‘I am your mind’ parts 1 & 2, Roy Ayers Ubiquity II (Virgin Ubiquity II: Unreleased Recordings, 1976-1981, Rapster Records, 2005)

Part one, originally released on Ayers’ 1973 Virgo Red album (Polydor)  

with its rich, almost excessive bassline and the vocals hidden, almost totally with Ayers doing his best to teach, to tell and inform. (I always feel sorry for his paramour at the time of these recordings, as he can be so harsh and so open about the failures in their relationship, alongside his lack of feeling and desire to escape, while being ever so genteel and elegant in his expression. “Dippy doo, run, run, run/Dippy doo, run, run, run.”)  

Many of the reactions to ‘I am your mind, part II’ below the video are excited by what they see to be the persona Ayers takes on and his apparent domination, manipulation of a woman. But when I first heard it I somehow skipped the ‘sister’ and thought he was speaking to other men, speaking of the need for self-determination in a psychological sense; in other words, I thought it was something much more collective and political. I still think that you can respond to the lyrics in this way, even if it is apparently directed to a lover, a woman he is criticising, while calling her his good friend, before saying that he will leave her, or she will leave him. It remains ambiguous, they are both running away. 

Whatever, it doesn’t matter. This is extraordinary on every level. That line ‘tell me something to make me feel better’ is extremely honest and self-revealing.  

If you believe in yourself
You'll know the real you
It's coming from within
Sincerely, sincerely
You subject yourself to being vulnerable
Not knowing why you fall in love
And so you become
What you are made to become
It's not at all fair that I feel as I do
Tell me something to make me feel better

My sister, I am your mind. Within you there's a never-ending magnitude of infinite strength, wisdom and will. You travel my roads through life never knowing your own true reality because my thoughts remain like distant quasars. You abuse me by never letting me say and do as I feel. Our thoughts split from love affairs to choice of friends. We argue like two enemies, yet we are good friends.

Now, there are moments when we harmonize with each other, and become one with nature and reality. But these times are few. When after you have replenished yourself, the fear of the truth sets in. We split, and you start to run again. Running, running, running. Running through women, men, jobs, people and life looking for the answer when I had it all along. But I smile... because I am your mind.

I was your mind yesterday; I am your mind today; and I'll be your mind tomorrow. And as our end draws near we will become closer. But you and I, you and I, we will never be one, for I will part from you and you will part from me; you finding another mind and I another soul. And we'll travel on and on.

By the way, I need more than sex to nourish my equilibrium. But I do need sex. I also need sun, trees, stars, creativity and love. But you saturate my soul with too much of one and not enough of the other. Therefore, I cry. But why do we cry? Because tears cleanse the windows of our minds. I am your mind.

Tell me something to make me feel better
All your thoughts inside your mind wanting to be free

Well, now you've got the chance to let your mind grow... and be free. Because the music is just trying to say things to free your mind. And if you let your mind be free, then you can understand mine. There's no need to be afraid of me. I want to be your friend. I'm just trying to give you music from deep, deep, deep within.

And on and on, and on and on

Tell me something to make me feel better

All of your dreams can become reality. My dial reaches full, but you've only been turning me halfway. Turn me up, and alpha and theta waves will spew from your pores. Knowledge, peace, happiness and prosperity will be placed at your feet. Let's, let's create. Solve. Love. Accomplish. And unify. As-Salaam-Alaikum.

Coda: