February 14, 2015

Music - My Magic Penny

Bobby McFerrin, the only person in the world I consider my hero, continues to inspire.  Eric Bibb is kind of a sub-hero, but they have influenced me in different ways.  Musical heroism can mean so many different things.


Bobby says that the fastest way to create real connection and community is to sing together.  I see this happening all around me; through my choir, through my Guitar Mama Showcase, through my a capella group and through my church. 


At a weekend of improvisational singing, for example, you get to know the other singers intimately; their struggles and their triumphs, but by the end of the weekend you might not know what they do for a living.


The same holds true in my choir.  People support each other, laugh together and encourage each other, but don’t always know each other’s last names or where they work.  Music allows us to step out of our daily grind and to step into ourselves.


I count it a tremendous privilege to facilitate music and community in the ways I do.  There is an electric joy that comes from seeing the good that grows in people beyond the songs.  I try to resist clichés as much as possible, but I have no doubt that this is what I was created to do, and that in itself is gratifying beyond words.


There was a time I thought I would pursue more of a performance life with music – and I do still LOVE performing – and there are lots of performers making their lives at it.


While I love listening to music and while certain people and songs have carried me through much (Eric Bibb), I am deeply thankful for the steps that have brought me to this place; where I have opportunity to encourage individuals and community to join together in song and to see how that music permeates so many levels of daily life in this town.  Perhaps on a local level I am able to inspire people the way that Bobby and Bibb inspire me. I can't imagine anything greater;  I am on a kind of permanent high.


I think this blogpost is to say thank-you.  To my choir, to my Sing YourSelf songmates, to In the Pink and to my Guitar Mamas.  Thank-you for feeding me joy in allowing me to be a part of what you do.


My daughter has been singing an old song this week that applies to music as much as to love – in fact, they intertwine and the song can be about both:

"Love is something if you give it away, you end up having more.  It's just like a magic penny.. lend it, spend it, and you'll have so many they roll all over the floor."


And so, friends, special for you today:


One of my favourite Bobby McFerrin links - there is a version on his album "SpiritYouAll", which EVERYBODY needs to get:  Joshua


One of my favourite Eric Bibb arrangements- there is a studio version on his album "Booker's Guitar" that for me is the all-time best recording of this song ever.  (you can tell what I think by the redundant "ever" at the end of that sentence.  Best EVER Wayfaring Stranger





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