Sunday, October 16, 2011

music and intention

stones louth ireland copyright kerry dexter
In her song Stones in the River, Carrie Newcomer sings


...today I’ll drop stones into the river.
And the current takes them out into forever.
And the truth is most of us will never know,
Where our best intentions go.
Still I’ll drop another stone.

Intention is always a subject for reflection and contemplation and question, in music and in other parts of life. Then there’s the whole aspect of the space between intention and action -- and the spaces around both of those. No accident, I think, that Newcomer chose to place this song on the album she named Before & After.

What does all this have to do with music? Ideas about that

Music is a handed on thing, a shared art, from composer to performer to those who listen -- even those at times that may be all the same person.

Every person who goes to a concert has a different experience. In part that holds because of what each brings to the time, and in part that is because of what each hears, and what each takes away.

What each remembers comes into it too. Songwriters -- any sort of writers, really -- know they cannot control how someone will take what they have written, how they will understand it, and what they will make of it. It is as Newcomer suggests in her song, a balance between creating and letting go. Leaving space for whoever receives your art make it part of his or her own life.

Try this: think of the last three songs (or if you prefer, other things you have read or heard) and write down one thing that you remember most from each. How has that become part of your life? What do you learn from thinking about that?

photograph of stones is copyrighted. thank you for respecting that.

here is a video of Newcomer singing Stones in the River



you may also wish to see
Music Road: India to Indiana: Everything Is Everywhere from Carrie Newcomer
Music Road: reflections with Adrienne Young
Music Road: Shadow and Light: Irish Music from John Doyle

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1 Comments:

Anonymous Roxanne @ Champion of My Heart said...

Love that lyric snippet. Thanks for sharing it. It'll stay with me, for sure.

5:08 PM  

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