July 27, 2021

Can We Transcend Our Culture in the Imagination?

David Latto

SongDaydreaming, 2020

This song was written by me, a Scottish man, not long after lockdown commenced in 2020. I was bored of walking the same streets, the grey weather of early spring, the biting North Sea wind, the daily repetitions of interactions, the rote nature of life. I wanted to escape but no escape was possible. I started thinking about cultures different from ours, more comfortable with emotion, more passionate, more expressive. I wonder if the climate here and a long history of religion has forced us to supress our emotions in a way. Daydreaming is about exploring in the imagination what is not available in real life. In my imagination I am in an idealised South America, dancing. In real life, I would be incongruous there but in the imagination I can be whoever and wherever I want to be. I am not restrained by my culture, I am not required to act, suppress or appease. I have become interested in the paintings of Fabian Perez. He describes his work as neo-emotionalism. I think of this song as a kind of attempt at neo-emotionalism in song. A desire to escape tedium. To inhabit a soulful space.