Listening to Mika’s music and writing about it is my favorite thing to do. I enjoy writing about his television career as well but I miss his music and after seeing his lately studio updates it feels suitable to write about music again. A couple of days ago I listened to all four Mika albums one after another and it was an emotional thing to do and made me go through all kind of feelings, thoughts and memories. It made me even a little bit confused – it was almost hard to put things on the timeline – and so clearly to remember why I love his music.
Listening to Life In Cartoon Motion made me immediately wish I could have known a younger version of Mika. It made me wish I could have seen him on stage performing those songs for the first times, maybe even met him at the time he still had young person’s dreams and point of view. The confusing thing is that some of his most timeless songs like Any Other World were recorded that time. And he grew up but in No Place In Heaven I sometimes wonder if the singer is that grown-up man or a young boy and I can’t decide. I’ve said it before but age is a complicated thing.
In my imagination I picture young Mika with his long legs walking on a street, trying to look like everyone else, trying to look as normal as possible when in reality he was carrying a whole another world inside of his head. His mind was like a hidden, secret universe. It was expanding and had no limits in it. It was full of music and sounds, colors, people, characters and an endless amount of stories and it was the kind of place I had wanted to visit all my life. Relax gave me a door to enter it and every time I listen to the song I become emotional and a little bit teary and can’t help but thinking what if I hadn’t heard it. What if I hadn’t paid attention.
After discovering Mika’s music 2007 I watched Grace Kelly videos and can remember one acoustic clip especially well. Mika was sitting at his piano. He had beautiful long curls, a distinct profile and strong mouth. He was wearing a white shirt and had long pianist fingers and he looked young yet sophisticated. He started to play Grace Kelly and it was a pleasant surprise. His piano playing wasn’t sophisticated at all. It was quite rough. You know how he plays, sometimes he hits his piano so hard I feel almost sorry for the instrument. I thought he had character and that’s why I fell in love. He started to sing and his voice was everything. Everything. His mouth articulated words so clearly I couldn’t stop watching it, I was hypnotized for hours.
I remember booking a trip to London to see my first gig and how seeing him on stage was even better than I had imagined, better than any video could ever imply. I remember how I walked out of the venue after the gig every cell in my body filled with happiness and positive energy. I thought I should go to concerts more often. I felt I could do anything, I would never be tired again. I had discovered a secret energy source and I didn’t know if I should talk about it or stay quiet so no one would know about it and it would last longer.
I didn’t stay quiet. The world deserves to know this wonderful music exists and everyone, especially an artist this good, deserves to know they are loved and appreciated. Quality music can’t be used up. You don’t have to save good music to make it last longer, it can be listened again and again and it stays equally powerful.
Filling myself with live music energy is just one way to enjoy Mika’s music. I use his songs as small meditations almost every day. I listen to symphony versions of them and enjoy his voice and every instrument finding their places and magically my thoughts seem to find their places as well. It’s a clarifying experience, my thinking becomes clearer and it’s easier to focus.
LICM is like a collection of colorful animations but has also a darker side. Happy Ending is amazingly beautiful but don’t let it fool yourself, it’s a sad song. However, it was The Boy Who Knew Too Much that really made darkness and combining it with cheerful elements Mika’s trademark. Rain makes us dance but is actually a break up song. Toy Boy sounds like a nursery song but tells a cruel story. The third album The Origin Of Love shows a bit happier expression but still screams love is overrated in this God damn world.
The message of tolerance is important to me. Sometimes it’s hard to face the world we’re living in today. I’m afraid to open news pages and try to avoid social media as much as I can. There’s so much cruelty and hate in our every single day, people compete over things I couldn’t care less and day by day it’s more obvious we need someone like Mika to teach us how to understand and value ourselves and each other.
Gives me hope that someone like him tells us we are golden and this is love not war, explains nothing is only words because that’s how hearts get hurt and makes us live in the moment asking if you could look into the future would you. If you could see it would you even want to? Gives me hope to hear him singing about freedom and the true origin of love. Origin is actually one of the songs I appreciate most. It makes me feel light but I can put it in context. It sounds easy for him now but I know there was a long journey to it. X