, when it contains a deep intention since its creation, even without the conscious intention of having it, contains not one, but thousands of meanings, as many as humans in the world and that, as times change, those powerful words once written acquire new connotations, becoming autonomous and timeless entities, that speak differently to those who want to listen carefully.

But never before like these days has that feeling gained so much strength for me. I reviewed a lot of Beatles songs over the past weekend and as a result of this and the exercise that I have been doing during my isolation days, of sharing one song a day through my Facebook profile, many of the songs that have come to my mind, have acquired a powerful meaning in the particular situation the entire world has gone through in recent months and that has affected me in a very particular way.

More recently, something specially caught my attention. As some of you may know a few days ago, I received an unexpected gift, something that surprised and moved me very deeply. A couple of persons that are very special to me, but from whom I never expected something like that, wrote a song inspired by my story of isolation at sea. Being the first time that someone gives me a song as a gift, is very significant for someone who has dedicated his life to making songs.

The song is originally composed in English and it´s is called “The Ballad of Juan Jade” and in my opinion it´s both silly and depth. It is beautifully written and make me discover for example, that "Juan Jade", the name I chose for myself, has many possibilities of rhyming with many words in English. Without a doubt, the words the author chose shows the effort involved in searching and finding the “final version” of all possible versions of the story, so even if it was written as a divertimento, like every act of creation, it contains lots of intellectual work and that wonderful act of possession by means of which thought, which comes from some mysterious place, uses the intellect as a vehicle to be embodied as a written word.

In the musical aspect, the song is beautiful in its simplicity. With my son we agreed on the first listen that it resembles those songs with a “childish” tone that Syd Barret wrote for the first album by Pink Floyd and later on his solo albums “The Mad Cap Laughs” and “Barret”, showing a unique level of spontaneity and beautiful madness in the composition. It also has some air of sea songs, in the finest Beatles style (Yellow Submarine / Octopus Garden) and whose melody also reminded me those from martial bands.

I personally love those songs that would never have occurred to me and this is undoubtedly one of them. It´s such an honor for me that this was the first incursion into the composition for those who wrote it because it captures the innocence of the first time.

Well. Turns out to be The Ballad of Juan Jade was also some kind of premonitory song and as usual, these type of symbolisms are only revealed to the ones that are really aware and interested in finding meanings in words and the things that appears in one´s life.

When I was reading and re-organizing the verses in order to learn the song, there was one verse that particularly draw my attention as I couldn’t comprehend it in its entirety and was an enigma for me.

It was written like this:

“Said he was the ghost on a ghost ship, so he started to scream

Freddy and John,

George Floyd and Ziggy, he did sing”

Then I assumed the image of myself, crying out for help to the spirit of some notable deceased musicians: Freddy for Freddy Mercury, John for John Lennon, but as George and Floyd were not separated by a comma, I thought maybe there was a mysterious character called George Floyd that I was not aware of.

It could be just a missing comma, so It would be George for George Harrison, Floyd for Pink Floyd (Rick Wright/Syd Barret?) and Ziggy for Ziggy Stardust (David Bowie)

Stupid and silly as it may seem, I spent days and nights thinking who could have been this George Floyd.

I Google it then but there were no results, not a clue, at the moment nobody knew about a person under that name.

Until a few days ago, that day I wrote on my Facebook profile:

- I read the news today, oh boy!

Two days ago, an African-American man died after a police officer knelt on his neck for at least seven minutes, while he was lying face down on the road. His name was George Floyd.

Sadly, today if I google George Floyd, there are thousands of results. He was not a famous singer, but dead indeed.

In fact, his absurd death caused an unprecedented movement, thousands of people walked the streets demanding justice and ignoring any socials distancing restriction. His name became a symbol not only in the United States, but throughout the world. one of the legitimate fight for freedom and the right to equality for all people in the world despite the color of their skin. As I write this, riots continue across the United States, hundreds of buildings are on fire, the President is about to declare Martial Law from a bunker where he is being kept for security reasons, and the White House went dark as a unique symbol of the time, a symbol of a world tired of co-existing with racism, injustice, social inequality and abuse of power.

And that name, George Floyd, was banging in my head days before his tragedy happened, all because "accidentally" appeared in this song.

Finally, the song inspired in me lots of ideas, but mainly, to bring to life the funny ghost character that inhabits the ship and that later led me to want to make a video clip for a more orchestrated version of the song which today I will premiere along with this blog entry and which in some way is a tribute to the emotional roller coaster that this experience has been for me and to the reconciliation with some of the ghosts that inhabit me.


Pursuing the mystery and the power of the word is one of the reasons why I decided to start writing a blog, also the impossibility that I have experienced throughout my life of keeping a diary, a recommendation that I have received from many people in this journey and that is undoubtedly great advice, but although I´m a disciplined and artistically obsessive person, I lack the rigor that this activity requires, so this writing exercise has been the equivalent of a travel diary. Playing with words is an honorable labor and as all sacred games, it contains a high level of seriousness that we´re hardly even aware of and that is perhaps the most wonderful thing about sitting in front of a blank sheet of paper and letting thought flow through a pen.

At the bottom of this post you will find the song original lyrics. I'm working on a Spanish version that does it justice, so I didn't want to translate it literally into Spanish here. I added a final verse in which our character finally dives into the sea, chasing a beautiful mermaid wearing a jade stone in her hair.

The Ballad of Juan Jade

Lyrics by Gary Jacob

Music by Melissa Brumm

This is the story of the singer Juan Jade, Juan Jade

And the ship on which he stayed, and stayed and stayed

And the songs that he sang,

He wrote from the bed where he laid

Night after night, and day after day,

Were heard the lovely serenades,

From the singer Juan Jade

on the piano he played

2 -3 ports and 8- 10 days

Between Sydney and Tahiti

When the captain aimed the ship

Back towards Fiji

Then the fever spread from ship to ship

and the sea started to rage

And the captain and crew

could no longer weather the whip

of the wind and the waves

So the crew and the crooner Juan Jade

Were left to navigate

its final fate

Jade at the helm and his Norwegian first mate

Would together find their way

through the dangerous straits

near the Solomon sea

Guinea was in the distance at the straits northern end

But the Federales said ¡No! as he rounded the bend

Said he was the ghost on a ghost ship, so he started to scream

Freddy and John, George Floyd and Ziggy, he did sing

'Til the ship turned east again toward The Philippines

Days and more weeks and months did Juan Jade sail

And then on the Ocho de Mayo, Juan Jade, Juan Jade

He waw a star in the sky and land just ahead

This is the story of the singer Juan Jade, Juan Jade

And the ship on which he stayed, and stayed and stayed

And the songs that he sang,

He wrote from the bed where he laid

His port was a-welcoming, but poor Juan Jade

He was an-aging

He was now 72

no more a young man

But his voice was clear, his hair was grayer,

but he was slim and fit

and very, very tan.

The last thing was heard from Juan Jade, Juan Jade, Juan Jade

he dived into the sea one day, one day

Chasing a mermaid

With one jade in her hair.

June 2 2020


49 vistas0 comentarios

Entradas Recientes

Ver todo

Música para escuchar con el alma.