Terry Mace

Story

In January 2017 I suffered several major heart attacks! I died several times and was resuscitated. In those deaths my life and my life's work at that time changed forever. In very simple terms, I could no longer return to the 'identity' of the man I once was. After my surgery, recovery and eventual discharge my prognosis was given to me. I am dying! There it is! I will die sooner than later based on national statistics for those with coronary heart disease, diabetes and mental health issues and problems. I have already exceeded national averages for life expectancy. And yet, here I am! Still alive and slowly kicking back. As a result of my time within the Abyss during my deaths I have realised the complete and total meaninglessness and nothingness of both life and the universe. I am a man without hope, faith or dreams. Therefore, I've nothing left to loose to share whatever I now can before I finally pop my clogs and return to the big void in the Abyss. In some ways, I'm doing my best moment by moment to be what, Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche called the, Übermensch. In really basic and broad terms a human being who seeing the emptiness, pain and fruitlessness and meaningless of his life chooses to continue to survive as a 'super' man or man in touch with his deepest inner and outer pain but chooses not to take his own life in anger at a bastard universe which does not care. This is why I write songs and compose music about life, death and the futility of the human race. We are doomed and my music, hopefully, reflects in all its glorious darkness these sentiments. So there, now you know!

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What is music to you? What does it give you?

In both existential and nihilistic terms music is both life and death to me. As an existential and nihilistic singer songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and experimental musician I accept that music is keeping me alive daily, sometimes hour by hour. Equally, it's no more important or less important than anything else I currently use as a defence mechanism. I personally use music to kill my time here on earth before I die. Thus, music gives me a sense of my life and my final death and the complete meaningless and nothingness of life including music. More philosophically stated, music is my way to give my life both meaning and some iota of hope. I bet you wished you'd never asked!

What is your music dream?

I am a man without dreams, hopes or desires. I see through all of the societal and world illusions, defence mechanisms and mythical stories that we tell ourselves in order to be either happy or peaceful with our pathetic parasitic mortal existence before we die. Dreams, musical or otherwise are no more or less than a denial and delusion of the core reality of our impending death and non existence. I do not have a musical dream, hope or aspiration. What I do have is a particular set of skills!

If you could change the world - what would you start with?

A really virulent global plague a world flood or a natural earth extinction level event. That's the most powerful change I could wish for that would have the most profound effect upon our continued denial of our insignificance and uselessness as a human being parasite within the universe. Seriously? More than you'll ever know! Check out my lyrics, songwriting and music if you think I'm kidding...

Which is the most memorable song from your childhood?

As someone who grew up in the sixties I was surrounded both inside the house and outside the house by some of the greatest music in the world ever. My brother Mark (also a Droobler) was a DJ, promoter and all round musical influence of the first degree. It was a time musically like no other and it will never return. Experimentation, off centre and down right bizarre and weird the 60's had it all and mostly I love it all. I embraced some of the, 70's especially the experimental and off centre but truthfully I had really very little time for most the, 80's, with it's synthetic skin and plastic heart. Technology is wonderful. Using Wonderful technology badly does not make me glow with joy. Although, as with everything I can say there are some exceptions such as those more seasoned musicians and artists from the 60's and 70's who came back from hiding and retirement and worked together on collaborations either in the studio or at the consul in production and mixing and mastering. As for the, 90's onward I've learnt to both trust my ears and my gut. I cherry pick. If I like something it's pretty much in the first 30 seconds. I now know what has potential and what is trash. At least from my personal listening experience and knowledge of the last 50+ years of being open to the sound of music. That's one of the greatest gifts age gives you! Discernment!

Who are your favorite musical artists or bands?

I've considered this question over the last several days and this is where I am. Any artist or band which can make me 'feel' one of the eight 'core' emotions as described by, Robert Plutchik which he grouped into four pairs of polar opposites (joy-sadness, anger-fear, trust-distrust, surprise-anticipation) is going to gain my attention and focus. What else is music for other than to powerfully trigger and ignite the emotions, feelings and thoughts of our-self in relationship to another. Be it through the transference of music or physical or emotional contact. These bands and artist will always have my ear and more...

What inspires you to make music?

Fundamentally, knowing that I'm living on very much borrowed time and that my death can occur while resting, active or asleep! Because of this core reality I make music which ignites my inner flame to keep that potential light burning a little while longer until the wind of change extinguishes it forever and forever. My music, however, may just 'live' on. If not, at least I killed some time before I died in a pleasurable and enjoyable way. The moral of the story is simple! Don't wait until you are dying to find your voice and your song to sing and your groove to play. Regardless of the illusions of musical fame and fortune make music in the now for the now. Tomorrow does not come! And remember, nothing else is of anymore importance when you take your last breath so you may as well let it be a note or song rather than a scream of fear and trepidation as you slip into the void of the abyss! You see, that was inspiring wasn't it!

What is the message you want to send with your music?

In principle, a message is only understood by another if they are first ready to listen to receive and decode. Communication is not one way. For a message to be sent in the first place a receiver needs to be waiting. For my music to include or contain a, 'message' I first need something to say to express to share. Otherwise, it's not a message but rather more noise based. Sometimes, even noise can contain a message. Equally, I need to understand that now more than ever other artists, thinkers, feelers and activists within the creative industries which have not sold their souls to the highest bidder, are, in fact now listening to hear more than before. In this sense, my musical message will be heard if there are willing listeners standing by for my transmissions musically. In short, my music always has and always will be littered and woven with messages for those with open ears to hear. No one message is more important to me than another but rather, that everything I write and create musically is the bottle within which the placement of a message becomes possible. What ocean I set it to sail upon depends on many things. At the moment, I'm giving the, 'Drooble' ocean an opportunity to hear and discover my musical messages. I guess, for those interested you will simply have to open the bottle and see what comes out...

How do you feel when you perform in front of an audience?

Simple! Deep Gratitude that I'm still alive and kicking out my music, sound and poetry into the crowd, no matter how small or BIG. Over 40+ years of performing creatively and musically I've played, performed and stood as an artist in front of a very committed audience of one in my kitchen at home as well as a more fluid and less focused audience of 3,000+ people in Hyde Park back in the early 80's. I've had a few great memorable moments performing or collaborating and a few times as a busker and street musician only kindred spirits will understand where a famous face smiles and sticks a tenner into your hat, you blink and they're gone. Cheers, to you all! Imagine smoking a BIG fat 'doobie' (not to be confused with a 'drooble') with, Van Morrison, Most of Aswad, John Cooper Clark and many, many others during Glastonbury 82 when I was performing on the Acoustic and Theatre stages during the festival. Micheal Eavis made a good cuppa! Basically, it makes me feel alive to perform and it's my intention to bring this energy to each and every future gig as long as I live. Even, if my last gig is the metaphorical, 'Great Gig in The Sky'...

How do you see the musicians’ reality nowadays? What could be improved?

I have absolutely no idea what another persons reality construct looks like or feels like! Especially, another musicians. These days, I focus on my stuff. I make time to be with me. I change me. I transform me. What others do is none of my business unless they make it my business. Then, I have an opinion. Currently, as a singer songwriter and multi-instrumentalist I am training myself in technology such as 'Drooble' which might allow me in time to connect and share with other like minded people on a musical and sound journey level and adventure. Delusions of one's self importance and ability is often no more or less than a defence mechanism, therefore, humbleness, humility and cold hard raw energy will always win over the more superficial elements of the deluded, be it musically or otherwise. Another's reality is their own and, thus, inaccessible to me or anyone else. That's why I've shared my reality as a musician...

What do you think of Drooble?

Still Processing...

What frustrates you most as a musician?

It's a very good question and one which I will endeavour to answer in one way or another. Frustration in my personal experience comes from fundamentally being unable to express some part of ourselves. Musically, whilst I don't have this process as a singer songwriter, instrumentally, I'm hindered and, thus, frustrated by my own current limitations and fragility as a 'player' of multiple instruments. I'm a lefty to start with so that's not sadly a plus musically most times as other lefties can attest. Although, creatively, we are more capable than right handed folk at least statistically. Writing is something that comes easy to me and always has. It's just like that sometimes so there's never a writer's block and so normally no frustration. Instrument wise, I've progressed so much in the last two years that I'd be confident to compose 'open cord' and 'unusual' tuning arrangements up to several chords in variance which two years ago I could not do or understand. Equally, my listening is very focused so I can tune/mix/arrange/compose anything by ear in or out of tune as well if you get me. That's high functioning autism for you! So, that's not normally a frustration unless I'm interrupted which almost never happens now because I'm mostly a hermit with my 100% supportive companion and partner always understands when I'm making music or writing songs. However, the idea and reality of me becoming a capable instrumentalist before I die may just be a chord too far. That said, I currently can write, compose and arrange my songs and compositions using, Acoustic/Electric Guitar 2/3/4/5/6/12 string classical, bass and lead and rhythm. I also use Acoustic/Electric Banjo, Mandolin and Violin. I'm working on improving my keyboard skills but could now more confidently compose simple chorus, melody or lyrics using Electric/Acoustic Piano and Synth. Drums, percussion and other kit like bells, chimes and stomp boxes are also under my belt. I guess, it's my lack of confidence in my accepted limited abilities with translating into core musical terminology and theory some of my wilder more elaborate concepts and ideas. In my mind I can hear the whole piece, instrument by instrument. Trying to convey that musically is more challenging. I think my dream musical moment would be to have a couple of good years working in the studio with, 'The Wrecking Crew'. Wow, we'd get it done! That is probably what frustrates me the most. Translating the music inside me into something musically external to me. Of course, The Black Dog keeps me constantly active so this is also a difficulty and eventual musical frustration because when, The Black Dog wakes, it's best to not make too much noise! At least that is until recently when I decided to see if I could scare, The Black Dog away with my music and singing. So far, most days it works. And when it doesn't, I let myself feel frustrated, make a coffee, have a smoke and watch TV with my songwriting notebook and guitar close by. It's almost never been the case that an hours worth of trash TV does not herald and reward me with something creative to aid my music, be it a title or a verse, lyric or idea. Frustrations cause frustrations which cause, you get the idea! I do my best therefore to limit all frustration to an absolute minimum moment by moment. I can feel a song coming on...

Do you support your local scene as a fan? How?

The short and curly's of the question is, when I can I do and when I can't I don't! You see, I can keep it concise...

What qualities should a musician nowadays have in order to get their music heard by a larger audience?

Preferably a loud or long distance voice, via a tongue, lips, sound box and larynx plus, obviously a chosen instrument or sound making thing made or otherwise acquired. Normally, that's it! Simples, next!

Share some awesome artists that we’ve never heard of.

'The Black Dog Sound Machine', 'The Lemonade Tree', 'Jim Jones and The Righteous Mind' and 'The Balladeers', 'Spirogyra' and finally, Gav Troon & Terry Mace...