Friday, April 15, 2011

Music from then to now

When I was growing up in the 70s, I listened to Casey Kasem American Top 40 every weekend. This left me with an enduring love of classic rock as well as a treasure trove of lyric phrases to apply to everyday life. However the teachings of 70s lyrics are not a good foundation upon which to base one's views of life and relationships. The Simpsons are much better for that...^^ I liked disco too, but what made the most impression on me was when I first heard the Sex Pistols at my friend Terry's house. It was one of those now THAT is MUSIC moments for me, which in fairness also happened with Violent Femmes in college and with Wagner's Ring and Meistersingers (yes, I like opera too!) After college, I fell out of the music scene, clinging to my oldies stations through the late 80s and 90s, so I missed the Nirvana era. Thanks to Youtube I am now able to catch up and enjoy the 90s and the 60s music which was not a part of my experience. Some 50s is ok. I do like Hank, Hank Jr and even Hank III (yes, Hank III !--check him out!!). I went into a bluegrass phase, and still can be brought to tears by those hymns and sad songs about separation and loss. When Linda Ronstadt went all 40s it was very disappointing. She was best in country with the Stone Poneys and early solo albums. The first album I owned was "The Worst of Jefferson Airplane." Love Ziggy Stardust too!! Anyway, I experienced a contemporary music renaissance in the new century. Gave up my oldies station for more contemporary sounds. Starting with Michele Branch, and traveling to Pink, No Doubt, and now to Gaga, Katy Perry and even Nicki Minaj, I see that there is always something good just around the corner..oh...Ke$ha too, what the heck! At the annual eDance show in Hershey, I not only get to see very talented local dancers, but also I am exposed to new music. Last year it was "Telephone" did i miss THAT! There is so much that I didn't mention too. Moral of the story is: Don't stay stuck in your own music era or category! Change the station sometimes and see what's out there!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Tell me. tell me, good Silvanus,
What the fauns are bringing in;
Perhaps it is that we should join them,
And with that the song begin.
Dancing, dancing in the forest,
'Ere the morning stars were made;
Piping, piping comes the music,
Here ye now before it fade.
Were you there in early morning,
'Ere the shining dew was spread?
Were you there when man awakened?
Will you live to see him dead?
Yes, Silvanus, I am coming,
Wait you just a moment here;
I will join you when I'm ready,
There is one I would be near.
Eros daemon has compelled me,
Onward, upward through the sky!
Now I rest, for I am weary;
Let me drink or I will die.
Many things that you can tell me,
Many things I want to know.
You will lead and I will follow,
Take me where I want to go.
We will leave the frozen city,
Take the trail to forest land;
I am sad no one will join us,
Yet tis good you don't command.
Yes, I know it, none can follow,
Save them that desire to go;
You can only point in silence,
And to us your vintage show.
I will sit with you in silence,
Under starry moon-lit sky.
There it shall be in the morning
Fauns will find us where we lie.
They will come with feast and music;
We will dance around a ring:
Then we all shall sit together,
Have a cup of wine and sing!
We will talk of buried treasure,
Elf and daemon, fire and sword.
Then we all shall call together
To the shining heaven-lords.
And perhaps they'll come and join us
Lead us to their hidden land.
There we all will live together,
Nourished by Her loving hand.
Come, Silvanus, we must hurry,
Or we'll miss the feast today!
They only come when they are ready.
When that is, I cannot say.

29 November 1979 (found in a draft of a letter to Barb Black)

Friday, April 1, 2011

Within safe borders

Just for a moment, let us peek through the broken window of an abandoned farm building on a warm muggy summer afternoon. There in the woods, out of sight of the road, two young people have set up what could only be described as the palace of the kingdom of their dreams. If we look closely, we can see a slender girl in a powder blue sun dress, wearing a simply woven garland of meadow flowers. She wags her finger in mock seriousness at a pale brown haired young man, who appears to share her love of freckles. He is wearing a painted Wehrmacht helmet, and has a cardboard imperial eagle pinned awkwardly to his dark green polo shirt. Suddenly, he drops to his knees and clasps his hands together as if in prayer. The girl pivots gracefully to pick up what looks like a hockey stick, and taps him gently on the left shoulder. He pauses to adjust his thick, smudged glasses, then looks up at her with a radiant, heart-melting smile. What is going on here? The girl is a princess, not yet a queen. The boy is at the beginning of his journey as a knight. As he stands and they move together towards the door, she hands him what appears to be a blue M&M... Let us leave them for now in their dreams, as they prepare for adventures within the safe borders of their kingdom.