Friday, January 31, 2014

Its More than Words

Someone said to me once that "its just words" when I asked them how it felt to sing the songs. I get it.  To them, having sung them over and over again they seem just words. I wonder if it is like this for every performer and do the words no longer touch you, the singer like they do you or I.

There is music that brings us to our feet, commands us to dance. There is music that brings us to our knees and tears to our eyes. Music that ignites a fire and music that puts out the fire. Music is forever evolving just like us, along with the times. We think of more ways to share, more ways to create and even more objects to create music with. I have seen saws being played, kazoos trumpeting out their unusual sound and foot stomping along with thigh slapping.

The very people who create the masterpieces that fill our everyday lives have their own lives. They love, they hurt, they grow and they learn. They share. It is this sharing of lives that bring us all together with wondrous voices, people that play stringed instruments as if they were born holding them and community. Every show I go to, I feel a connection to what I am hearing and experiencing. Some songs pull me into their stories and in turn, my mind carries on towards its own ending.

It is not just words. Its experience, life, love. Its life with an orchestra behind it. Its bass and drums so powerfulthat your heart bursts. Its a master creator doing his thing that makes him or her great. Lets throw a few names out there. At the moment, I am listening to R ed Heart Alarm. A group made of pure energy, natural talent and a few guys that I have a hard time describing. Full of stories and absolutely awesome.

Country rock kinda group that is described as guntry. I am not able to go to a show without getting on my feet and dancing till the floors are shaking. I once thought if there was anything I could do to sky rocket this group into stardom, I would do it. I don't really know how to do that but every chance I get I do try and turn another person onto their music.

Another...The Summer Januaries. Sweet couple with a style so worked out that they look like they have been at...for a lifetime. Rachel is so at ease with her violin. I can imagine her sitting on a couch sipping a soda and picking up her violin and smiling while she commands that bow across hairs with a sweet smoothness. Music filling the air and then, voices chime in. Hers and Sean's. Sean towers over Rachel but does not over shadow her. They have their music worked out  and make it look so easy. Lets also not forget to mention that the art on their CD covers are created by Sean who is as talented in not only singing and guitar playing but an extremely fine illustrationist as well. Check out "Looking Up".

The Family Crest was a treasure find one night when I wandered into The Rendevous in Bell Town. If you would allow me to describe music as elation, wondrous and absolute genius...The Family Crest is all that. A core group of multi faceted talent that will blow you away. Throw in a visiting member from whatever city the happen to be performing in and WOW. You can join online to be a member of their family, keep track of them. Encourage them, even some day perform with them.

Jim Page. I would be remiss to not mention him. Fold music you can get into. A perfect sounding pitch and extremely talented guitarist. Can I add all around nice guy and friendly smile? He writes songs and I swear they sound like songs that we were around when we were growing up. But they are not, they are new. I genuinely appreciate and admire this man. I was told that he  pretty much made his living just on his music. This is a hard thing to do unless you make it big time, mainstream or whatever we are calling it these days. His music is mostly folk music that will endure.

Julia Massey..o, how I love you and your peacock colored eyelids. And Jared. Really, how could we imagine two such people and how in the world did they find eachother? Julia has a magical quality to her entire being, her voice and her songs. She  not only plays keyboards..she masters them! I figure some day she will if she wishes show up on a stage in front of thousands of screaming simply ecstatic people as beautiful as she. I love her playful style, her spirit and yes, her peacock colored eyelids. To enjoy their sounds, their styling..look up Julia Massey and the Five Finger Discount. Jared need a paragraph or page or book or two all of your own.

Your naturally rambunctious curly hair that sings on its own. Um, not really. Wings..I remember wings being mentioned and worn more than once. Your love of life, fun and ingenuity are so refreshing and admirable. I cant wait till your new CD comes out which by the time this is published, might already be available in sneak preview version. There needs to be more Julia's and Jared's on the planet but luckily, we have them.


What is the Safeword? Sasquatch! I should gush and gush and gush. Two very quiet, seemingly non descript people who blend into the Seattle streets...HA. Lets pull up a chair, a standing bass, a guitar...lets be prepared to be blown away. Angel and deep voice meet and make lala lets fly away music. Seriously, this duo is oozing coolness, easiness and smoothness. I want to compare them to Alice and ... or  and Mary C... or the equivalent. I want to write this in such a way that you understand, each and every one I mention deserves a serious listen.

Hopefully by now, you have all heard of Mary Lambert. I was lucky enough to meet her not so long ago at Columbia City Theatre and I have a signed CD..sigh. Smile, blessed super talented mega watt smile Mary. Thank you for existing. You will prove to be a light, an example and inspiration. Not kidding. Beautiful and buxom and not afraid to tell her stories. Love her honest to god talent and truth. Letters Don't Talk is in my possession and I suggest you go out and grab it up. Delicious!

Pickled Okra...your no pickle at all. Your a quirky group of sweet people that pick,  strum and your awesome. Fun, vibrant and talented. You found a niche that fits your cotton skirts, suspenders and feathered hats. I want to be just like you when I grow up. Currently a growing trend of karaoke has taken over at a local establishment that is better than karaoke. Its Karoakegrass. A live blue grass band backing up the singers, this is just one thing the group does. I would be remiss if I didn't let you know, at a show one night in Ballard with part of this group performing is where I first heard a saw being played. Spooky, it is and very mesmerizing.

Finally, we come to Ruby, Ruby whom I never met except thru stories and music and never will. Ruby will continue to fill our lives with music in her way well past her young years. I wish I had met such a fine talented young lady. She is Stardust Gem. She is Ruby Lhianna Smith and her love of music according to her parents started early. She played piano, bass and sang. She wrote and inspired. She brought people together.

This brings us to my point. Music is not just words. It is words brought to life. It is our lives. It is inspiration and up in your face. It is compassion, heartfelt and rocking. It is music. I thank you for the music.