Upbeat is the opposite of downbeat, right?
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: upbeat.
Upbeat is the opposite of downbeat, right?
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: upbeat.
My parents did not do karaoke. They held sings.
In college, late 1950s and on, they would have a sing. My father played guitar, they would invite all their friends, and sing folk songs. They used the book in the photograph, Song Fest, edited by Dick and Beth Best. Last published in 1955, I think.
I have no memory of the book itself. However, a friend of my father’s bound his copy in 2003 in leather. When I saw it, I searched on line and bought my own. It has words AND MUSIC and a chord progression. When I opened it, I know a song from about every third or fourth page.
My sister and I memorized the songs. We both had hundreds of songs memorized, many from this book, or from records. We photocopied a Beatles record insert and memorized all the words on a long car trip once.
I don’t know much about the Intercollegiate Outing Club Association, but there are still copies of Song Fest on line. My parents had to edit a number of the songs for two small children, since we were picking them up. They chose silly songs, “Dead Girl Songs” (Banks of the Ohio, Long Black Veil, My Darling Clementine, Cockles and Mussels) and work/protest songs. They rarely sang sentimental songs, except for lullabies. I loved to sing. We used to have reel to reel tape with my little sister singing a fifth off when she was three or four, but it disintegrated.
My father, Malcolm Kenyon Ottaway, was a fabulous musician. He sang in prep school, in college, in choruses on the east coast, in Rainshadow Chorale from 1997 until his death in 2013. He loved Bach and the Band and loved to encourage other people to sing. He was in our Community Chorus for years, to help new singers. People must try out for Rainshadow Chorale, but Community Chorus is for anyone who wants to join and sing. After my father died, men would say, “I would try to stand near your father in Community Chorus, to help learn the part. He was so good.”
Here is one of the lullabies from Song Fest:
At the Sings, my parents would start with a song and then go around the room, asking other people to pick songs. Sometimes people were shy, but my folks were really good at getting people to sing. Sometimes we’d have multiple guitars and other instruments. My sister and I had favorite songs too!
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: karaoke.
Rainshadow Chorale is practicing, masked, but practicing, for our concerts the first week of November.
I think it’s going to be fabulous!
Our website: http://rainshadowchorale.org/
Now all we need is the audience! Mark your calendars!
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: audience.
I have been in Rainshadow Chorale since 2000. My father, Malcolm Ottaway, was one of the eight people who started it in 1997. He and my mother moved here in 1996. My mother, Helen Burling Ottaway, died of ovarian cancer on May 15, 2000. Rainshadow agreed to sing a Byrd Mass for my mother’s memorial. My father asked if my sister and I could sing in the chorale for the memorial. We were told yes. I had moved to Port Townsend at the end of 1999.
After the Memorial, I asked if I could stay in the chorale. The answer was yes and I have been in it ever since.
Our director, Rebecca Rottsolk, is retiring from the chorale after our next concert. She has picked favorite pieces. I have sung in nearly every concert since 2000, though I couldn’t sing in the one right after my father died in 2013. He followed my sister, who died in 2012. My throat wouldn’t let me sing that one.
So Rebecca, thank you for the music and thank you for being a wonderful director and forcing us to level up over and over. I am sending you peace and love and joy.
And everyone else, put this concert on your calendar.
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: thanks.
A friend and I are talking about Mother’s Day yesterday.
Somehow having a song about Mother’s Day came up. “Bet I can think of one.” I say.
“Humph.” says the friend. Or some skeptical comment.
I start singing.
“That’s NOT a mother’s day song.” says my friend.
“Well, it is if your mother is dead.”
“It’s not cheerful.”
“Yes, that’s true.”
So here is a recording. I haven’t learned the guitar part yet so I thought… well heck, why not sing along with Dave Van Ronk?* This is the third take. Might replace it with a later take later today.
Trigger warning: I miss my mom. This is about missing our moms. Hugs, all.
Happy Mother’s Day and hugs if you miss your mother.
*Is this a copyright violation? It probably is. Someone yell at me if it is. My brain is muttering something about sampling. Let’s see, from circa 1959 to 1961… does that make a difference?
I love the orange sky and peach and lemon and tangerine, just as the sun rises! This has been a difficult week with the time change and with a concert or concert rehearsal four out of the last 5 evenings after a full day of clinic. Concert today and tomorrow, and I love the pieces we are doing. Here: Rainshadow Chorale.
Here are speaking up and speaking up 2.
More events in my life:
I am on the metro in Washington, DC. It is not rush hour. I am reading my book.
I suddenly realize as the metro stops, my car is empty. I am the only one in the car. One man gets on. I am hyperalert. He walks down the car and sits next to me.
The car starts up. I stare at my book.
“Hi.” he says, “What’s your name?”
I don’t answer.
“C’mon. What’s your name?”
“I am reading my book. I don’t want to talk.”
“C’mon, baby, be nice.”
I stand up, purse and book. “Excuse me.” I step by him and stand at the metro car door. I get off that car at the next stop and move to the next one with people on it. Shaking with both the threat and anger, that I have to deal with this.
2. I take a dance class in Washington, DC. I work at the National Institute of Health. I leave my car at NIH and ride the metro.
One night I get off the metro at NIH and I am riding up the escalator, with my backpack.
A man, clearly drunk, steps up on the escalator beside me, and says “Hi, baby, what’s your name?”
“LEAVE ME ALONE!” I snarl and stomp up the escalator. It is dark and there are very few people at the stop and in the lot. I am in danger from this drunk.
I am walking fast at the top, away from the escalator, when I hear running steps behind me. WHACK! He takes a swing at me and runs off. He hits my backpack and not me. I am screaming at him.
He is gone. I run to my car, get in, and sit there, hands on the wheel. Shaking. There is a part of me that wonders what I would do if he crossed the road in front of my car.
My next class is not dance. I take tae kwon do.
3. I have used my tae kwon do once so far. Where? In first year medical school.
No way, you say.
We have lecture after lecture in the same hall. We usually sit in the same places. I am newly married. The guy behind me starts tickling my neck during a lecture, with a pen. I twitch a couple times and then hear muffled giggles and realize that it’s the person behind me.
I stiffen and wait until I am really ready. Breathe. The tickle comes. I snap a basic block back and forward: and have his pen.
The whole class turns towards us. The lecturer stops, staring. I am facing forward, holding the pen down low, not moving. He has the entire room staring at him, everyone but me. He doesn’t say a word. You could hear a …. pen…. drop.
The lecturer shakes his head and continues.
I keep the pen.
Just think, he’s a doctor.
I took the photograph when we were in Wisconsin. I went to UW Madison. I like being a badger.
i think therefore i write
Some of the creative paths that escaped from my brain!
Books, reading and more ... with an Australian focus ... written on Ngunnawal Country
Engaging in some lyrical athletics whilst painting pictures with words and pounding the pavement. I run; blog; write poetry; chase after my kids & drink coffee.
spirituality / art / ethics
Coast-to-coast US bike tour
Climbing, Outdoors, Life!
Paula Light's Writing Site | The Classic Edition
Refugees welcome - Flüchtlinge willkommen I am teaching German to refugees. Ich unterrichte geflüchtete Menschen in der deutschen Sprache. I am writing this blog in English and German because my friends speak English and German. Ich schreibe auf Deutsch und Englisch, weil meine Freunde Deutsch und Englisch sprechen.
Examining the Ordinary and Extraordinary
Books by author Diana Coombes
NEW FLOWERY JOURNEYS
in search of a better us
Raku pottery, vases, and gifts
Rural doctor, mom, writes poems, dance, sing.
𝖠𝗇𝗈𝗍𝗁𝖾𝗋 𝖶𝗈𝗋𝖽𝖯𝗋𝖾𝗌𝗌.𝖼𝗈𝗆 𝗌𝗂𝗍𝖾.
Taking the camera for a walk!!!
A blog designed to remember the past and celebrate the present.
From the Existential to the Mundane - From Poetry to Prose
1 Man and His Bloody Dog
Homepage Engaging the World, Hearing the World and speaking for the World.
Anne M Bray's art blog, and then some.
The Home for All My Coding Projects
My Personal Rants, Ravings, & Ruminations
...out of a digital shoebox
You must be logged in to post a comment.