It seems the past 6 months have flown by at such a speed that a lot of it is a blur, so these days I am practicing gratitude for the slower pace of life in this challenging time in our lives. I am taking this opportunity to focus on the things that I love and allow myself to nurture a balance in my daily life. By focusing on the Beauty of Nature and Music and Art, I am able to counterbalance the level of the energy that comes of watching the news unfold every day.
That being said, I have also been embracing the increased level of communication on the internet that has become necessary and getting comfortable with learning new skills. I am also painting quite a bit and re-working my Website Paintings page to make my art more accessible and available as I plan to post the new series of “Pandemic Paintings” that is filling my studio! Please check them out as we move along.
While contemplating the many issues before us in the Covid19 pandemic, I remembered that a number of years ago I recorded “Living Room” by Abbey Lincoln and Max Roach and that the lyric is so reminiscent of what we are experiencing now. We are staying at home, we are “streaming live concerts from our living rooms”, we fear infection from contact with others, we are observing the reaction to violence in our society and see the growing awareness of prevalent racism in our world. This song is an anti-dote to that sense of social foreboding… It’s an upbeat tune that dances along with exciting lyrics about needing space and the room to love and to play in order to feel good and thrive!
What else have I been up to? Being home so much, I am weeding the garden more than I have in years! And I’ve witnessed every flower that graces our yard since it was planted years ago! I am also painting, writing music and poetry. After many years of playing in ensembles, I am enjoying sounds and spaces at home as Solo and even sometimes with others on Zoom! Joe Lovano and I have done a series of “Livestreams” as a duo which has allowed for my painting a new canvas in real-time. Talk about Visual Improvisation – wow! This time at home has also lead me to practice my student Gemeinhardt flute and to play piano without expectation. Improvisation is a great tool for connecting with one’s deep and personal expression of the rhythms of Life. Listen and Flow. I am also recording short Solo videos of favorite songs, which I will post eventually.
A long-term project with my frequent collaborator, guitarist Bruce Arnold, is that we have been preparing an album of New Compositions. This will be the 3rd of our Electro-Acoustic Duo “Sonic Twist” and given the state of affairs in our world, as of yet the release is unscheduled. Also in the works is a series of collaborations with artist/videographer Michal Shapiro which features dancers Maria Mitchell and Hilary Brown seen interpretating the music of “Sonic Twist”. I envision releasing a DVD so people can enjoy the music and dance together as a full artistic statement. Stay tuned for more news about these upcoming releases!
I am so grateful for the friends and colleagues with whom I have worked and shared so many magical moments in musical collaboration. I know we will continue to learn and grow during this extended period of time at home, and I look forward to sharing more moments of transcendance together. Stay home, stay safe and stay healthy!
Big Virtual Hugs – Judi Silvano