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Wrapping up winter break

The collective wisdom of successful songwriters and producers seems to be quantity. Make stuff. You’ve got to craft stuff to craft better. I also once read an exchange that went something like this:

“I have some ideas that would make

Capturing a piece of life in the Indiana EP

I'm still testing out this analogy, but I often think that life is like a vine. Beauty - the delight and interpretation we derive from life - is the wine, extracted from the vine in a process of violence and…

Another song from the hospital

There is a carol whose music you have heard, but I doubt you have ever sung in a congregation. 

"The Coventry Carol" is a commemoration of the children who perished at Herod’s order.  

Those children were victims of an ancient…

Songs from the hospital

A hospital stay impressed a deep love for Christmas music in this writer’s heart. The hospital was also the beginning of another person’s practice of music. About the year 1930, ten-year-old Alfred Burt received a cornet as a reward for…

Soundtrack of a yesteryear: a Thanksgiving tribute

It must have been twenty years ago. At a November youth group meeting, we divided into little circles and said or prayed something we were thankful for.  

I looked down at my hands. One of them had scars on both…

Down-Home Domestic Art

Literature professor Laurence Perrine sums up literature as either interpretative or escapist (or a blend thereof). A classicist might instead say the function of literature is to teach and delight. 

I think these categories can be applied pretty well, in…

Bringing a piece of home to home

The experience of staying in one place most of your childhood is irreplaceable. Stasis allows depth. 

This is what I had in Akron from age four to nineteen. It was there, in an old gritty neighborhood just west of downtown…

Confluences

Once upon a time, not so long ago, free spirits could walk to the edge of the cotton factory ruins on the Shenandoah River. These are square-cornered stone walls two or three feet wide with a drop of, oh, ten…

The most expensive piece

The biggest disappointment from my first trip to the studio was that one of my pieces wasn't ready. It was, technically and compositionally, the most difficult piece. I wondered if I would have to hack it to bits before coming…

Treasurekeeping

Tania Melnyczuk

I had a pleasant dream one Saturday morning about an auction. I hadn't been to an auction in a while, even though two fifty-cent La-Z-Boy armchairs in the living room testified of my success. This unexpected dream prompted…