“Music is the MOONLIGHT in the gloomy night of life.” ~ Jean Paul Ritcher
“A painter paints pictures on canvas. But musicians paint their pictures on silence.” ~ Leopold Stokowski
” Take a music bath once or twice a week for a few seasons. You will find it is to the soul what a water bath is to the body.” ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes
“Music is what FEELINGS sound like.” ~ Author Unknown
“Music is the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life.” ~ Ludwig Van Beethoven
What would life be like without song and music in our lives? As I reminisce over all the special times of my life, it seems that right there, next to that ‘fortuitous memory’, is a song… When I hear famous lullaby’s, I am filled with gladsome memories of my mom…The Beatles, precious times spent with friends in High school… The wedding song always makes me smile as I think about the day I got married. Whether R&B, Jazz, Country western, Opera, Easy listening, Orchestra, Pop, children’s music, Worship or Song Tunes from classic movies we have grown up with and adore, music truly is the gift that “keeps on giving.”
In the causerie “Lady Make Believe,” by Jenny Walton, I admire the thought she shared as part of her magazine article . ‘A fleeting melody, a whiff of perfume-the slightest sensation can trigger a lovely memory long forgotten.’
It is so true… we never realize some of our long and vacant memories until something, ( a song, smell, sight or sound,) quickens it to our minds and awakens it deep within our souls.. Music just happens to be one of those gifts in life that brings back happy and redolent memories as opalescent as light… as if it happened ‘just yesterday,’ instead of 30 years ago!
Every time I hear this one particular song, I recall a very special and cherished memory. (A memory I had tucked away and almost forgotten.) I was at Disneyland in California with friends and family. My older brother, (by one year,) Jim, AKA ‘ my close comrade and connoisseur of mischief’ and I, jetted out to the parking lot to grab our jackets as the evening was turning chilly… (and I think he may have been sneaking a cigarette, ciggies as we called them.) 🙂 As we sat in the car for a moment to get warm, he turned the ignition on and the song by Carly Simon, “That’s the way I’ve always heard it should be” was playing. As we listened to the words, (both feeling a bit haunted, the young, happy-go-lucky teens we were,) thought how very sad her song was. We just kept listening…after the song ended, we both just looked at each other, and began sharing our fears about relationships and how we each hoped that when we grew up and got married to that ‘special someone,’ our lives would be much happier than the couple Carly was singing about. I love that memory, especially now after unexpectedly loosing Jim a few years ago. I think I took for granted that those times of sharing would be there until we were in our 80’s or 90’s. I miss him beyond what words can express and those simple times of experiencing life’s moments together. So, when I hear that song, or purposefully play it on You Tube, I don’t think of the sad words. Instead, I think of Jim and I, our night at Disneyland and what a wonderful person he was. A once forgotten memory, always present now, awakened by Carly Simon. Isn’t if funny how that works?
I can’t imagine what Christmas would be like without all the amazing, melodic carols that fill the brisk, cheerful air. Each holiday song creating an abundance of warmth, hope and joy within our hearts and home. What would worship be like if we could not express our hearts of love to God through music and praise? Then there is music for dancing… We are so blessed to be gifted with all different genres of music for every kind of dance move that fulfills us and adds so much delight, felicity and pleasure to our lives. I can’t even imagine what it would be like without watching The Voice, American Idol or So you think you can dance? Life would be unbearable! 🙂 (Just joshing.) I am just so very thankful for the gift of song and music and find that as I have gotten older, the appreciation for it within my life has grown in leaps and bounds.
I am not sure exactly when my musical taste began to broaden and change a little bit. I will always be a lover of soul and R&B, (I can’t help it, when I hear soulful artists who sing that captivating and romantic falsetto, I go crazy!) 🙂 But I have learned to deeply appreciate music that is soothing and tranquilizing to the soul, relaxes me on a stressful day or creates a mood that brings beauty to my family’s daily lives.
This blog is about the music that I have found to be sensational as well as inspiring and calming. (Almost like a sedative…) 🙂 I thought about each CD, the songs, instrumentals and overall “feeling” each one brings to it’s listener and placed with the CD, a ‘picturesque setting’ accompanied by a small synopsis and some ideas that go hand and hand with the mood of the music. If you feel drawn to a particular CD, you can always go on YOU TUBE and listen to music of that artist.
Magical sounds of the Arctic, Glacier Bay.
My all time favorite…Glacier Bay. The artist is Dennis Hysom. This music is all about the incomparable natural beauty and the boundless wilderness of Alaska’s Glacier Bay, all brought to life by the exhilarating combination of original music as well as natural sounds. Imagine the cries of the undomesticated wolves, the eloquent whistles of the great whales as they play in the deep waters, a potpourri of birds and their beautiful melodies as well as the magical sounds of the Arctic ice and water amongst soothing and lulling music.
The perfect setting for this CD is definitely one of relaxation… whether laying on your couch, reading a great novella, sitting on the front porch swing with your dog, sunbathing at the beach or by your pool… or in the winter time, sitting by the fire, enjoying a fine wine and gourmet cheeses. I always feel like I enter a different world with all these exotic sounds… a world of imagination and dreaming. (Yes, it would be great for napping as well!)
This next CD; AN ANGELS NOEL is again, one of my VERY FAVORITE in all the world.
The artists are The Ware – Patterson Duo. It is a charming and elfin Christmas CD that I play year round… It is filled with the gracious sounds of the flute and guitar bringing forth cheerful and melodic, instrumental carols. It is almost magical…there is something about the combination of the flute and strings that is mesmerizing, add that to our beloved Christmas carols and it is stupendous!
The ideal stetting for this musical extravaganza is most definitely, a roaring fire, a breathtaking Christmas tree with twinkling white lights, a hot cup of cocoa, a latte, cappuccino or glass of wine. Maybe bring out a few table games, deck of cards and some delectable, hot appetizers. It would also be a delightful milieu to a scrumptious Sunday brunch around the fire… Crab Eggs Benedict, fresh apple wood smoked bacon, sweet strawberries and home fries.
The music of Shardad… Very beautiful, gentle, amiable and ROMANTIC!
This artist is Shardad Rohan. His music contains a beautiful blend of piano, instrumental and violin. When I listen to this CD, it evokes emotions of serenity and romance. Like the title says, it is a “journey to Romance.”
The classic setting for this musical journey would be putting your feet up on the couch, reading the Newspaper with the one you love, sipping on a cup of hot, freshly brewed coffee or tea, enjoying pastries from the bakery and fresh fruit. It is also a wonderful CD to listen to in the background of a special, romantic celebration. ( Valentines day, a special anniversary, an intimate, quiet dinner with your mate, or sitting by a cozy fire together.)
This next artist is beyond sensational, world renown and began his career when he was a young man. (He still is so young!) 🙂 His CD as well as DVD, (that accompanies His LIVE CD,) is breathtaking. It’s none other than Josh Grobin. 🙂
Josh Grobin’s music is spell bounding. His voice alone is enough to entertain his fans, yet with all of his songs, he is accompanied by beautiful piano and instrumental music, and in some of the tunes, a full, regal orchestra. His music is thought provoking, dreamy, emotional and always makes me “FEEL.” I especially love his song, ‘To where you are.’ It is a song that ministers to the heart of anyone who has lost someone they love. It not only brings the healing tears, it brings HOPE! His music is also quite romantic and entertaining at the same time.You are graced in these CD’s with inspirational music not only in English, but in Italian, French and Spanish. There is nothing like it that I have found!
The picture perfect ambiance for this lovely and amazing music would be a romantic dinner for two…maybe some pasta, freshly baked bread, and fresh greens, or a wonderful “movie night’ with his Live DVD… While enjoying his DVD, enjoy some buttered popcorn, cheese and crackers, a glass of wine, cold beer and candle light. (If your not to full from dinner. 🙂 )
Artist and musician number five, (though these are not in any order as far as ‘favorite pics,’) is an artist who has gone gold with this next CD…He is known as a songwriter of pop and romantic piano music and also graces us with the lovely cello music that accompanies some of his pianos songs. He is artist-musician, Jim Brickman with his award winning CD, ‘By heart.’
Have you ever been to a Live Concert where the music of a pianist memorizes your soul? There is no other sound that compares to that of a concert piano and a Gold wining artist, creating winsome and blissful melody that enraptures our senses. Jim Brickman makes the piano come alive. You feel as if you are right there along side of him as he plays each gladsome note, captivated by his outstanding and stellar performance.
The place I envision to really enjoy Jim Brickman’s music, would be taking a Sunday drive on a Romantic country road. Perhaps down a back road where you will see sights you’ve never seen before such as old, deserted barns where at one time life was flourishing, placid creeks with small boats laying still upon the tranquil water or Antebellum homes with their colossal Oak trees adorned with Spanish moss, (hanging beards as we called them.) 🙂 Bring your favorite picnic basket filled with homemade chicken salad on rye bread, fresh fruits and cheeses, pasta salad and a bottle of Sparkling cider. Turn your Cd player up in your car and allow each song’s, beautiful, melodic piano refrains fill your soul with serenity and reverie.
Second to last, this next artist is unique, creative, exceedingly talented and his music is as much storytelling as it is celebratory. I thoroughly enjoy both of his CD’s and couldn’t decide between them, so I am introducing them both. 🙂 Mr. James Galway’s, ‘A Childhood Remembered,’ and ‘The Enchanted Forest.’
James Galway’s Enchanted Forest, is just that! It’s fairy-tale like, magical and alluring with it’s spell bounding melodies. I didn’t know this until I read up on him, but did you know he is known as “Sir James Galway,” and he preformed the title song in the Oscar winning movie, ‘The Lord of the Rings’ with his flute and orchestra? This CD is also filled with his famous flute music accompanied by an orchestra with drums, horns and violins mixed with some exotic, Japanese style music as well. A Childhood remembered is filled with songs created with 12 Narada artists who aided in composing pieces inspired by works of Childhood literature. It is adventuresome, beguiling, mysterious and soothing. I adore both of these CD’s.
For Sir Galway’s music, I suggest a couch potato day…snuggled up on the couch with your Ipod, beloved novella or a cross word puzzle. This CD makes for a wonderful background for cooking your family’s favorite dinner or a day of baking. It would also be the perfect mise-en-scene for propping your self up in bed, snuggled in an Eiderdown comforter, lighting some candles and working on your laptop or reading up on the news. (You may end up even falling asleep, his music is so calming!)
The last artist, singer – musician I want to share with you, (who is also world renowned and really needs no introduction as his name speaks for itself,) is Andrea Bocelli. His music is classic, sophisticated, regal, and he is incredibly talented, gracing us with his majestic and influential orchestra and exquisite, glorious voice.
This CD “Sacred Arias” is unforgettable. As a listener, you feel as if you are dressed in formal attire, at an historic cathedral, as you take in this angelic masterpiece. He combines Christmas Carols with renowned and adored religious songs. I love his version of “Ave Maria.” Accompanying Andrea on this CD is the very talented Myung-Whun Chung as well as an entire, august and baronial, full Orchestra. I listen to this CD at Christmas time as well as all year through as Andrea’s music and voice carries me away from this world of hustle and bustle, sad news and stressful times. He is exceedingly refreshing!
For me, I would enjoy his CD as the background to a formal Christmas dinner amongst friends. I would dress up our dining table to the hilt, filled with flickering candlelight, a roaring fire, a gourmet meal with fine wines, along with a breathtaking, mouthwatering dessert, enjoying an embellished Christmas tree and a house full of gladsome decorations for the magical season.
Make time to “take a music bath” as Oliver Wendall Holmes says… See for your self just how much music makes such a difference to your life and your soul! Relax…enjoy…you might be surprised at what you feel and remember.
*** Besides YOU TUBE and listening Bars set up in Music stores such as Borders and Barnes and Nobles, many libraries carry large selections of CD’s of all genres. Our library allows you to check them out for weeks at a time. This would be a great way to know if you enjoy a CD well enough, to purchase it.
Happy Listening! 🙂
PHOTOGRAPHS: In placing your computer mouse upon any photo or graphic, it will display where the picture originated from.