Overcoming Tremendous Challenges As They Pursue Their Dreams

I enjoy stories

Reading them, hearing them read out loud, listening to a storyteller.

Among my favourites are those featuring people who were faced with seemingly insurmountable challenges and with their inner strength along with the love of others at their side, they managed to climb those mountains and reach the summit.  And what a joy it is to witness them in those sweet moments of their achievement.

I give you two such stories that were shared with me a couple of weeks ago.  They feature two different young people whose big dreams – at their particular summit – were to share their love of singing.

Here are youtube links to watch, and I hope they bring you inspiration, as they did for me.

The first one features a young lady, Kechi Okwuchi…

 

 

 

And for the story featuring Christian Guardino, I couldn’t find a link that had everything combined, so the first link gives you his performance, and the second one gives you his background story.

 

 

*****

 

With different instruments….still as beautiful

One of my friends shared this clip with me yesterday

And I’d like to share it with you.

I love this cover!  

In addition to being played in a beautiful traditional Japanese way……do those instruments ever sound amazing!!…….BUT also being one of my most FAVIEST of songs!! And it wasn’t because of its popularity that I’ve always loved the Zeppelin version, but that there’s always something about it that seems to strongly resonate with me in the musicality of the song.

These Japanese players have given it a similar feel – I had goosebumps!!

I searched on youtube for this clip, as the original came from another source….and the BONUS part is at the very beginning they have added in some educational information on this unique instrument….the Nijugen-Koto.  And there’s the other quite similar instrument….the Jushichigen-Koto.  The flutes are called Shakuhachi.

Always something new to learn!

 

An Unusual Singer

Yesterday I found heart-warming inspiration from an unexpected source.

I happened to glance at the activities of some of my Facebook friends and stopped at one where I read that one of my friends had liked a particular video post…..about a deaf singer performing at a talent show.

One other time I had come across a Ted Talk in which a woman was talking about her experience about being deaf and being involved in music, and she had been deaf at a young age.  She had overcome various challenges in her life and had fulfilled her dream of being a professional musician, or more precisely, a percussionist.

So, with that in mind, I was especially intrigued with this new post.

What increased the intrigue was that this other young woman – singer/songwriter – was appearing on the show, “America’s Got Talent,” which I generally don’t watch.  But now being somewhat savvy  that deafness doesn’t mean that a person can’t achieve their musicianship dreams,  I had a hunch this would be a ground-breaking experience.  Ever since Susan Doyle wowed the judges on the British equivalent show – where she overcame her hurdle of no formal training and wavering self-confidence – I keep a keen eye and ear open to those more “unique” aspiring singers.

Well.

What an incredibly momentous experience for this young lady!

Mandy Harvey – inspiring and amazing – how she handled overcoming her biggest obstacle….herself.

No spoilers from me, but I encourage you to watch this clip.

 

 

Singing in Unison…But Not Together

That sounds like a bit of a paradox, right?

How can a group of people, or more precisely, over 2,000, be singing together on one song as a choir….and yet, not be in the same room at the same time.

That’s where the innovative thinking and composing skills of Eric Whitacre come in.

Come and have a look and listen to one of….’his “Virtual Choir” projects, bringing individual voices from around the globe together into an online choir.’  (Wikipedia)

Here is “Fly to Paradise”…..

Saying Good-bye to Mary

Saying good-bye to another inspiring, beautiful soul.

 

mary-tyler-moore-google-images

(photo courtesy of Google images)

*****

She made me laugh; she had me smiling; she had me thinking.

Mary Tyler Moore inspired me. From the days of the Dick Van Dyke show and with her own show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show. I loved those shows. Great stories – well written and acted dramatic and comedic bits.  She became a role model for me to be confident and take on challenges and face the world with optimism.

Thank you, Mary.

And…..

I just found this video clip today.

 

COOL!

Good to see Joan Jett put her spin on The Mary Tyler Moore show’s theme song, “Love is All Around.” 😀

A fun tribute!

“Who can turn the world on with her smile?

Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile?”

 

 

A Taste of….Wrongful Conviction!

As I have mentioned on a few previous posts, in addition to writing and blogging and other jobs, I also am busily involved with music, having experienced being in bands and performing live as well. (And I started eight years ago, when I took up drumming lessons)

Here in the Ottawa area is an organized opportunity – called the League of Rock – for aspiring musicians to take part for 10-week sessions in being put together in bands, learning 3-5 songs, having weekly rehearsals, getting coached from mostly local professional musicians, getting to perform live, as well as going into a recording studio to experience the process of recording one song.

I have taken part in four sessions – started in the fall session 2015 and finished with this last fall session – and it’s been an amazing experience!  I have met so many keen and talented musicians and had a LOT of fun.  There are a lot of friendships made, and also a sense of family created amongst the participants.

Truly memorable moments.

Here is the video that my band finally received from the photographer about our part of the finale live performance, where all five of the bands in this fall session showed the appreciative audience what they’d been working on.

*****

Videographer – Christopher Paine

The Hang…part Two

A girlfriend just shared a youtube link, featuring a young man who’s performing fascinating, rhythmic, and melodically rich music with his hang drum.

And since I have a particular interest in hang drums, as I described in an earlier post – from September 14th, you can see it here – I decided to share this clip with you as well. This street player is self-taught and he incorporates a diversity of sound in his playing; even adding in separate percussive elements!  Wow!

As I was doing a bit of research, as a result of what the young man says to the street crowd before he starts playing, I learned that the instrument is correctly referred to as The Hang.

The Hang “is a musical instrument in the idiophone class created by Felix Rohner and Sabina Schärer in Bern, Switzerland (developed in 2000).” – Wikipedia

I invite you to check it out!  😀

 

My Beloved “Born Free”

Here is a montage of photos from a youtube channel I just found, when I went searching for links to go with my beloved “Born Free” song.
I say beloved, because from the first time I heard the song and saw the movie, it made its home in my heart.

Something about Elsa, the lioness, and her caring human friends touched me deeply.

Every time….and I mean EVERY time I hear that song, I get all choked up inside. It’s a good choked up. My eyes water. I have no idea why, but it gets to me.

I suppose because it’s a song that speaks of freedom, which is the joy and true being of every creature on earth – human and animal – and to be born free and to live free is so important.
Thank you, Spotify algorithms for sharing the song again with me…..Matt Monro sings it.  I forever associate the song with his voice, too.

I love Elsa’s story.
I have had a soft spot for the large cats, since I was a young girl.
Panthers, tigers, leopards…..and especially lions.
The movie “Born Free” came out in 1966, so I was 6.
It made a lasting impression on me.

Even when watching the movie again years later, that child-like love resurfaced.

It’ll also explain why I felt compelled to get all THREE books at one point in my teen years. The two movies were based on the books (Born Free, Living Free, Forever Free) – written by Joy Adamson, describing the adventures she and her husband, George, experienced, when they lived in Kenya. Among their adventures was when they rescued orphaned Elsa, raised her and successfully (with some challenges, of course) returned her to the wild.
And Elsa managed to be part of a lion pride again and have her own cubs.

But mostly I fell in love with Elsa. Her wild and gentle spirit.

Here’s the song…..perhaps you’ve heard it before?

 

NOTE:  There are photos in this montage excerpted from Joy Adamson’s books and from the movie, “Born Free.”

 

THIS COULD BE A REPOST

Yesterday I was listening to several old songs by The Grass Roots; it brought back memories of my younger years. Now I see this blog post of one of their hit songs with these timely and meaningful lyrics. They speak to me. I decided to share with you, in case they spoke to you as well.
Have a listen.

sittinginyourlittleroom | a COLLECTION of ODD WORDS and STRANGE NOISES

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A Soundtrack that infused so much “atmosphere” into this space movie

Yup, I am a movie buff.

Except I don’t know if that really describes it well enough.

It’s more of a deeper, in-depth appreciation of movies and the work that goes into the making of them. I have been fascinated about the process…..for years! Always those questions, how do they create that….the sets……the stunts……the music? So MUCH work can be put into a 2-hour film. So much that we as viewers don’t know.

It’s been an exciting journey to see the progression over the years….from times when one could only see a new movie in the cinema and then have to wait a few years before it showed up on TV as an evening featured movie – which is why I tended to buy the novels of my favourite movies in order to read and re-read them, so I could keep the memory of them alive and fresh in my mind.

Then came videos! That opened up a whole new world of getting to view favourites again….and sooner! And as often as one liked!

Okay, that there…..was heaven on earth! ^_^

And then VHS moved towards DVDs…..AND then came movies with the option of seeing background footage, deleted scenes, makings-of, and excerpts of the creators at work.

At that point I was in bliss!

Whenever I saw mention of BONUS MATERIAL, the excitement would be heightened in the watching of a movie on DVD. AND to make extra mention of those films where an incredible amount of detailed work was put into that material for the fans to enjoy – not all DVDs bonus material was at the same level of depth – but usually for the ones my kids and I loved.

Take the movie “Interstellar” for example. Mind you, we were Chris Nolan fans at this point, and even so, Interstellar took us for a humdinger of a ride!

Even though we are keenly aware of the amount of work that went into the making of that film, on occasion we still find something to boggle our minds once again, which brings me to this youtube clip that my lads just found about the process of the creation of the distinctive soundtrack……AND the organ and incredibly skilled organ player who took it to the next level – OMG! Absolutely cool and amazing!!