Lift Every Voice and Sing was first performed on Feb. 12, 1900 https://t.co/RXbwrh4hlZ
— Denise Oliver-Velez (@Deoliver47) February 12, 2018
I’ve been sensing a great weariness in myself and others, and as I was thinking about that over the weekend, I realized that music had somehow become a neglected part of my routine. It was a startling revelation, since I have so often relied on music to help me access and embrace emotions that I generally hold inside. Music can make me feel vulnerable yet invincible; sad but determined; angry but joyous. Today I’m sharing some of the songs that have become part of the playlist of my life: sometimes to strengthen me for resistance; sometimes to calm me; sometimes for the sheer outpouring of joy. Please share some of your songs in the comments.
Vienna Teng: Stray Italian Greyhound (written after attending an Obama rally in 2007)
Gabriel Fauré: “Les berceaux” (Cradles), Op. 23, No. 1 Souzay (I prefer this sung by a mezzo, but this version on YouTube, sung by the baritone Gerard Souzay, has the advantage of captions/translation; did I happen to mention that my taste in music is eclectic?)
Lin-Manual Miranda: Yorktown (The World Turned Upside Down); (maybe not the song most people would pick from Hamilton, but it moves me every time)
Johnny Clegg: Asimbonanga, as performed by Soweto Gospel Choir (this “flash mob” performance was done two days after Tata Madiba (Nelson Mandela) died; lyric translation here: Asimbonanga. And if you ever get a chance to see them perform, do it. They’re even more amazing in person.)
The Corries: Flower of Scotland (now often referred to as the unofficial anthem of Scotland)
Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon: Ella’s Song as performed by Sweet Honey in the Rock (The lyrics are drawn from a speech by activist Ella Baker; I’ll be profiling her in a later post. Lyrics here: Ella’s Song) Sweet Honey is another not-to-be-missed group.
Now it’s your turn…
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