Can We Begin This Again?

Continuing the series of jazz demos I recorded with Steve Talaga, here is something a little different. “Can We Begin This Again?” is perhaps at the edges of jazz, depending on how you define jazz. It leans toward the pop side of things: Laufey*, Sade, Norah Jones, or Bruce Hornsby, for example.

More notable are the lyrics. It’s so easy to get stuck in the trappings of genre: heavy metal is angry, singer-songwriters are introspective, and jazz is about romance, found and lost. In this song, we’re listening in on two lovers arguing. There is the immediate need to deescalate and take up the conversation later, the realization that a lot of our conflict is based on past events rather than what your partner said or did, and the hope that friction is one of the things that makes a relationship go deeper. In that way, it’s a lot like the Williams Brothers’ song, “Friction.”

1. Can we begin this again
when we’ve both had some sleep,
some time to cool off
and some space to think?

This is just going to end
the way it began:
with so many words
we’re going to regret.

Words that are heard as an echo
of voices that hurt us long ago.

Can we begin this again?

2. We can’t begin this again
as if we’d just met;
as if there’s nothing to lose
and the cement is still wet.

As time goes on
ruts start to form,
but love can grow deep
as the path is worn.

Can we grow closer still through the failure and pain?
Offer the tender parts of our hearts every day?

Can we begin this again?

*For a fascinating introduction to Gen-Z phenom Laufey, see Adam Neely’s video, Is Laufey Jazz?

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