Bucket Full of Sadness, Bucket Full of Joy


Bucket Full of Sadness, Bucket Full of Joy

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The Museum keeps challenging me, surfacing questions about who we are, what this actually is and can be.

A latte from the Marazocco machine? (Thank you Dark Matter). Is it post punk? Well, look at that Italian design, certainly industrial and anyway, I can’t work my six new museum jobs without more caffeine. Fuel is essential, and it comes in many forms. There have been times when I have been walking on air – encouraged by donations, or, perhaps not the donations as much as the trust from where they come.

And such joy this last week, significant donations, more digital screens, more visitors from all over the world, the AfterSchoolMatters workshop, sitting in the studio listening, then hearing about encounters between founders, proud to wear their shirts but happier to chat and bathe in it. And how do we define balance or even attempt to achieve it…..Sweet and sour, hot and cold, this week, a bucket overflowing with pure joy and a bucket full of deep sadness.

I love the connections, new and surprising all over. But the risk, exposure, chances of illness wounding or accidental something is multiplied with a larger network. I sat in the studio a few times this week listening – sometimes with others sometimes without. I’m loving being back in the studio and the way it makes me feel. I’m good at that shit, hot complicated dub mixes on the fly, playing the studio like a drum kit, pushing analog stuff that people don’t know about past limits I don’t care about. Low end glitched hypnosis.

So, I thought about this guy Craig who had visited from the west coast in December of last year after purchasing a listening session with me. The archives are vast and surprising and underline the power of music to weave itself into our lives and become part of us.

Craig had particularly wanted to hear some unreleased tracks from 1981-ish PiL Flowers sessions, and he was not disappointed. I spent longer than intended or agreed to. He was so connected to the music and, honestly so was I – it felt cruel to stop.  We eventually did stop, and I left him with whoever was around at the Museum so he could get his cab and I could work on something else at the house.

I kept getting alerts and seeing him appear on the front camera outside, and after a few of these over the next 90 minutes, I called to see what was up – he was having difficulty with a cab so I eventually sent an uber up to take him to his hotel. The next day he asked if he could return and listen to the song Vampire again – it had really affected him. I was noodling around over there so I said yes and we hung out for a while listening. It’s not time that I minded spending – I don’t otherwise just sit and listen – so it’s chill for me too mostly. After a while I chose to drive Craig back to the hotel rather than wait to see if there were problems again – it seemed easier to take a few minutes and it was nice to chat. He sent me a nice email:
“Thank you Martin for your hospitality and generosity, it is much appreciated. I enjoyed every minute of it. I appreciate the opportunity. Music is, was and always WILL be the most important thing in my life.” -Craig
We chatted about doing some stuff – he wanted to hear more and had some extensive bootlegs I was on that he wanted to send. In the middle of so much going on this week, I sent him a quick note – excited for him to see how much everything had progressed in the short amount of time since December. A bucket full of joy. He didn’t respond. Instead a note from his partner Laura. A bucket full of sad.
There has been so much filling both buckets these last few weeks, Anastasia Payne killed in a rollover car accident with husband Sean still critical but alive, Matthew Lee Clark suffering a stroke down in Texas, and plenty of scares around for others who know you are in my thoughts. I’m not trying to bum you out with this, but I needed to talk about it. It has affected me – this combination. I’m okay, I don’t want to stop the connections for fear of the disconnections, I think I want more.

I asked Justin Pearson & Deaf Club to spend the night on Sunday, and that helped. The idea that the Museum could help touring bands is appealing to me and not something I had thought about previously. The place is growing and developing organically and, not just to save a night’s hotel (although that’s not nothing), but for a traveling band to be in a safe place to stop and feel the vibes, fall asleep under Johnny Rotten’s piercing gaze, the drifting smell of the Killing Joke piss stained backdrops, or Trent’s bandana passport photograph feels like something we would do and a regular museum wouldn’t – so that’s good. Differentiation in all things, I think.
So, night night Johnny, night night Dick Clark, night night Easy Nuns, night night Souixsie, night night Margot, night night Raven and Bill and goodnight Craig Eyler, bass player, partner and constant companion to Laura who passed in his sleep on April 30th 2023.
A Happy belated Mother’s Day to all!
Come visit, get involved, it’s magic.

Upcoming Events

Jackalope Coffee and Tea House Presents:
Block Sabbath Block Party
Saturday, May 20, 12PM CST
**Be on the lookout for upcoming open houses! We will be hosting a pre-block party hang this Saturday at 11AM. Ticket links will be going out very soon!

The Sean Payne Benefit Show

Saturday, June 3 7PM
Downstairs (at Subterranean)
2011 W. North Ave Chicago, IL 60647
Ages 21+ Tickets Here



Copyright © 2023 Martin Atkins, All rights reserved.

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