Left Bank is growing y’all! Take this moment to get acquainted with our v. new, v. awesome new writer—William.
I grew up knee deep in the brackish estuaries of the Chesapeake Bay, in the equal parts lame and quirky town of Norfolk, Virginia. The only essential and fundamental fact about my childhood is that is was steeped with music. My grandparents were classical musicians and professors, my aunt a singer, my uncle a cellist, and my father a reformed opera baritone turned folkie. Family gatherings inevitably ended in the living room, where we sat in a circle and took turns leading any song that came to mind. As soon as I could hold an instrument, I picked up any and every one I could and started playing.
Music continued to follow me as I grew up and moved away. I routinely joined bands and they routinely fell apart. I wrote about music. I shared music. I dreamt about music. I never thought it would ever be pushed to the back burner in favor of other parts of my life.
I graduated from a publishing course in 2016 and immediately moved to New York to work in editorial. I buzzed with excitement on the train into the city, but soon started drowning in the anxieties of starting a new life. It’s funny how hard it is to leave the comforts of home, even if that is exactly what you are trying to do. It’s even funnier how losing communities affect you in a deeper way than losing a physical place. I never regretted moving and starting a new life for myself, but my God, working in book publishing didn’t touch me the way music did.
Moving to Brooklyn left me feeling hollow. I was completely uprooted from my musical community and didn’t realize the impact it would have on my heart. It took too many months and too many pints to discover what was missing from my life, and why I felt like a piece was missing. It was quite embarrassing to realize, duh, it’s music you miss you absolute rube. And after digging, I found sects of the Brooklyn musical community where I’m welcome, and that I adore.
Music is my most essential form of expression. Harmonies show me the beauty of what can be accomplished by humans working together. Lyrics express more than the words at a glance. The combination rages against internal and external demons and helps me feel satisfied when I’m having another manic episode at 4:00AM.
And that’s why Left Bank Magazine. I want to find more music for myself. I want to find it for you. I want to share it for the musicians who create it. Open up your ears, folks. Here we go.
A few of my all-time faves …
Nights by Frank Ocean
Cutting My Fingers Off by Turnover
Archie, Marry Me by Flyte
I Saw Water by Tigers Jaw
Math and Love by Bombadil