I think it’s been pretty well established that music feeds my heart and soul. (If I have failed to make that clear, I should probably throw in the towel now.) But it’s bigger than just the song, bigger than the sounds coming from the speakers. When a piece of music speaks to me, there’s a fusion that takes place. I am no longer separate from the song; we become one. This alone is a powerful experience. The only thing I have found that expands on the enthrallment I experience as a listener, is the opportunity to share what I love with people I love.
When I meet like-minded people, those who can relate to (and even indulge in) my Compulsion, it always seems like there’s a halo of light surrounding them and yes, I hear angels singing in the far off distance. They say like attracts like and I’m damn thankful for the universal magnet that keeps bringing me my shiny-music-loving-soulmates. I exalt in the glorious kinship of a fellow music aficionado with exquisite taste; and there is nothing quite like the reverent AWE of witnessing musicians I adore creating something together, WHILE I’m in the company of friends who can appreciate on the same level as I do.
“Music and rhythm find their way into the secret places of the soul.” — Plato
Mmhmm. Oh yes, they do.
This year at SxSW I was able to witness one of the most hair-raising-palpitation-inducing collaborations ever. AND I was in the company of SIX of my very dearest music-loving friends. We were in a packed church and the room was silent. It was truly incredible. I did capture this performance, but the video [below] is a much better recording. (There are more videos and a few photos from this set HERE.)
I touched on my affinity for a stellar collaboration a couple of weeks ago; this performance is a BEAUTIFUL example of the art of coming together. I hope your very first reaction after listening was to press play again.
If you aren’t familiar with the work that Communion is doing, allow me to suggest a homework assignment: GET FAMILIAR. Their newsletter is one of the highlights of my week. The folks at Communion are working with some of the VERY best talent in the business. While largely UK based, they are also making an impact in Ireland, Australia and the United States. With under 7,000 “likes” (as of today) on facebook, I’d say the magic these folks are responsible for creating still falls into the “best kept secret” category, but trust me, this won’t be the case for long.
I saw a number of the Communion Showcases at SxSW, and I also caught the last installment of the “Austin to Boston Tour” which featured: Ben Howard, The Staves, Nathaniel Rateliff and Bear’s Den. Each individual set was incomprehensibly beautiful, but one of the major highlights of the show was seeing the various members of the bands that hadn’t played yet (or those that were already finished with their set) standing just off the stage dancing, clapping, and singing along with their friends who were on stage. That’s admiration. That’s respect. That’s love. That’s what makes a Communion show so memorable. I’m a fan for life. It was an honor and a privilege to be there in the crowd, partaking in it all.
My dear friend, Bre Goldsmith, caught this video from the set we watched together in Boston; this was how the show ended. And yet again, I was blessed enough to be in the company of four other people who truly get how awe-inspiring this kind of passion is.