This is a lengthy song.
Listen to it how you'd like; if that means zoning out on it, letting it play in the background as you scrub dishes, driving in the car and looking at autumn colours, staring up at the stars, playing with your dogs, laying down and missing someone...
I've listened to this song in all of those ways...I've performed this song in all of those ways. But it's up to you...those are just suggestions.
All I ask is please give it a chance to play on some decent speakers...iPhone/computer speakers aren't the best way to listen to music, in my opinion. Anyway...
It's one of my favorites that I have composed.
There are some lyrics that came from my own brain,
some from the pages of a series I read as a child about adventuring mice and badgers, (The Redwall Series by Brian Jacques)
and the final ones are lyrics that struck and stuck with me for months, a tune from a friends' band which I've seen performed live half-a-dozen times.
And every. single. time, it moves me.
So I suppose this is an embodiment of growing up for me...
it's filled with movements from different eras of my life.
It's nostalgic and childish, in the best definitions of the words.
We recorded this live at Uptown Church in Minneapolis.
It was such a beautiful process, and so inspiring to be back in a church again. I felt really grateful to be where I was, as the person I had become, with these musicians that had changed me for the better.
It isn't a "perfect" recording, I suppose.
It's reverby, and you can hear the echoes of the church.
But I believe that's where the power comes from,
the energy and aura of the room was enforcing the emotion of what we were all feeling...
and that is something that I really, really like with live music recording.
I just want to say, and I'll say it again below,
that the violin & piano parts that Renata and Carlisle came up with for this piece
are simply mesmerizing. Their musicianship and listening capabilities are astounding, and I am so so so so honoured that they took the time and space to work with me on this tune.
We really enjoy creating this, and I hope that it moves you like it moves me.
"Pottery, Poetry and Cemeteries"
We found our love, over pottery in cemeteries
We fell in love, you shouted be brave with me
We sang our song, with peace and humility
They sang along, in four-part harmony
We found our love, over poetry and do you miss me's
We fell in love, I shouted be brave for me
You sang your song, with flowers around your ears
I sang along, your words brought me to tears
"No Need for a Fire"
(lyrics borrowed from a passage in "Loamhedge" by Brian Jacques)
Lonna the Badger is traveling alone, he stops to set up camp, the night is pleasantly warm and there is 'NO NEED FOR A FIRE'
He recalls an old lullaby from his days as a young-badger...it rises unbidden to his mind...
"When weary day does shed its light
rest my head and dream
I ride the great dark bird of night
So tranquil, and serene
Then I can touch the moon afar
which smiles up in the sky
And steal a twinkle from each star
as we go winging by
And we'll fly the night
to dawning light
Wait 'til dark has ceased
to marvel at the wondrous sight
of sunrise, in the east
So slumber on, my little one
float soft as thistledown
and wake to see when night is done
Fair morning's golden gown"
(repeat, as waltz)
(following lyrics from "Bad Company" by the Be Stills)
"Did I find God? Or did I finally find me?
Did I find God? Or did I finally find me?
Well, I found God,
when you finally found me."
released October 19, 2016
I have 4 people to really thank excessively for this track.
First of all; Leo Strei, for guiding the recording process and giving us his insight. We see eye-to-eye on many things musically, and it is really sweet to have the opportunity to be working with somebody so talented and with such a good musical ear.
Speaking of musical ears...and hands...
Renata Solum (of The Be Stills) is playing violin for this track.
and Carlisle Evans Peck (of Carlisle Evans Peck & His Orchestra/ The Hat and the Hare) is on the piano.
I'm not sure where to really begin with these two.
I hope that you can hear how much we mean to each other, and how much we have helped each other grow over the past year, through this song.
I think maybe that's the point...I can try to explain away through these spondletron internet typed words that you may not even read, how incredible I believe these two are as musicians, how much they've encouraged me to dig deeper into how I understand and interpret music, how we FEEL music...and how to have fun with it.
They've sparked and continued to burn my desire to learn more about music theory, and classical music. The intricacies of their playing are unmatched in any musicians I've played close to in the past years.
And I have been privileged to play with a good number of folks.
But I think that this special feeling comes from our friendships.
And just the fact that they are great people apart from their instruments, and I admire how they live and treat others.
I love you guys!!
And last, but not least,
I'd thank Brian Jacques, author of the Redwall Abbey book series,
in particular for this song, my favourite book --LOAMHEDGE. He passed away in 2012, and I grieve that he won't have a chance to hear this song on earth...but I hope he is hearing it from where his soul is now.
I read this series as a child, and continue to read it in my young adulthood.
The books are so beautifully written, full of mesmerizing descriptions of the natural world, great summer feasts, humorous hare encounters, battling badgers, nasty Searat Lords, and adventures of weary travelers.
I felt so connected to these books as a kid, and would act out their scenes in childlike imagination; trying to crystallize fruit to throw in my knapsack before taking off on my journey, finding the perfect sword-stick and smacking it against the big oak in my backyard, warding off the vermin as my fellow mouse warrior saved the hostages, or simply sitting with my back against a log, gazing up at the clouds and sky and the sun setting as the day turned to night, and I was called back into the house, to my bed, to the comfort of my human parents...
until the next time I immersed myself in the thrill of adventure.
“Have you been travelling, my young friend? Come in out of the darkness and rain. Sit by the fire, eat, drink and rest yourself. Life is one long journey from beginning to end, you know. We all walk different roads, both with our bodies and our minds. Some of us lose heart and fall by the wayside, whilst others go on to realize their dreams and desires.” (From Loamhedge; by Brian Jacques)
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