Category Archives: Music
(Quickly—what sound does the Star Trek transporter make? Took you back in time, didn’t I?)
Last year in Bolivia, our Habitat for Humanity Global Village group was invited to an evening presentation of traditional Bolivian dances. I arrived on the terrace before the others, just as our host tested the sound system. He put on a song and then left to check on something else. I sat listening to the music in the tropical evening warmth. I looked up at a moon surrounded by feathery clouds. It was a perfect moment. As I sat there, the trip leader joined me. He sensed the quality of the moment and, without speaking, sat beside me to survey the moon. The perfect moment lasted until the song ended and the rest of the group crowded the terrace.
I bought a copy of the music, and when I hear the opening strains of that song, it transports me—boom—back to the tropical warmth of a Bolivian evening.
MJ wrote about this on her blog last week. Paul McCartney transports her to another time. http://emjayandthem.com/2013/06/27/silly-love-songs/
What are some of your time travel songs?
Do you love bagpipes, or loathe them?
If you were to ask a random sampling of people, “What do you think about bagpipes?”, you would rarely hear, “Meh, I can take them or leave them.” People either love them or hate them.
I love them.
This is lucky for me. As I write this piece, I’m sitting on my back deck listening to my next-door neighbour practise his bagpipes. The haunting notes waft through the air to me here in my peaceful place. Chills, it gives me.
I harbour the quiet belief that anyone who says they hate bagpipes has never heard a massed band play “Amazing Grace.” In the 1990s I covered the North Lanark Highland Games many times for Rogers TV. When all the competing pipe bands assembled on the last day to march and performed together in a massed band, I cried every time. Chills, it gave me.
On my birthday last year I awoke to a warm, sunny day. I took the paper and my coffee to the front porch to enjoy the morning just as my next-door neighbour stepped out his front door to prepare himself for a pipe band competition. He played a perfect version of “Scotland the Brave.”
I soaked up the performance. “What a perfect birthday present,” I thought. “It doesn’t get any better than this.”
My teenaged daughter, disturbed from a Saturday morning sleep-in, appeared at the door. Bleary-eyed she said, “What is up with that awful noise?”
Bagpipes: They aren’t for everyone.
The host asked him to describe the story behind the title song for his latest album, “A Place Called Love.” Reid said that he wrote the song around the time that his grandmother passed away and his daughter was born. He asked himself, “Where did my grandmother go? Where did my daughter come from?”
The answer he came up with was a place called love.
Yesterday I was at a wake for the father of a friend of ours. I had never met the father, but I knew how much his children loved and respected him. As I stood in the crowded room and looked around at the community of support gathered in his memory, I had no doubt that he came from and has returned to a place called love.
I can’t think of anything better.