Britt is back Stateside, but keeps her suitcase packed. And drunk-blogs about it.

Full disclosure. I am drunk-blogging at my local watering-hole, as I am pushed to the brink with Eternal Summer, always on the quest of finding air-conditioned establishments to seek refuge in (this is SURVIVAL, here, people, REAL SURVIVAL). At this current … Continue reading

britt starts over

Last time you heard from me, I was processing the traumatic event of watching the house I live in with my younger brother burn down. Now that the dust has settled (a way too relevant idiom to use, I know) and I have almost fully recovered from the event, I am experiencing a strange new giddiness about life that I cannot shake. (Not like I would want to.)

In some weird way, this whole sudden homelessness thing has been a blessing in disguise. This period of uprooting has offered me so many things that I wouldn’t have been able to discover and experience otherwise. And for that, I am so grateful.

First and foremost, I have the incredible opportunity of living with one of my very best friends, Elizabeth Evans.

we take our kombucha very seriously. we've been drinking a crap ton of it since I moved in.

we take our kombucha very seriously. we’ve been drinking a crap ton of it since I moved in.

Liz and I have some pretty epic living-together history, you guys. We roomed together in college (okay, so I wasn’t technically on the lease, but I essentially lived on the couch at Liz/Dani/Suzzane’s house throughout school) and for my first year after college.

We’ve also, of course, grown-up a lot since our last living-together adventure:

sorry for vandaulizing your room, Liz.

sorry for vandalizing your room, Liz.

i am SO much more growun-up and mature now, you guys.

i am SO much more grown-up and mature now, you guys.

But for real. We are ADULTS now. Liz even owns her own house and stuff. And has FOUR animals. Well, only three of them are hers, but still. I mean, the woman brews her own kombucha. She’s kind of a big deal.

Anyway. Yesterday Liz says to me: “Britt. It’s like my whole house is your walk-in closet. You’ve done pretty well for yourself.”

Truth. I should be on Cribs right now.

(But let us allow these fotografias speak for themselves.)

Check out my awesome Living-On-Air-Mattress-In-Living-Room-Suite, complete with fireplace, flat-screen TV, and cats:

living large.

living large.

Hotel Liz comes with free cats.

Hotel Liz comes with free cats.

Pretty legit, right? I should get my house burned down more often. I’m kind of loving this.

The first morning I woke up in Liz’s Living Room Suite, I had a cat sleeping on my back (Pancho), another cat sleeping on my legs (Queso), and a dog laying on the ground next to my face (Moe). It was awesome. I was kind of hurt that the third cat (Jasper) didn’t join in on the snuggle puddle, but I got over it. Jasper is the only animal not owned by Liz or her boyfriend Shane, so I didn’t hold it against him.

Liz also cleared out a coat-closet for me to use as my own personal closet:

not too shabby, huh?

not too shabby, huh?

God, she’s the best!! I’m pretty sure I have more closet and storage space available to me now than I had in the basement-closet-room at my brother’s college house (RIP, house). This is the most backwards Life-Upgrade I have ever experienced. So I’m going with it.

So yeah. As far as residing on a living-room air mattress in a house with 6 adults and 4 animals goes, I have won the jackpot. I am truly happy and oddly feel more settled and centered than I have in a really long time. Liz and I play/write music together almost every evening. We have lazy Sunday mornings where we drink jugs of kombucha, read tarot cards, and examine our aura colors over breakfast(#CatholicSchoolFail).  We watch crappy TV and listen to good music. I am inspired to eat better and exercise more. I am reminded what Family feels like. I could not dream of a better place to call home before moving to Los Angeles in 3 short months. Life is so crazy sometimes.

Speaking of life being crazy sometimes, check out what my past week was like:

My Week:

In the midst of trying to maintain (what was left of) my sanity while systematically going through everything I own after the fire (as all of my shit is currently scattered about Liz’s dining room, waiting to be sorted), life refuses to slow down. And that’s okay. I like it that way.

This week brought about three callbacks (two of which I booked, one of which I’m waiting to hear back from… take THAT, fire!), a full-time work week at the ‘ol day job, and a major writing binge I had to get out of my system. I also somehow found time to watch a couple new episodes of Arrested Development (YES!) and The Bachelorette (for SHAME). This whole “starting over” thing has given me such a renewed sense of energy and purpose…or perhaps I am just too afraid to slow down and process the state of my life and the scary changes ahead? Whatever. Either way, I am thankful for this constant movement. It at least reminds me that I refuse to sink.

In the Theatre Vertigo world, we now have three weeks of the “Aloha Say the Pretty Girls” run under our belts. We only have two weekends to go until we say goodbye to this wacky-ass play…!

Photo by Gary Norman

Photo by Gary Norman

Another highlight of my week was the release of this video on MTV Hive and elsewhere:

A year or so ago I had the pleasure of working with one of my very favorite bands, Hey Marseilles, on this music videoThese boys are mad talented and this video is incredibly beautiful. I simply cannot stop watching it. The song is called “Heartbeats” and it is my favorite track on their new album, “The Lines We Trace“. Please do yourself a favor and watch this powerful video. Watch it NOW.

…Okay. Did you watch it? Good. I can tell by the tears splattered all over your keyboard that you did. I TOLD you that shit is good!!

In other big news, I have officially set my Move-To-Los-Angeles date:

LA MOVEThat’s right! It’s ON!! I could not be more excited. And coming from a girl who was born on Friday the 13th (it all makes sense now, doesn’t it?), I’m pretty sure this is the luckiest moving date I could have chosen.

3.5 months. Holy crap. 3.5 months until I am reunited with my Dani and living in a  completely different place with a completely new life. As I was happy to read in Dani’s last post, we are both swimming in gratitude and love of life and are both excited to start very new chapters in our lives. (As in, the incredible Dani is leaving for an epic adventure to India this Friday… Is she awesome or what?!)

And to keep this gratitude train chugging along, for those of you wondering how my brother Nate is doing after the Epic House Fire of 2013, here is the update! He has moved into (free!) on-campus housing with his roommates until he finds a new house to live in and is starting a new job at my office next Monday (two Harris kids in the same office? Uh oh…)! Nate is currently focusing on making money to get back on his feet and to save up for new instruments. He’s got this. When it comes to music, the boy is determined.

And so, one day at a time, we journey on..!

…As long as I have enough kombucha for the road.

** #jesuiteducationforthewin #paganways

** #jesuiteducationforthewin #paganways

Thanks for reading, friends.

infinite rainbow love,

~britt

band of brothers, brothers and BANDS.

If there’s one thing Dani and I love most in the world, it’s music.

Truth!  One of the first things that Britt and I did together was to be in the musical “The Threepenny Opera.”  Needless to say, Britt played a beautiful angel in gold and I played a pimp.  Good times were had by all. 

PIMP HAT + boob make-up. Thank you, '08.

PIMP HAT + boob make-up. Thank you, ’08.

What else do we love most in the world, Britt?

… our rad BROTHERS. 

Hell yeah!!

That’s right, people. In one incredi-post, we are going to give you the perfect blend of brothers AND bands.

…Exactly.

This is my bro, Nate Harris.

He is not this blurry in real life. Well... most of the time.

He is not this blurry in real life. Well… most of the time.

And this is his band, Anachronda.

537302_148463088658090_369898579_n

Here they are playing at a kdup event.

They are pretty rad.

Here’s my bro, Eric Larson:

Eric isn’t really this blurry in real life either. He is however, this artsy and rad.

This is Red Hands Black Feet:

Red Hands Black Feet: post-rock pinball wizards.

Red Hands Black Feet brings you complex, subtle, and earth-defying soundscapes that will take you on a mothafuckin’ JOURNEY.  Through the universe.  And possibly your soul.  It’s a genre called “post rock”: think Sigur Ros meets Punk Rock meets Ravel meet Schoenberg.  Or just think about getting on a rocketship and launching into space.

Holy shit!!

In fact, they are currently developing an EP called “Hail Sagan” inspired by the history of space exploration.  (HOW RAD IS THAT??)  Rumor has it that the upcoming EP is full of surprises, including the possibility of introducing vocals to the already luscious RHBF sound. But don’t worry!  You don’t have to wait to enjoy RHBF in your life!  You can download their full album for free off  their website by giving any size of donation you feel like giving.  (Could it get any better? I don’t think so!)

I think I may be in new music heaven right now.

And for a final treat, here is an original song brought to you by me and Nate, out of the legendary basement closet-room itself:

Ahhhh!  A refreshing dose of new music!  Sure does a body good!

Damn right. Play us off, Jon.

ROCK.

enjoy your weekend,

dani and britt

dani talks musicians

There are many, many reasons why I admire Britt as an artist. One of them is this recent viral nugget, which is AWESOME.

Another reason, which you can see in this video, is the fearlessness and dedication with which she encounters her creative work.   The thing about acting is that it is hard to forget you’re doing it while you’re doing it.  It’s hard not to watch yourself in your head while you’re doing the thing that you’re supposed to be doing. (…My brain just imploded.)  But Britt beautifully gets lost in the imaginative joy of it all.  

I was reminded of this quality of Britt’s the other week when she mentioned her song-writing adventures with her brother, which will be happening a lot more now that they are ROOMIES!! WOOOOO!!!

 Have any of you out there in internet-land ever tried to write a song and totally failed to?  What was it that stopped you?  Even if you are in an empty room with no one watching, it takes a lot of courage to just express yourself freely, especially using music.  EVEN IF you have the courage to be honest enough with yourself to allow your truth to come out, EVEN IF you can own your point of view enough to express it: It is so easy to stop yourself, to judge your own skill as a musician, your voice, your rhyming abilities, whatever. 

I have never successfully written a song. But I do have a lot of musician friends, and I can’t express how absolutely precious it is to me when one of them pulls me aside and says, “Hey I just wrote this song–can I show you?”  This means that my badass, fearless friend has let something awesome coming pouring out of their soul, and I admire the hell out of it.  For example, I had the great “misfortune” of growing up with a very talented musician for an older brother.  In his current band, he writes sweeping, masterful 7+ minute long instrumental post-rock songs with Red Hands Black Feet, which I will now shamelessly pimp out:  

redhandsblackfeet.bandcamp.com 

If you have 7 minutes of leisure time in your life, they will take you on a soul-soaring journey.  Also, their album is free for the downloading.  PIMP.

In the spirit of admiring musicians, check out this excerpt from Ursula K. Le Guin’s 1986 commencement speech at Bryn Mawr, which I have been obsessed with lately:

“Early this spring I met a musician, the composer Pauline Oliveros, a beautiful woman like a grey rock in a streambed; and to a group of us, women, who were beginning to quarrel over theories in abstract, objective language – and I with my splendid Eastern-women’s-college training was in the thick of the fight and going for the kill – to us, Pauline, who is sparing with words, said after clearing her throat, “Offer your experience as your truth.” There was a short silence. When we started talking again, we didn’t talk objectively, and we didn’t fight. We went back to feeling our way into ideas, using the whole intellect not half of it, talking with one another, which involves listening. We tried to offer our experience to one another. Not claiming something: offering something.

How, after all, can one experience deny, negate, disprove, another experience? … People can’t contradict each other, only words can: words separated from experience for use as weapons, words that make the wound, the split between subject and object, exposing and exploiting the object but disguising and defending the subject.

People crave objectivity because to be subjective is to be embodied, to be a body, vulnerable, violable.”

Over a year ago I was having lunch with my friend Will, a mountain of a man, and I was seeking his advice about something; really floundering for words and struggling to communicate.  He just looked at me with this sort of empathetic amusement in his eyes and said, “It sounds like you’re not accepting the validity of your experience.”  Those words have been resonating with me ever since.  As our good friend Ursula says, “How, after all, can one experience deny, negate, disprove another experience?”   Musicians and songwriters, in a huge way, accept the validity of their experience and turn that into art.  I think that’s what all artists do, and it’s especially why I admire songwriters so much.  They offer their experience as their truth.  Here’s some more Ursula:

“Singing is one of the names of the language we never learn… Yes, but it can be speeches and science, any use of language when it is spoken, written, read, heard as art, the way dancing is the body moving as art. …you hear the coming together, the marriage of the public discourse and the private experience, making a power, a beautiful thing, the true discourse of reason. …This is their baby, this baby talk, the language you can spend your life trying to learn.”

That is what I am doing with my life.  I am trying to to learn this unlearned language, and offer my experience as my truth.  This blog thing is a part of that, so thanks for reading.

Imma have to end this post with some Gaga.  Whatever else you may say, she is artist who owns her point of view and turns it into some awesome shit.  Hot damn.