Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

Just a treat for the ears … http://www.blueheron.org/

Read Full Post »

One thing people might not know about me is that as an adult I learned how to play the harmonica. I’d never played an instrument before. The class was in part an opportunity to do something different and also an homage to my father who played the harmonica when I was a child. I have a very nice harmonica tucked away somewhere. I haven’t played or thought about playing for years until I came across a 1975 recording of Babylon is Falling Down sung by Deacon Dan Smith with Nick Hallman & the Georgia Sea Island Singers. The music is on the disc, Shall We Gather at the River, highlighting Florida’s African American religious music. This song and 14 additional tracks can be accessed online via the following link: https://www.floridamemory.com/audio/cd3.php  Well worth a visit to that page and the larger Florida Memory site to learn about the diverse history of the peoples that have shaped a place that is an important part of the American puzzle.

 

Read Full Post »

… I would paint what I hear in this piece of music, Rhapsody No. 1 in D Flat Major by Herbert Howells.  The entire piece is only five minutes and 35 seconds long, but it is the segment between 1:30 and 3:00 that moves me most. I first heard it being played a few weeks ago at Trinity Church in Copley Square.  The organist, Colin Lynch, was rehearsing for Sunday services. I appreciated the beauty of his playing but at first the music itself did nothing for me … and then something happened. I was hooked.  And then released. As he kept rehearsing the piece, I wanted to dash into the church and stop him to ask what in the world was he playing but that seemed inappropriate.  I thought I’d catch him at the end of his rehearsal but I missed him.

Time passed, lots of traveling took place but I could still hear that music.  I tried to describe the piece to other musicians and people who knew classical music far better than I. Keep in mind I have no language for music (which is why I want to paint what I’m hearing). I kept saying, “It’s the kind of music that, you know, leads you someplace,” and other not especially helpful phrases.  I was about to give up my search when I did chance upon the organist. This time I stopped him in his tracks and asked, “Hey, Colin, what was that piece of music you were playing two weeks ago?”

He lifted an eyebrow but he indulged me.  He helped me find the language to describe what I’d heard. And as we narrowed down the possibilities of what he may have been playing, he finally asked, “Was it loud? Did it get really loud?” “Yes!” I said, and so he nodded and then wrote down the possibilities.

It was Herbert Howell’s Rhapsody No. 1 in D Flat.  Imagine my pleasure when I found this Youtube recording by Nigel Potts. Listen at your leisure. And that’s my random story this bright Monday morning.  Have a good day, folks. 😉

 

Read Full Post »

… there was a school and on the campus there was a chapel and inside the chapel there was a stained glass window known as The Singing Window.

photo by Carol M. Highsmith

photo by Carol M. Highsmith

 

Sources and Additional Readings

Learn more about the photographer Carol M. Highsmith on the Library of Congress website: Carol M. Highsmith Archive.

Learn more about Tuskegee University including its tours and the history of the chapel.

Read Full Post »

I tried to explain to my brother, who needs an alarm clock in the spring when you have these little fellows singing in the trees outside your window.

Read Full Post »

Between fish in the previous post, the rain today and reading a book set in coastal South Carolina, well, I guess there’s plenty of reason why Wade in the Water came to mind as I worked with this image.  If you’ve never heard the song, this is a pretty good link.  Have a good evening, folks.

Read Full Post »

Recently, a family of swans swam past me. As they did so, several spread their wings in the sunlight.  Slow movements that made me think of motion and music.

I took many photos, and I wondered what am I to do with these images? Then, I listened to a particular piece of music and suddenly wanted to put the images and that music together somehow.

 

I’m going to give it a try. I’m not sure that I will be successful, but it is good to have a goal. I’ll let you know what happens. But until then, here are a few images of the beautiful birds.

p.s.  As for the music that moved me? Just one of those very popular pieces out there in the world, Adagio in D Minor by John Murphy, composed for the film, Sunshine (2007). So many variations on the theme available online, but here’s a link to a nice one. Enjoy.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »