Journal Entry No. 4
I turned our open garage into my workspace today. The dry season has started, and I decided to move outside because my sweat kept on dripping onto our couch because it was so hot. I didn’t want to continue trashing it and be scolded by my mother.
I set up my laptop at a blue, round table, and a China-made speaker under it. While working, I wanted to put on blast my Spotify playlist, titled “Soul on Fire,” which I curated months ago. I regularly listened to its track list on my way to work before the pandemic erupted. The playlist is made up of songs from artists from the soul and blues genre or whose songs are infused with blues or soul stylings.
Hours later, it became apparent that this setup had allowed me to be at my most productive since I started working from home. It was cozy, and the landscape of trees and shrubs was a refreshing sight. Despite all the crazy, distracting stuff happening in the world, I felt pretty pleased with myself.
When my shift ended, I played “The Gamber” by Kenny Rogers, who passed away the other day. I grew up listening to Rogers because my parents always played his records when I was little. However, I first heard of “The Gambler” only in December 2019 when I went to San Francisco, California, for work. On my first night there, I went to a blues bar where a band played the song and almost everyone in the bar was singing along. Hearing the band perform the beautifully written lyrics and the foot-stomping melody of the song deeply moved me. What crept into me was even better than the sensation I feel whenever I watch my favorite local drag queens perform at Obar, Ortigas.
Anyway, it felt right to play the song at the end of my shift. As a celebration for a productive day, and for Rogers’ remarkable work that has served as a soundtrack to the many special moments of my life.
I recorded a cover of “The Gambler” minutes later upon reading about Rogers’ death. You can find it here if you’re interested.