Ben Lee is one of my favourite musicians-songwriters-poets-philosophers (Awake is the New Sleep shifted my way of seeing at the age of 15) so I was excited to learn that his new album Ayahuasca is being released – and that 100% of the proceeds will be donated to charity.
Ben was a guest on The Project the other night and he said something I thought was quite profound. Comparing his happy space to Adele's angst, Carrie Bickmore asked him, "Is being happy a good space to be in to write?", to which he replied:
"I think there are different kinds of music. I think there's music that comes from human emotion and psychic angst and all that and I think for that you need to be suffering.
I'm more interested in music that I believe already exists in the collective unconscious and I'm trying to relax and just grab it so I need to be happy for that."
Ben provides an answer to a question that has been plaguing me for a long while. Is it worth seeking both a "happy" life and an artistic one? Or are the two mutually exclusive?
Is it possible to write deeply and beautifully from a place of contentment?