I have to say it’s been a real treat to get to know some of you a little bit through these skype concerts and lullabyes. I recognize some faces, and very quickly, newer faces become familiar. We are telling the same stories.
What keeps astounding me is the humor and love we all share surrounding whatever loss each of us has faced or will face. Like a current that seems to draw all of us in, close to the surface, and carry us along.
I've been working on orchestrating the play for the workshops with Ben Butler....
Ben's cigar box guitar
And especially through these skype moments I realize - What a year! – losing mom and then throwing myself headlong into our story. It's cathartic for sure, but also intense in that I’ve chosen to keep digging into it. So I can’t NOT think about her, see her image, the film I took of her, her poems.
Next Friday is the anniversary of the day my dearest friends from all over the country flew in to be at my Lincoln Center Concert at the Allen Room. Something I will never ever ever forget. It was an overwhelmingly intense time – mom winding down, me deep into preparing and rehearsing for the show. All that love in each and every room. Isn’t it often like that somehow? We are given the exquisite extremes to experience all at once?
I think it was on my birthday just a few days later that mom had a brief rally – clear as day she told me “You are getting more and more beautiful, I love you so.”
She passed on January 31. It was a beautiful crisp clear, sunny day.
My grandmother Amelia's words of wisdom!
I talk a bit in the play about the current that has always run between us. How each of us always knew when to call, when to push, when to back off. That’s what is still very present. And it bolsters my confidence when I flag. There’s this current that she instilled in me, steady and strong, down the song lines.
I'll be back in the studio again this Friday.
Can't wait. One of the songs I'm planning features my little kalimba - haunting, so hard to play evenly...and tuning it is an all time feat. But the song comes at the "still point" of the play...
I think I sent out about 200 t shirts over the Holidays... ho ho ho!!
Jonatha's messy workshop!
Some of our generous pledgers have gotten their lullabies and skype concerts. So much fun. One family was skiing up in Maine so I got to sing to them all huddled under blankets and cozy ski clothes, their dog smooshed in with them... I could see the deep snow out the window. Too cool!
I am deeply touched by your responses to this new project. And I am so excited about what's happening musically and theatrically. My mom would be thrilled! "Boolie, that's good!! I'm sure she would say..." She would LOVE the cello parts....
(photo Hollis King)
We have another recording session planned for January 14th. That's when the strings, the trombone, alto flute and accordion will have their say!!
And the rehearsals and workshops are coming together for the second week of February! If you'd like to be a part of it, go HERE.
So Happy New Year! Thank you all so much for everything...and Keep spreading the word.