When people run out of ideas in debate, they might get intolerant (which they might already have been before) and aggressive. One of my all-time music heroes found the right words some days ago in order to make this visible. Before, he had witnessed an increasing number of unqualified comments on his current astrology seminar. But the whole thing has obviously not been about astrology or one’s attitude towards it. There are obviously other things happening, displayed on the canvas of astrology as a topic or subject.
„To all those wonderful cynical English men out there who keep addressing me as an idiot, you have to understand that I don’t believe in astrology. Let me be really clear, I don’t believe in anything like that. I am an atheist, left brain, scientific minded rationalist. I study how different people from different backgrounds from different cultures and ages describe our experience here on earth.“
Well, thinking outside the box is not everybody’s favourite. In other words: you’ll find ways if you want to, you will find reasons if you don’t want.
„I realize that I cannot bring validity to anything on a facebook post and I’m not attempting to do that, what I am saying is that when people run out of ideas in debate they resort to physical violence.
And the intellectual equivalent of physical violence is saying ‚it’s rubbish‘ before you have even entered the arena.
I’m not asking you to believe it because I don’t believe it myself, I’m not asking you to take it into consideration because I don’t give a flying fuck what you think of it.
But don’t tell me it has no value. my scientific, direct experience, proven over my lifetime repeatedly shows that there is value to this work even though the scientific minded cannot accept that. It’s one thing to discover the delightful patterns in DNA, it’s another thing to jump off a cliff and realize you can fly.“
Thank you, Francis Dunnery, for sharing your thoughts and experiences in your very own words and style. Priceless!
Unfortunately, this reminds me of the discussions and emberrasing & shameful actions and verbalizations of people in Germany (and probably also the rest of Europe) while expressing their thoughts on immigrants and refugees. People acting tremendously poor and – as always – just because of their own fears…
Way back then
So when I read Francis‘ post first, I had already realized that the date and the day were special: 8-8-2015. All just 8! Everything that I did on that day and also in parts the following day fitted as if by magic.
How did I come in touch with the music of Francis Dunnery?
Well, without my longtime friend and music mate Andy (check out his Band Subjam!), I would probably neither know Francis, nor would I have met him. Thank you Andy for keeping on inspiring me with music for all those years – in fact already 23!
In 1994, Andy introduced me to Dunnery’s brand new Album Fearless which blew me away. His following Album Tall Blonde Helicopter (abr. ‚TBH‘) marked a change in style, but was just as impressive. That was in 1995. I was jumping for joy when Andy and me found out that Dunnery was to come to Germany (he played both in Hannover and Hamburg) at that time. Funny fact about that concert: he was the opening act of the opening act!
His most entertaining performance – both musically and verbally – was followed by Dave Matthews Band who opened up for Hootie and the Blowfish. That was the situation in 1995. Five years later Dave Matthews was one of the guests on Carlos Santana’s mega seller Supernatural.
And one of my favorite tracks from that album…
So what happened?
In fact, Andy, his brother and me left the concert after 45 minutes when Dunnery had finished. The venue was Capitol in Hannover (Germany) where I was studying Law at that time. (I first met Andy when we worked together in the warehouse of a local record company in 1992.)
So we went outside with an undefined feeling of hope and expectation that Dunnery might show up outside, because we would have loved that and therefore stood in front of the door that led into the backstage area. After ten minutes Dunnery’s head popped out of one of the windows and I yelled my prepared „speech“ up to the second floor to make him come down to us. We learnt later from him that he had only looked out of the window for spitting…
5 minutes later, he joined the three of us for a 45 minute discussion about God, his career, his alcohol problem, self-responsibility, life, astrology, the United States and much more. It was hilarious! Although I don’t care much about autographs, the one he signed in the booklet of my TBH CD still is one of the few I’ve got and also praise.
The diversity of topics he was interested in, the passion he showed and the ongoing work on his personal issues where quite impressive to me and also very inspiring. I remember the following quote as if it was yesterday. He said to Andy:
„Don’t care about what other people tell you what you should do. Only believe in your own ideas, for in the end you can only rely on yourself. So fuck them. Even if it’s your brother and you love him. Fuck him if he tells you things that you don’t believe in.“
So my sister and my brother-in-law went to his concert in Hamburg a few days later. Same excitement after the show. In fact, my brother-in-law was particularly impressed by Francis‘ guitar skills. For those of you who don’t know yet: he’s one of the best guitar players in the world and also one of the fastest. He played with Santana, Robert Plant and many more. In the late 1980’s, he quit his former Prog Rock band It Bites and went to America. His first solo album was released in 1991: Welcome to the Wild Country. There are already some song pearls on this record, especially Jackal in you Mind, an 8-minute-track that blew me away when I first heard it. Lyrics, atmosphere and both piano and guitar send me shivers down my spine, every time I listen to it.
So here we are, more than 20 years later, and Francis Dunnery continues to be a great entertainer and a still growing personality.
[Goal and attitude alone determine personality. — Max Lüscher ]
What I particularly love about Francis is his ability to explain things and express himself in his very own words. No marketing or selling language. Rather like much older people with different backgrounds and other eras to have lived in, like Max Lüscher for example. No copy paste style, no superficial and exchangeable mass compatible style, but words of true lovers of mankind and human beings.
If I had been able to go to his astrology seminar last weekend in the U.S., I would have done so. But there might be a chance of repeating that. Maybe with another topic, but surely with a personality in the room! Yep, we learnt from there that the topic or subject is not what matters. It’s about what fills our lives and gives sense to it. Joy.
The meaning of life is to have and to feel joy. — Max Lüscher
Also, I’m still hoping he will come for some shows to Germany again. Otherwise, I will have to book him for one of his famous House Concerts. Well, if I team up with Andy, we should really make that happen.
And as I’m learning again these days: we’d better start this „project“ immediately, since:
The future is determined by what you do in the present. — Mahatma Gandhi
Seize the day, go out and truly meet people and do what you really want to do! Otherwise, you will ruin your self-esteem sooner or later.
I’m traveling to Los Angeles today, just flew above Greenland. Awesome views from the plane window and strange feeling with the first time using WiFi above the clouds. But the focus I’m able to achieve while I’m writing this and the chance to work or think on stuff that’s too often to hard to start or to finish in the office or at home are amazing.
I have to say it with one of Francis Dunnery’s songs: I’m in Love.
I’ll leave you with this tune as it perfectly fits here. And I truly believe that I smell „the fragrance of the favourite summer of [my] life!“
It’s here. Aloha!