My mother, brothers, and I rode home from the hospital without words the night my father died. Only Stevie Wonder spoke for us. His box set collection served as a soothing soundtrack for a somber ride, “Heaven is 10 Zillion Light Years Away” playing on an unintended loop. The song would end and one of us would inadvertently NEED to hear it again. I never particularly cared for that song, nor in the sentiment of Heaven being so damn far away. When it first started playing I looked up at the stars and willed them to be closer – Heaven is NOT far; Heaven is NOT far; my FATHER is there… But when Stevie got to the line “Can you FEEL it – FEEL His SPIRIT?” Something inside me, and perhaps in us collectively, lurched and ached and resonated with the need to FEEL a SPIRIT. And we let that song play over and over until we finally needed silence again.
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As a musician, and one with sound-color synesthesia at that, experiencing beautiful music can be quite the adventure. So many Sunday afternoons of my childhood were spent lying on my back, enjoying the free fireworks show splashed across my ceiling, courtesy of the local classical station. I love tightly woven harmonies, especially in vocal music. They tower, stacked like rainbow lady fingers, the most gloriously delicious looking compacted ribbon river in existence. Multi-layered music is fascinating: in any given Stevie Wonder jam I can feast my senses on the lady finger harmonies hammock-holding the dancing melodic line over the bright flecks of rhythmic clapping and drumming; I always lose my breath during the vamp or instrumental solo because the color show is stunning.
However, it is nothing compared to the ecstasy of Debussy. Sweeping orchestral lines of lavender grace and mercy curve upward, bearing tender drops of clear piano elixir toward the sky.
Stimulating music can often get me into trouble when I am presented with the opportunity to meet one of the technicolor tapestry weavers in person, or more dangerously, to jam. Sounds with color and shape develop weight and thickness, texture and taste, until I am a girl on fire. Chocolate never had anything on a low-down dirty jam.
Daily Prompt: Eye of the Beholder.