ūüé∂ It burns

Cómo la escribí

Esta canci√≥n es una de las que no escrib√≠, sino hasta horas despu√©s de que se me ocurriera, o me ocurriera deber√≠a decir, porque a veces las canciones simplemente ocurren como tantos otros bellos accidentes que poco parecen tener que ver con uno. Me sorprendi√≥ caminando por la calle en Villa del Parque a finales del a√Īo 2005, en busca de la parada de un colectivo que me llevara de nuevo a mi casa. Vino todo junto melod√≠a y letra y para no olvidarla la repet√≠ bajito sin parar hasta que me baj√© del colectivo y entr√© a la casa. En esa √©poca no ten√≠a smartphone ni grabador de ning√ļn tipo, as√≠ que llam√© a mi mejor amigo y compa√Īero de aventuras musicales y se la cant√© por tel√©fono. √Čl, del otro lado, la grab√≥ para que no se me fuera a olvidar. Fue una especie de mantra de autoayuda.

De qué se trata

Esos eran d√≠as dif√≠ciles. Pod√≠a intuir que me echaban de Fuerzabruta despu√©s de 3 a√Īos de trabajo y esfuerzo en cocreaci√≥n del espect√°culo pero ni siquiera necesitaban dec√≠rmelo por la precariedad de nuestro contrato laboral. El dolor por la muerte de mi mam√° estaba fresco y la vida y mi propia piel eran sitios confusos. Pero caminando despacio esa ma√Īana de sol entibiador y brisa esperanzadora pude sentir que de todo iba a reponerme, que con el tiempo surgir√≠a un profundo sentido para ese despido silente y para la sensaci√≥n de no pertenecer a ning√ļn sitio. La letra habla de el √≠ntimo n√ļcleo alegre que fue despertado por un momento de serenidad al sol. Un n√ļcleo que no se puede romper, una secreta alegr√≠a que sigue ardiendo cuando parece que todo est√° perdido. Ahora la grab√© viajando. Cambi√© un poco una parte de la letra para reflejar tambi√©n este momento. It burns, m√°s de 10 a√Īos despu√©s y en un momento de tremenda libertad y alegr√≠a creadora ardiendo como nunca. #Iupi

Muchas botellas

Casi todas las tomas de esta canción fueron hechas en y alrededor de Playa Gigante, Tola, Rivas, Nicaragua. Una de las cosas que más noté durante mis primeros días en Nicaragua fue la ausencia de agua potable. En Costa Rica, siempre había tenido agua potable disponible gratuitamente. En Nicaragua, en cambio, los botellones de Fuente Pura como el que usé de tambor están por todos lados. Hoteles y restaurants tienen racks en donde los apilan, los camiones circulan sin parar. Petróleo (en el plástico) y más petróleo (en los camiones) para repartir una de las necesidades más básicas de cualquier ser humano: agua potable. Además, siempre la misma marca. No investigué, pero imagino contratos de exclusividad y ligazones entre esta empresa de agua potable y los gobiernos de turno. El mercado cautivo, por otro lado, comprando aquello que necesita y de lo cual debería disponer abundantemente y en forma natural.
Tambi√©n us√© botellas para grabar la l√≠nea de bajo del tema. Mis compa√Īerxs de vivienda de la wifitribe compraban vinos (algunas veces argentinos!) y yo les prohib√≠ tirar las botellas vac√≠as. El shaker es el mismo de siempre y est√° tambi√©n hecho con una botella vac√≠a. Era de Coca Cola, edici√≥n limitada del Mundial de F√ļtbol 2006. Me gusta tanto ese shaker que tiene m√°s de 10 a√Īos y se gan√≥ un lugar en mi escueto equipaje.

Cómo y Dónde

Al igual que todas las dem√°s videocanciones de Un a√Īo sin invierno, It burns fue grabada con el microfonito port√°til Zoom H2 y las tomas que ven son del momento exacto de su grabaci√≥n. Pero a diferencia de las otras canciones, en √©sta oportunidad la l√≠nea de bajo la arm√© sampleando audio y video y loopeando. Es la primera vez que hago eso y fue porque me era imposible cambiar de botella a botella al tempo de la canci√≥n. El soporte de las botellas fue el borde de la pileta de la casa de wifitribe y yo estaba parada en una plataforma detr√°s. Me quedaban a una buena altura para soplar pero me era imposible pasar de una a otra tan r√°pidamente como era necesario.
La voz la grab√© en Managua, Nicaragua, sentada en una Ceiba de cientos de a√Īos que tiene que haber sobrevivido al terremoto de 1972 que destruy√≥ casi completamente la ciudad. La Ceiba es el √°rbol sagrado de los mayas. En las fotos de backstage se aprecia su tama√Īo y majestuosidad. A las Ceiba se las ve en todos los pa√≠ses de Centroam√©rica, a los costados de los caminos y en medio de la selva. Me hab√≠an llamado la atenci√≥n varias veces antes de conocer su nombre e importancia hist√≥rica.
Los coros los grab√© en Palenque, Chiapas, M√©xico, en unas caba√Īas a pocos km de los templos encontrados en plena selva. En la tumba de Pacal, ah√≠ a pocos km de donde grab√©, se encontr√≥ un grabado que se llam√≥ “La Ceiba” porque la composici√≥n parece conformar una gran Ceiba con las ra√≠ces en el inframundo y la copa en el reino de los cielos. M√°s tarde se interpret√≥ que el grabado lo representaba a Pacal manejando una nave espacial.

How it was written

This song is one that was not written until several hours after it came to me as some songs do, naturally and suddenly just like many other wonderful accidents in life that occur one with no intervention of one’s intention. The song surprised me as I was walking down a calm street in Buenos Aires towards the end of 2005. I was looking for the bus stop of the bus that would take me back home. It popped up in my head melody and lyrics all together. It was not a smartphone era so, not to forget it I sang it repeatedly until I got off and into my house. Not only didn’t I have a smartphone but I didn’t even have an audio recorder of any kind at home, so I called my best friend and musical adventures buddy and sang it to him over the phone. On the other side, he recorded it so that I would not forget it.

What it is about

It was a sort of self help mantra. Those were hard days for me. I could foresee that I was being fired from Fuerzabruta, my first job on stage, after 3 years of work and effort co-creating the show. They didn’t even need to tell me anything due to the sketchiness of our working agreement/contract. The pain from my recent mom’s death was still fresh. Both life and my own skin were confusing places to be. But strolling around that warm sunny breezy morning I could feel that I would overcome it all eventually, that time would help me find deep meaning to my being silently fired and the overwhelming feeling of not belonging anywhere. The lyrics refer to a deep intimate nucleus of joy that was awoken by a simple sunny moment of serenity. A nucleus that cannot be broken, a secret joy that continues to burn when it all seems lost. I have now recorded this song while travelling. I modified a part of the lyrics to reflect this momento also. It burns, more than 10 years afterwards and during a time of enormous freedom and creative joy, burning as never before. #yay

Many bottles

Almost all the shots for this song were done in and around Gigante Bay, Tola, Rivas, Nicaragua. One of the things that I first noted being in Nicaragua was the scarcity of fresh drinkable water. In Costa Rica, drinkable water had always been ubiquitous and free. In Nicaragua, on the other hand, the big “Fuente Pura” bottles like the one I turned into a drum are everywhere. Hotels and restaurants pile them up in dedicated racks, the trucks go around nonstop. Petroleum (in the plastic) and more petroleum (in the trucks) to deliver (to those who can afford it) one of the most basic needs for human life: drinkable water. And that’s the only brand. Although I haven’t researched, I do imagine exclusivity contracts and bonds between this company and the government. The market, a captive one, paying for a basic need people should have access to freely and naturally.
I also used empty glass bottles to record the base line. My fellow digital nomads whom I shared the wifitribe house with would buy wines (sometimes Argentine wines) and I prohibited them to throw away the bottles. The shaker is the same one I always use and was also made with an empty bottle. It’s a Coca Cola, 2006 Football world Cup limited edition. I like it so much that it’s over 10 years old and it secured itself a permanent spot in my rather small luggage.

Where and How

Just like all the other videosongs of Un a√Īo sin invierno, It burns was recorded with the tiny zoom H2 portable mic and recorder. The shots you can see in the edited video are also the exact moment of the audio recording. But unlike all the other songs, I had to sample and loop the bottles to create the base line. It’s the first time I do this and the reason was that it was just impossible for me to walk from one bottle to the other at the pace the tempo of the song required. The bottles were standing on the side of the pool of the wifitribe house and I was standing on a lower platform behind them. It was a miraculous comfortable arrangement for me to blow into them but it was impossible to walk from one to the other as quickly as necessary. I recorded the vocals in Managua, Nicaragua, sitting on an ancient Ceiba that has evidently survived the 1972 earthquake that destroyed the entire city. The Ceiba is the sacred tree of the Mayas. In the backstage photos you can appreciate its size and majesty. You can see them in every Central American country by the roads and in the middle of the forests. They had caught my attention many times before I learnt their name and historical relevance.
I recorded the second layer of vocals in Palenque, Chiapas, M√©xico, while staying in cabins in the jungle just a few km away from the archeological site where many temples have been studied. Inside Pacal’s tomb, very close to were I was recording, they found a very cool drawing they also called “La Ceiba” because the composition resembled a big Ceiba tree, rooted in the infra world and with its branches reaching up to the reign of the skies. A more recent interpretation sees the drawing as a scene of the emperor driving a spaceship.

Letra / Lyrics

Well this is my sun
This is my fear
This is my home
and this is my choice
After all I’m still choosing
(you’re choosing, you’re choosing)
Well this is my sun
and it’s all alive
with all or with nothing
it will always burn
for it burns from inside
And this is my fear,
right here from where I face it
and this is my home
the whole planet
and that’s why I’m travelling
Well this is my choice,
I choose not to hate
I choose not to hate
I’d rather be better
I’d rather be well
I don’t wish to be
where nobody wants me to be
And this is my voice
got nothing to say
Got nothing to say,
I don’t have anything to say
With all or with nothing
It will always sing
for it sings from within, deep
And this is my song
Do you understand?
You don’t understand
You don’t understand
With all or with nothing
I’ll keep it out loud, loud, loud
With all or with nothing
I’ll keep it out loud
for I love to hear it outside
And this is my skill
Be happy within