The conception of The Long Way Home began once Ajay traveled from California to Maryland for knee surgery in December. Upon his return to Oakland three weeks later he knew he needed to be back in Maryland for various reasons. The main being his health, so he flew back New Years Eve to start the year on a good foot. Putting everything together in a rush; Ajay flew back on a Saturday night, the movers came on Sunday morning and by Monday he was driving back to Maryland. Ajay’s daunting task was to drive back in 10 days because he was due in India to begin a shooting a photo documentary. Arriving home the night before inauguration, the next evening saw him boarding a plane to India, it was a very emotional time experiencing the surreal of the situation. Wanting to experience India to the fullest and not absorb it while wearing headphones; he left his Ipod and guitar at home. Wanting to concentrate on photography and a thought process of being away from the guitar would lend to a creative period upon his return.
Within a week of being home he had X-rays which confirmed more necrosis in his left hip. Ajay has a disease; Avascular Necrosis, which was caused by too much prednisone during chemotherapy for Leukemia 9 years ago. He’s had 13 surgeries in total. To deal with the anxiety of waiting for the doctors to call with results he started writing music. Not wanting to write about what he was going through since no one really needs to here another sad song, he conceptualized a soundtrack to his travels.
By setting goals /limits of recording in one take with no punch ins, minimal overdubs and to write everything from scratch; these limitations would force him out of his comfort zone and record what he was feeling rather than thinking. If a note or beat was missed so be it, through experience we all grow to know nothing in life is perfect and its no secret modern technology (Auto-Tune, Beat Detective) in music is stripping it of anything meaningful. Capturing the performance and emotion was the point, not the polish and sheen. Wanting to convey the sparseness along with the peacefulness of traveling was the highest priority sonically and arrangement wise.
Nearly a year after a hip replacement and following decision to commit to photography fulltime while putting music on the backburner; Ajay had found a way for both of them to coexist artistically. Somehow in a little over one year; he had managed to have one hip replaced, holes drilled in the other hip and knee, a graft to later right what the previous surgery couldn’t, drive X-Country twice and visit India once. All those experiences have lead Ajay Malghan to create this piece of work; whether they’re good or bad is irrelevant, because he turned them into something great.
- Break Your Fall
- Moving On
- New Mexico