by John Zay

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‘Shadows’ was written and conceived while I was living abroad in Hamburg, Germany in the midst of playing late night gigs while struggling with my own dark period. Reading the news back home was often depressing. It seemed like there was shooting after shooting and all I could think of was what drives people to this level of insanity. There was some personal loss going on for me at the same time that it all seemed to be compounding in the dark winter of Germany. The American culture can be so all consuming that it is hard to be objective about what is going on. But when I stepped out of it I found myself feeling sad for so many on a hamster wheel of greed while their creative gifts are being neglected. Also knowing first hand that there are a host of natural remedies suppressed by governments that have profound effects on a person’s emotional and spiritual well being pushed my anger to another level. I had to surrender to what I couldn’t control and ‘Shadows’ is the expression of that.

The video was shot in NY by my friend and director Alex Engel. After discussing concepts one day it all came together organically that evening with an idea Alex and art director Phoebe Doran came up with and a trip to the art store. We just blasted the song and I sang it over and over at full volume while staring straight into the camera. I wanted the listener have my attention while I ignored what was happening to my face. We weren’t planning on using Phoebe’s hands but it worked so well Alex put it in. It’s there to represent the hidden feminine energy, the energy of creation that is trying to emerge from the Shadows and be heard. Engel also had some b-roll footage he shot from a personal project of Actor Ray Karl that blended into the story line perfectly.

From the video’s opening frame my stare is meant to have you locked in. My face proceeds to transform into a host of Shadow figures representing the parts of ourselves and others we want to deny. The soul which hasn’t been nurtured that can lead to turmoil within and chaos without. Shadows is an anthem for the unseen within ourselves and the ones that are let down by a society trying to pin them into a mold. These are the ones for whom a Shadow falls on the soul…


-Lyrics & Music by John Zay

I see the pain
in all the world
it burns my heart inside

Children hurt
lives destroyed
I can't make sense of why

As healing means
within in our reach
are hidden from us all the time
Frozen - with all your dreams
a shadow falls on the soul
Taken - away from your home
and left out in the cold
As one gets hurt
another knows
we've stepped into a new game

But all this means
is transparency
will give our shadows their say

Frozen - with all your dreams
a shadow falls on the soul
Taken - away from your home
and left out in the cold
When will this end...
as sickness breathes and fear runs high
There's no one left to offend...
A battles yet to come
What have we done?
Frozen - with all your dreams
a shadow falls on the soul
Taken - away from your home
and left out in the cold

Breaking - from all your ties
you're running out of breath
A measured move - complete with the news
you've had enough of all this senseless death..

A shadow falls on the soul...


released October 1, 2014
John Zay Maschio - Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards
Rico Bowen - Bass
Jan Ole Jönsson - Drums

Produced & Recorded by John Zay in Hamburg Germany
& Sagres, Portugal.
Additional Recording by Jan Ole Jönsson in Hamburg, Germany.
Mixed & Mastered by John Zay in New York.



all rights reserved


John Zay Santa Fe, New Mexico

Vocalist, Guitarist, Multi-Instrumentalist & Producer. Shamanic Explorer, Plant Medicine Advocate, Lucid Dreamer and Surfer whenever possible. Currently in Santa Fe NM, born in NY, also lived in LA, Hamburg Germany & Sagres Portugal.

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