Tag Archives: mary kastle

Why nesting is a great tool for self-acceptance

Why nesting is a great tool for self-acceptanceSo I’m a few weeks away from having my second baby! I’m finally getting into ‘nesting’ mode and I’ve had an epiphany about how it can be a great tool for self-acceptance and coming to terms with the past. And hey, what good is an epiphany if you don’t share it, right? 🙂

I’ve realized that nesting should NOT be reserved for expecting mamas. The benefits of slowing down, cleaning random corners of the house, and sifting through old remnants of finished projects has forced me on a trip down memory lane, which can be fun at any stage of life.

And since summer is on the horizon, it seems like a perfect opportunity to finally dig into longstanding clean-out-the-closet sort of tasks and give yourself the time and space to reflect on where you’ve been and what you’ve been doing. Life can get so busy that we rarely take the time to debrief after projects, let alone consciously integrate what we’ve learned into our lives. Often we’ve barely finished one thing before we’re jumping onto the next.

One thing I’ve learned in looking back is that I’ve done a lot of work over the years! One of my projects before this baby arrives has been to put up my music on Youtube. And in listening to all those old tracks, mostly from Beneath the Folds (the album I made with Steve Dawson in 2010 which is – eep! – 6 years old already!) I realized how different of a person and musician I am now, both in sound, perspective, and relationship to the world. It’s awkward and uncomfortable to go back and listen to yourself after so much time, but also sweet in that you can hear the earnestness and passion, despite the clumsiness of youth.

The other lesson is that if approached from a place of genuine curiosity and self-acceptance, looking back on your old stuff can really solidify what you loved and what you’re ready to let go of. It can help you define who you are now and where you want to take your work in the future. And that perspective is worth gold in my opinion, considering how hard it is to get any perspective on your own work and life in the first place.

So, whether or not you’re about to have a baby (haha), I would encourage you to pick a little corner of your house or your computer (god knows they are repositories of files!), and start digging through. See what you find and what you might still be willing to put out into the world. It will probably even spark new ideas for creative pursuits and/or ideas for how you can reframe old ideas with a more mature and grounded vision.

And if you need a soundtrack for your nesting adventures, check out this old track I found. A remix of my tune ‘Drop Your Cover’ that I originally released as a bonus track off Beneath the Folds. Remixed by the amazing Chris Gestrin, it’s still one of my favourite tracks on that record.

Enjoy the summer amigos! 🙂

How to teach music (& how Whiplash failed us)

how to teach music whiplash failed us mary kastle musician bowen island jazz pop soul folk singer-songwriterIf you are interested in music, then you’ve probably seen the movie Whiplash by now. It’s taken me a while to process my feelings about it because it was so deeply triggering for me. I’m sure anyone who’s been through jazz school had at least a few head-nodding moments throughout it.  Continue reading

[WRITING] Interview with Andy Sheppard from Find the Others

I’ve made another foray into music journalism! I recently had the chance to interview Bowen Island musician Andy Sheppard and talk about his new project Find the Others. They just released a fantastic new album called “Empire of Time”, and we chatted about the making of it, along with how he approaches songwriting, and the partnerships that took him to Iceland. Continue reading