Could a single person use her voice to represent many?
Tout Seul dans la Forêt en Plein Jour, Avez-Vous Peur? (Alone in the forest in the middle of the day, are you scared? in English. Tout Seul for short) is the new record by WOELV, a musical project which consists of a single member, me, Geneviève Castrée.
I spent four months of 2004 traveling through North America, desperately hoping to find a place, which felt, like home in Canada. Québécoise since birth, my roots felt exhausted. I fell in love physically and geographically and all my possessions and I took roots in the
United States in 2005. That is where the record was made.
I found myself in a country where I had never thought I would live before in my life. In a country hooked to its conflicts as if they were the
only reason worth living. At first I was terribly shocked. I felt too pure for wars. Then thinking of it more I realized that I had a lot of
questions to ask:
I am a young North-American, privileged, and I try to follow what is happening, mixing-up the details like many of us. I spent my share of
time looking at the clouds, singing the praise of the animal world, writing poems in fogged-up windows, looking away... And what has
happened around me? Was I ever the witness of major injustices? Of violent explosions between individuals? Am I in a position to speak
of serious problems in others, to criticize? What is a war exactly? I am no part of any army, nor have I walked on a battlefield, yet my
mouth opened itself and the notes came out.
Tout Seul dans la Forêt en Plein Jour, Avez-Vous Peur? is my own private version of a work which wants to regroup humans who share the same fears. I put myself in the position of characters I never was (L'Homme Qui Vient de Marcher sur une Mine -the man who has just
stepped onto a landmine-) and people whom I know perfectly (SangJeune-young blood-). For one of the songs (Sous mon Manteau-under my coat) I borrowed sentences from the Koran as well as an Arabic-English phrasebook, then translated into French. The final effect leaves a childish song, but naïve?
The lyrics, sung in French, were translated in thirteen languages by people who offered their help for free; friends, friends of friends, family of friends, people I knew nothing about. I wanted to include the voices of people from everywhere. A web made by going from one person to the other, taking the risk of writing to strangers.
The music itself is dark and insistent. It is in a bad mood, yet it still has some hope left in its vocal chords that gives it its spine. The music
could sound naughty and too difficult at first, but really itwants to be like a nurturing force that very softly asks the questions we would not
want to hear otherwise.
Added to the record is a book of full-page illustrations. They are there to understand the stories that are told better. Tout Seul dans la Forêt en Plein Jour, Avez-Vous Peur? is a record about present times, but may very well be about what has happened in the past and what might just happen again in the future. Are you scared?
Note: It must be pointed out that this entire record is sung in the French language. A listener who does not speak French should benefit
from reading the translations of the lyrics included in the book. It is greatly recommended by the author.
*The "Damaged LP" is an LP in perfect shape that has been sent back to K because a corner of the jacket is bent & unsalable in stores. DISCOUNTED PRICE!*