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What 2023 Was Supposed to Be Like, and What Will Happen From Now On.

What 2023 Was Supposed to Be Like, and What Will Happen From Now On.

Hey,

I hope you’re doing well! It’s Saturday morning, 1st day of July, as I’m writing this letter to you, realizing we have already reached half of the year 2023… So many things happened already in 6 months, and pretty much all of what happened was not planned at all on our end, and everything we had planned, well… It just didn’t happen at all! What a journey!

I’m sitting in my hotel room listening to Swans’ new album with the song “The Beggar Lover (Three)” on repeat, as it’s so good and inspiring! Only two days left here, meaning I’ll be back in Montreal when you read this! As I shared with you last week, Alex and I are taking at least three walks per day on the beach and this week, as we got more rested and aligned with the reason we both decided to come here, we started having deeper conversations about the past 6 months and the 6 upcoming ones!

Pretty much every year since we started working together, Alex and I would take two weeks on an island somewhere in December in order to plan the following year on every aspect of what we do artistically, what we want to release, and so on. Last December was no exception and we spent two amazing weeks speaking of the plans for 2023. I just went through my notes and this year was supposed to go like this:

• January: Alex’s heart surgery. Jeff travels to London and Eurosonic Festival
• February: Alex recovers. Jeff travels to Tangier
• March: Alex recovers. Jeff travels to New York and Austin for music conferences (New Colossus + SXSW)
• April: Band gets together to get ready for summer festivals and the new album
• May: Finalize the rehearsals and album pre-production
• June: European Festivals
• July: European Festivals
• August: Band in Tangier to finalize work on the new album
• September: Start releasing new music and videos
• October: Getting ready for headline tour + release of 2nd single and video
• November: Headline tour + album launch
• December: Headline tour + annual gathering & 2024 planning

Well… 2023 was supposed to be the greatest year of our lives! Turned out otherwise in terms of new recordings, touring, and album releases, as you all know now! As Alex and I went for a walk earlier this week, I thought it could be great to have a conversation about the fact that we’re in the middle of the year and to see how Alex truly feels about what’s ahead as we’re entering the second half of this enigmatic and unpredictable 2023.

 

Jeff: Today is the last day of the first half of 2023, and I wanted to tell you how proud I am of you. I know it’s been the hardest of all years thus far and how much of a long way you’ve been traveling in your heart and in your mind, but the person you’re becoming truly is impressive and inspiring. I feel like you’re way more at peace with your own self and with the people around you as well.

Alex: Thank you for your words… It’s been a hell of a year, brother! I’ve been digging and sharing a lot about the notion of letting go over the past few years, almost since the beginning of our journey, but these past few months, I discovered a much deeper sense to it all and I didn’t really take the time to make sense of it all just yet… But this is something I want to do in the upcoming weeks.

Jeff: Of course! And I know it’s not the time yet to have this conversation. But I wanted to ask how you’re envisioning what’s left of the year, if I may..!

Alex: You always can, brother, there are no questions you can’t ask me. I might answer that the time hasn’t come to talk about that, but at least, you can always ask!

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the months ahead, which is why it was so great to come here and remind ourselves, and myself mainly maybe… But I realized through our conversations how much I want to share and be more out there, available, reachable, and closer to my people, my friends, and my community, creating moments around conversations and music.

Jeff: This is amazing! How would you like to do this?

Alex: I don’t know yet, I was hoping you would come up with some of your revolutionary ideas…! I was kinda counting on you for that! And don’t tell me you didn’t think of something before asking me that question… I might still be recovering and taking loads of meds, but I'm still quite clever, man!

Jeff: Not at all…! (I gently and evidently lied!)

Alex: Yeah, right!

We both laughed a lot!

Jeff: I was of course hoping and wishing you’d say so, as I have a few ideas for sure, but it has to be something you truly want to do, as I know you’ll have a lot on your plate already around the book you’re writing, the new album we have to work on and this personal journey of yours you’re embarking on as you just mentioned.

Alex: I really want to be available and for us to have conversations about what we’re after, listening to, reading, and to invite everyone to not only listen to us but to be actively and entirely taking part in it. Let’s figure something out, but let’s do this more often than not in the upcoming months! I have so much great news to start with, then, I want to have deeper moments with my friends!

Jeff: Right on, man!!! This is so cool! Let’s do it!!! Here are my ideas… (You’ll know about it later… Sorry!)

 

This walk with Alex was the only one that day as we reached the 10k steps in a single walk! We were on fire about this idea and my technical ways of making it happen, which, I’m sure, you’ll enjoy a lot! I can’t tell you precisely how this will work out, but trust me, the next 6 months will be amazing, creative, soulful, and above all, will allow a proximity we never encountered outside of the concerts we did last summer!

Alex and I had numerous conversations like this one, which I will share with you as the time will come! We don’t control much down here, but we control how we handle the now and what we do with the time offered to us. 2023 is far from being over, and the best is yet to come on our end! I’m so thrilled about it all, since, even if nothing happened as planned, trust me, we’re in a much better position than we’ve ever been, and this, on every possible level!

Great conversations between Alex and I, you and Alex, you and I, and so on, are in the making. You’ll know everything when the time comes! You have my word!!!!

Let’s be great to one another!

Your Host and Friend,
Jeff

PS: Happy Canada Day (July 1st) and Independence Day (July 4th) to all my fellow Canadians and my American friends out there! :)

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