It was the same Martin Luther who said:"I have no use for cranks who despise music, because it is a gift of God. Music drives away the Devil and makes people gay; they forget thereby all wrath, unchastity, arrogance, and the like. Next after theology, I give to music the highest place and the greatest honor." On this Friday before Reformation Sunday, let's talk about music. Share with us five pieces of music that draw you closer to the Divine, that elevate your mood or take you to your happy place. They might be sung or instrumental, ancient or modern, sacred or popular...whatever touches you.Some of us even love hymns. (Well, I do.)"
FIVE???? Oh surely you jest! Five artists maybe! Nope, can't even do that. Five kinds, five genres, maybe. Music has always been the backdrop of my life, the soundtrack. Varying with time and place from Catholic hymns to Wiccan circle drumming and pretty much everything in between. But just for the sake of "the five" a few that pop into my head this morning......
- Gounod's Ave Maria. Family legend says it was playing on the hospital sound system as mom was wheeled into the delivery room and again as she was going back into her room after I was born, and again as we left the hospital. We played it at her funeral. It was sung (in Latin of course) at my ordination and will make another appearance next Spring at the wedding.
- Handel's Messiah. Not just the Alleluia, fabulous though it be, but some of the little and less heard oratorios just make me weep with the sheer beauty of it all.
- Hymns. Oh my yes...where do I begin? How Can I Keep from Singing, Be Thou my Vision, Taste and See, Amazing Grace, It is Well with my Soul, and a hundred more that come to me to offer comfort in my brain's little soundtrack on dark and stormy nights, during scary drives, when I can't find my center, when there are no words because the feeling is too big for them....well, you know.
- Gregorian chant sung well by monks.
- The music of my life....Chicago, Queen, Three Dog Night, the Beatles, Simon and Garfunkel, Neal Diamond...and lately of course Mr. Jimmy Buffet....anything he sings can make me cheer right up, especially if heard in the company of a cute sweet guy while tooling down the highway in a red mini-cooper!