The birth of a Goat Record
A couple of years ago I was already thinking of making a record dedicated to the “Pinturas Negras” by Goya. The idea, quite simply, was to match every painting with a song and enclose them in an album called “La quinta del Sordo”, like the house on whose walls Goya painted the Pinturas. But something didn’t match then and the songs stayed still all hanging on the walls of my mind.
Then, in September 2012, I took part in a workshop in music, painting and sculpture organized by the two well-known friends of humanity Andrea Bolner and Paolo Dolzan. Sleeping, eating and playing in Paolo’s mill – who, beside a honorary miller, is also a mighty painter – the ideas about my project began to take a sharper silouette. Finally better organized, a few months ago they took their final shape.
In fact, I discovered that the main character of the work I had in mind was not inspired by Goya but, instead, by Paolo Dolzan himself; for the specific occasion of the recording, he was the crazy painter who covered the walls of his medieval mill with dark frescoes. The crazy painter took inspiration for his works from the visions that a black goat commanded him from the huge rooms of his marble palace, built in the same place and at the same time in which the painter lived in his mill. All this happened in the depths of a dense forest with rivers and water spirits checking the right unfolding of the story.
The idea of the record then started to materialize and I began to believe that sooner or later I could even record it. The title was born as “The old mill and the crazy painter” and so has remained until today, as well as the division in four parts of the order of the songs: The Marble Palace; Visions; The forest, the valley, the river; The study.
If you have patience, in later posts, I will give details of the structure of this project, the progress in the recording and the “construction” of the disc (Saturday and Sunday July 27 and 28 should be the first two recording sessions). As in a sort of diary, I will describe this voyage on board of a marble ship with a goat in the hold and a visionary painter poised on the crow’s nest of the mainmast.
“The old mill and the crazy painter” (Prologue)
This is the prologue, the introduction to the disc.
“In an old mill at the bottom of a valley choked with woods, a crazy painter was pursuing his visions. These suggested him whispering in the ears of painting the huge frescoes that filled the walls of the many rooms of the mill.
The strokes of his brush followed the secret beat of the sap in the trees and drew dark images of mythological figures, languid and young girls and vast territories with dry and unfecond land.
Next to the mill, to hold the big wheel turning in the river’s waters, the painter built a study where to free his art. Moving it raised clouds of dust and earth that looked like small storms above the concrete floor.
At the same time, exactly in the same time and in the same place, in a huge marble palace big as cathedral a black fleece goat commanded the painter’s visions and ordered his art not to miss even the smallest of the last angels still alive … ”
P.S. The starting dates of registration are postponed to September! The goat is dead, long live the goat!
“Aquelarre” will be the first track on the disc.
It is inspired by the homonymous painting by Goya (Pinturas Negras) portraying a black goat surrounded by a crowd of people who seem magnetically attracted by the animal. I imagined what the speech which the beast was entertaining the audience could have been and it turned out to be a kind of invitation, almost an enrollment, to seek the last live remaining angels hidden in his palace of marble and deliver them to his presence.
(the speech of the goat for the death of the last remaining angels)
Let me walk on your memories of when you were a child,
tie them tight to my tail
Now close slowly your eyes and imagine the worst thing your minds allow
Be honest and admit you do not love yourself enough to be able to stare into your eyes without being a little ashamed of your useless audacity
And be cautious in judging this as harmless, simple, light and avoidable like a rainy evening by the sea
Now go and fill the pockets of your jackets with the smoky lives of the angels who are already dead
And let those still alive hide well in the dark corners of the building
My marble palace built behind your eyes
so that I can seek them
so that I can find them
and can draw crosses on their bones
and can laugh at seeing them evaporate in the mist
and can dress up with the dark shadow of the woods
and can catch them by surprise whispering one to another words of courage
before with my hoof I blow up their little hearts
full of feathers and love
and can l thank you all
one by one
for your help and your tacit approval
and can ask as a last resort
“What is the Truth? ”