Produced by: Dutchyyy
Album: "The Uproot"
Year Created: 2015
Song Released: March 6, 2015 (soundcloud only)
After losing my mind living in Los Angeles (2012-2014) then having my spirit crushed moving back to Tampa Bay in record time, I ended up Traversing to New York summer of 2014. For more context & to avoid redundancy I've attached an Article on what followed that move to catch up and fill in the blanks surrounding this songs backstory.
Caught up? Let's continue....
In February of 2015, My Pop's (Ziggy) who was the caretaker and lived on the property of Sam's Point Preserve for nearly a decade was blind sighted after receiving a call that the private nature preserve was purchased by the state and they would be replacing him as caretaker with a park ranger (my pops was chef, who by fate was originally offered this lifechanging position and opportunity at his fathers funeral (My Pop Pop) My pop always said he felt like that was his fathers final gift to him, so to hear news that he was losing his home and job was devastating. To add to the stress, This was place my father and I reconnected and closely bonded after nearly 15 years of bad blood and no communication. We were both so happy and at peace on that mountain. My family has always been poor, my father worked hard his entire life, after nearly being killed working as prison guard before I was born, he shifted to his passion of being a cook. He worked multiple chef jobs and owned a hot dog stand when we lived in New Jersey. I ended up moving to Tampa when I was 5 years old with my grandparents, My Mother and younger Brother moved down a year later, and Father moved down a year after that. He never liked Florida, and being far from his family but he worked every single day, never taking a sick day, He opened a NY pizza shop in Tampa "Ziggy's Pizzeria" which closed down after his business partner robbed him and fled the country. After that he worked endlessly as a cook at a sports pub in Town n Country. He worked hard his entire life, just didn't work smart. When I was 14 years old my parents divorced and pops moved back to NY. As A teenager, I didn't understand the context... all I knew was he abandoned my mother, brother and me, which my mother was not ready for which resulted in me having to grow up fast and take on the parent roll. So I resented my pops for nearly my entire teenage and adult life span.
After reuniting on the mountain, I learned the context behind their getting divorced and him moving back to NY and realized I wasted my whole life being angry at him for something beyond his control. He always felt shame and guilt he was never in a position to help his children out in life financially after our child support ended.
So now here we are, reconnected, deeply bonded with mutual respect and that shame and guilt melted away as he saw me flourish creative and spiritually being on that mountain with him. So finding out he was being displaced and Uprooted with almost no notice, all he could think about was me, but NY is expensive AF. Especially the area we lived, which he could not leave because his mother (my grandmother) lived close by with dementia and he had to be close to take care of her. We searched far and wide and nothing was even close to realistic or affordable and we had to be out of there in 30 days. I absolutely didn't want to move back to Tampa or Los Angeles so I offered to split rent but we just couldn't find anything in time except a small guess house attached to a friend of a friends house that we could only move to temporally.
On March 16th 2015 the caretaker house was fully empty and we were about to drive off when he asked if I wanted to walk through one last time to say goodbye.
I asked him if he would give me 1 hour in the house alone to say goodbye in a way that would help me process this abrupt change the only way I know how. Making Music.....
I unpacked my Laptop and my portable JBL speaker and walked up the 3rd story Attic I had been living in and creating in the past year. I loaded up one of my fathers favorite songs and set the timer... One Hour.
After I expressed, I walked out to the jeep in tears and said "we don't even have internet so I can't properly stamp this moment in time" He reminded me that there was internet in the welcome center and he had to leave the keys in there anyway so I could use the internet to do what I needed to do.
A few minutes later, I documented my farewell on SoundCloud.
and thus, "The Mountain" was born.
We didn't have much time we were able to live in the guest house we moved to and saw the stress my pops was under trying to find a place for us both where I would be able to make music and I made the tough decision of moving back to Tampa with the plan to move back to NY when I could afford to do so.
This return to Tampa was soul crushing, but lead to the re-birth of my DailyRambles (The Reluctant Clap) series... I ended up working a contract at a hospital in NY in spring of 2016 and ended up visiting my Pops in new place (A basement he was renting for very cheap in an amazing house less than two miles away from where we used to live) He was very happy and he wouldn't have gotten that place If he had me to worry about also so it made my choice to leave feel like it was destined, which helped. I was only supposed to visit a few days after my contracted ended but ended up staying for a month, working on the cassette version of the album I had just released digitally "Traversal" Shortly after returning back to Tampa, I was offered a place to live in Los Angles, so once again I was a rolling stone.
I miss that mountain so much, I often think of what life would be like if we didn't have to move, I had access to free healthcare, I was super happy but would I trade all of turmoil, discomfort and pain that Lead to everything I've created musically since if I could turn back time and stop the state from acquiring the nature preserve?... Not a chance....... because I know transmuting my experiences good or bad into art ripples out and helps others navigate through life.
Thank you listening and taking the time to read.
If you are interested in digesting further context and world building surrounding my life and artistic career. I'll be documenting photo's, videos, artifacts more consistently here:
Love, Light & all that Jazz.