Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time and always start with the person nearest you.
New year wishes. Homelessness: songs from charity concert in London and ongoing sharing project. New song recording Human All, Wake Your Artist 2019 with refugee places crowdfunder and a call out from friend and singer/songwriter James Mason (you may remember from here) to keep fracking campaigners warm in the North of England and hibernating ladybugs.
Hello and new year wishes to friends reading these words. Wishing you are having a good beginning of the year whatever you are doing and wherever you find yourselves. Please do share if you feel like it, it always feels good to hear.
Whether you are longer term friends, or we met on retreat, a demo of some kind or a show, I’m glad to be writing to you again this year. I’m aware of many mails coming into our inboxes so I just felt to set my intention for the year here. I plan to continue sending a link out to my journal every 1-2 months, continuing to share songs, relaxations, interviews and photographs from my experiences of exploring broadly peace and social justice as a songwriter.
I plan to complete my first album this year, with a second ep first in a month or so.
if for whatever reason you need a pause on receiving mails, just let me know and please say hello anytime otherwise.
Homelessness concert and ongoing sharing project
This year began with a project contemplating on homelessness. According a Guardian report 1 in 200 people are homeless in London at this time (this includes those sleeping on the streets and in temporary accommodation)
My friend Tom set up a charity concert to raise funds for Shelter and through some conversations we had I felt moved to open what I called a Homelessness Sharing Project, asking friends to contribute with stories and encounters. It feels to me that sharing moments is a way to understand, each story in someway shows a part of the issue thanks all who took part and please mail me if you would like to.
While they won’t read this, I’m grateful to those who gave their permission to be interviewed by me in the last 5 or so weeks. When I hear their voices again on these recordings I feel a mix of sadness and also strength somehow, I wonder what you hear?
Here are a few videos from the concert, thanks to Will Saunders for filming – other artists here are Tom Manwell, Monica Max West, Yona and About a Bear, to keep them safe.
I was joined by friends Manu Farenzena, Monica Max West and Kareem Ghandour for There’s A Place and a new song inspired by two conversations I had with asylum seekers called A Thousand Hands
here’s 6 songs
Some of you may know my song Human All, inspired by conversations around gender identity; I just have it ready to share now so here it is and I’d like to introduce it again next time with some spoken interviews on the subject.
love to Sergio (bass) Walther (harmonica) Andy (trumpet) Tim (drums) and Nick (Sax) for their playing
Wake Up Your Artist 2019
in a few months Larissa Mazbouh and I will be in Germany to run the next Wake Up Your Artist retreat.
Have a read here if you would like to know more. In short we gather about 30 16-35ish year olds at the Plum Village monastery in Germany for a week of exploring ways to nurture or maybe open up our creativity with writing, painting, singing and moving. While following the monasteries meditation schedule.
Booking for the retreat is open now, here
Like last year we are also raising funds for those with refugee backgrounds to join us. Here’s this years crowdfunder and an interview with our friend Ahmad who joined us last year, Ahmad is smiling away at the bottom of these photographs 🙂
James (About a bear, to keep them safe) is raising money to buy firewood for Mission Springs Anti-Fracking camp. You may remember James from my journal last year – we met at Kirby Misperton Camp in Yorkshire.
If you feel to put in a few pounds you can contact me and I’ll pass on James’ PayPal and email address.
Lastly, did you ever see hibernating Ladybirds? This community is living in my room this winter, my wish is I don’t disturb too much with my songs. From what I’ve read, they come in for the Winter and leave again in Spring – I also read if you find ladybirds/marybugs in your house you can make these little safety nets, sometimes they fall and it saves them landing in the room and making the journey back to the sleep over.
with my love Joe
Alongside the recordings in my journal pages I have recently released an ep of songs ahead of an album. You can visit here to stream and download.
Please don’t let money be a concern. Feel free to pass through the donation screen with my blessing if you would like to download any songs and have no means to donate.
Any donations will go to my recording and traveling fund – thank you.