words by Erin Wolf
This Thursday, Margaret Dearden (whom Milwaukeeans might best know as ‘Pezzettino’) will make her way back to her homebase from Brooklyn for an event at the Sugar Maple that will involve a new EP, a philosophical iPhone game and limited edition book release, all benefiting Milwaukee’s Sweet Water Foundation. Now, as ZETI, Dearden releases her work to further a cause and explains the journey from there to here and how everything connects.
Sum it up: why Pezzettino, then and why ZETI, now?
Pezzettino erred by allowing the external to define identity: reacting to the Other; devaluing self. This behavior caused acute stress, panic, fear, blame, depression, loneliness. I knew I had to break out of my own box, but I didn’t exactly know how, so I just kept at this crazy pace, running myself into the ground and bouncing all over the place until finally, I simply broke.
It felt like pushing through a gelatinous barrier, surrendering to the gravitational pull of an internal spiral. I succumbed to the creative flow and found clarity, and am more aware of my purpose. Credit to Pezzettino for recognizing Fear and combating, but it’s time for simple dismissal because I have to work to do, and Fear isn’t on the appointment list. ZETI is full ownership, license, complete reveal, high standard and the most difficult effort of my life.
You’re in Brooklyn right now, but it still feels as though Milwaukee is very much home for you, still…is this true?
Milwaukee is home because my love is there and I am proud of my roots. Brooklyn is home as well. It’s where I dare to dream and create. The task is to harmonize, to reconcile the difference.
Your new release, Biscuit Basin or the Kangaroo Communique: A bowl of genetically modified fruit – it’s more than just an EP. Elaborate, please?
1) The first element is the iPhone game – a philosophical challenge, an interactive narration of how ZETI became. It was engineered by a team of software gurus, led by Dan Giralte. He took the concept, illustrations and sound design and said, “We can do this. Here’s how,” like magic.
2) The second element is a limited edition book of poetry from the breakthrough, printed on fine paper, decorated gold leaf, hand bound. Not for those afraid of the dark. CORRECTION: precisely for those afraid of the dark. And for me, as a reminder tool.
3) The third element is the EP, six songs which Pezzettino had been storing for a release, but do not qualify as ZETI. These songs are decisively declined, but with recognition of their potential to promote growth in the community. The only ZETI contribution to the EP is the post-production analysis, evident in selection, title, format.
How did you become involved with the Sweet Water Foundation?
It is important for this first release to be nurturing and related to the element of water. If you Google ‘water nonprofit Milwaukee’, Sweet Water is in the search results. James Godsil (co-founder) and I met briefly at People’s Books Cooperative on February 14th, 2009. Sweet Water was only an embryo. I was timid and impressed by his conviction…so vibrant. I looked over at him like a role model, thinking, “maybe he’s crazy, talking about farming fish with lettuce on top inside an urban warehouse…but wouldn’t it be wonderful? Look at those Wide Bright Eyes…”
And, now! Google results show plain and clear — powerhouse. Creating new solutions for a broken system, spearheading movement…it’s something we all have to figure out how to do in this harsh reality. How to progress forward.
Do you see yourself doing more involved musical projects similar to this and do you have anything dreamed up, already?
I’m not sure what you mean by “involved”, but I have an enormous list of things to learn and projects to tackle. It’s only the beginning.
ZETI in Milwaukee takes place at the Sugar Maple (441 E. Lincoln Avenue) on Thursday, April 5th at 7 p.m. 21+ Listen to ZETI on SoundCloud
and tune into Dori’s Girlina Show tomorrow at 1 p.m. to listen to an interview with ZETI on the Mighty 91 for WMSE’s Local Lunchbox segment.