A Year
for Music!

The One-Hundredth Post

The One-Hundredth Post

Project Update


This is the one-hundredth post of A Year for Music. That is a personal milestone, and an opportunity, as well, to provide an update on my project. I can sum it up in one sentence—


I'm having the time of my life!


Spending part of each day with music has been, for the most part, a rich and rewarding experience. In the beginning, it was hard: my re-encouter with music was, for me, emotional. I still do not want to listen to music as background to whatever it is I'm doing, and I'm beginning to think that that kind of comfortable companionship with music may not return. But what I have given myself, these hundred days, is time dedicated specifically to listen to music. I'm beginning to think that focused attention consistently applied may not be a bad way to interact with music.


I believe I am hitting the right balance between music that is entirely new to me and music I remember having loved. Notable old friends revisited include (click on the links below):



Notable new discoveries include:




It's Not All Songs and Symphonies


Writing this blog has made me realize things I may not have otherwise. I have found answers to questions that weighed on me. For example, I have considered myself a "seeker," someone who, having lost the church he loved, looked and looked for something to replace it with—when, in truth, I had found that replacement years ago. Writing in this blog about my experiences studying with my guru reminded me that I had found a path to follow, a path that spoke powerfully to me, but I left it to keep looking.


No more.


Twenty years ago, my old guru moved to Pocatello, which is close to where I currently live. At that time, I had completed six years of an eleven-year course of study with her. Perhaps I can contact her and complete the remaining five. Looking at it this way, I have to wonder at the circumstances and events that brought me back to Idaho: perhaps there is meaning to some of it that I did not at first comprehend.


It is fitting, though unexpected, that a spiritual reawakening might come to me because I started to interact again with music.





It has become clear to me that this blog will also be my autobiography—the story of my life told through encounters with music. I don't think that that particular slant on autobiography has ever been tried.



Things to Come


There will be Christmas music; the music of Hawaii; compositions by Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms. I will write about an encounter with an angel, and how I set a table for him. I will relate what I learned about suicide. I will interview more people, and listen to the music they recommend. There will be birdsong from each season. And, every day, besides the music—poetry and art.



Selected Composition


Bach: Passacaglia & Fugue In C Minor, BWV 582



Program Notes


This composition has always seemed to me a prefiguring of Bach's astounding Chaconne in D Minor. Today, I listened to E. Power Biggs play the Passacaglia & Fugue In C Minor (from the album Bach: Organ Works—E. Power Biggs [Sony Essential Classics]):


Bach: Passacaglia & Fugue In C Minor, BWV 582





I created "Wake, Butterfly," the image above, in 2006. It is based on Mandelbrot fractals. The title is from the following haiku by Basho:

Wake, Butterfly—
it's late, we've miles
to go together.







Arvo Pärt—Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten

Arvo Pärt—Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten

St. Paul & The Broken Bones

St. Paul & The Broken Bones