Well, hello after my break to settle my body and back.
I am back, feeling ill with a very crappy cold, coughing too much, being slightly sick and bloodly – but cheering myself by listening to funk and classic soul.
This is the music of my life, the music that raising me even from the hell of prostitution, the music that touches depths of despair whilst always showing hope.
I hear Aretha, Marvin Gaye, James Brown, Earth, Wind & Fire, Chic, Temptations, Four Tops, Supremes, Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Stevie Wonder, Sam Cooke, Gladys Knight, Jackson Five etc etc – and I can be no-one but my essential Self.
This music has been my guardian angel all my life.
Soul and funk is more than entertainment to me, all too often it has given a reason to live and thrive – and many times Soul and funk has saved my life.
During my years of prostitution, one survival mechanism I had was to get music in the background, if it was Soul or funk, I could and did disappear into the sound whilst I perform the actions of the good whore.
I could act the whore whilst feeling nothing, even imagine I was dancing, as I sung in silence the well-remembered vocals.
I would fold my confusion, pain, fury and lack of hope into the passion of those singers.
I refused to know my emotions belong – instead they belong to Philly Soul, to Stax records, to Motown and to Altantic Soul.
I only remembered allowing in these simple emotions to music.
How to those of us made sub-human express emotions?
Emotions was never natural, it was learnt – so I will enternally grateful to soul and funk for being my teacher.
I hit the heights of expression when I discover Mavis Staples.
This was late, when I was exited, when my body and mind was ready to accept the complexities of grief, of pain, of reaching towards joy, to knowing it is ok to hope.
I learnt I could cry, scream, laugh, and shout alongside Mavis, and I learnt how to ease some of my past, and place it on the side to find the joy of the moment I was in.
As I grow towards joy and hope, I place disco into my heart and body with soul and funk.
Disco is the music of pure joy, it is hedonistic in a good way.
It is the music that cuts across sexualities, stick it tongue out to racism, a music that dances haters to exhaustion.
It is the music that I need to close out the hell I lived through – disco refuses that world, and just allows me to know I deserve happiness and the right to be selfish in getting it.
I refuse to accept that being inside the sex trade has the power to destroy access to emotions, to kill happiness, to wreck an exited woman beyond hope.
Listening to disco, soul and funk teaches me how indestructible the human soul is.