Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Music-Family-Music Sandwich Weekend--Part 1

This past weekend was great fun! I had a music-family-music sandwich of a weekend. Friday night began with a very fun musical experience...let's start with a piece of crusty Grand Central Bakery olive bread (my favorite!).

The band I've been playing in, "Consorting with Papists," performed at a coffeehouse fundraiser at our church, Mission of the Atonement. The purpose was to raise money for the Benedict Inn Retreat and Conference Center in Indiana, where our pastor went through a multi-year program called "Women Touched by Grace" for female clergy.

It was the third official performance of the band, and we added seven new songs to our repertoire (we're now up to about 17). As I mentioned in a previous post, I even wrote my first song in 18 years (Mike contributed to the lyrics, too). I wanted to write a song about what our generation and our parents' generations were taught about different faiths, races, and sexual orientations, and how our children are leading us in a different, more peaceful direction.

While many of us were told or encouraged to marry within our own denominations, for example, many of the children in our community refer to themselves as "Lutheran-Catholic." In my children's minds, the only difference they are so far aware of is that you can have grape juice at Lutheran communion, but not Catholic. My children have not even seemed to notice that Barack Obama is part African-American. They only know that some people do not believe that two-mommy families are not embraced by everyone because we have told them so (and why we don't support organizations like the Boy Scouts).

Here are the words:

The Children Will Lead Us

Chorus:

The children will lead us
The children will lead us into the light
Showing us new paths to peace
And making our whole world bright

Verses:

1. When I was growing up,
My friends told me Jews were going to hell
You had to be Christian to drink at the well
Don’t question the bible…it comes from the Lord
Be a good Christian—you’ll get your reward. (Chorus)

2. When you were growing up,
There was one way to heaven, and St. Peter keeps track
Confess all your sins or there’s no going back
Don’t think of abandoning your parents’ faith
Just follow the rules and you’ll play it safe. (Chorus)

3. Go to church on all holy days
Just do what they say and you’ll be okay
You’ll get kicked out if ever you stray
Read the right books and vote with the Pope
And take your communion to save your soul. (Chorus)

4. My cousin told me pastors had to be men.
Jesus was a guy, stands to reason
So only boys could serve the altar
Catholic girls could teach religious ed
But women in the church, you’re not the head (Chorus)

4. When you get married, don’t stray from your faith
Have lots of children—God thinks it’s great
Don’t use those condoms, don’t take that pill
Don’t mix with others who don’t think like you
They may be alright but they’ll never be true (Chorus)

5. As our children grow up
They see people for who they really are
No race, religion, or creed
It doesn’t matter who you love
A family is a rainbow gift from God (Chorus)

Mike took a few photos of the band performance, but I don't like any of them so I'm not going to post them! Perhaps I can locate some later.

I've been under a lot of stress at work lately, and band practices have been a huge destressor for me. I think they've served that purpose in other people's lives too. It's so much fun to play music with such musically talented people, and also to perform original songs. (Two of the other songs were written by other band members.)

I joke with the others that I'm a lazy guitarist (and mandolinist, too!). I learned how to play at age 10 and mastered the basic chords, but I find a way around anything too hard! I took guitar lessons for a few years, but mostly it's just a hobby. This might be a sexist observation, but I'm guessing that in many cases boys/men are more likely to sit around jamming on their guitars than girls/women are. I commented to Mike that I could try to squeeze more practice time in to improve my skills, but if I did that, I'd probably have to give up on some of my reading time. (And that would be very hard to give up...) As it is, if I had any more free time in my life, I should REALLY spend it on cleaning my house!!!

We are hoping to continue practicing once a month and continue performing occasionally. I hope we can do so! It's inspired me to spend more time on my music and actually learn some more complicated chording. Maybe I am not doomed to be a lazy guitarist forever...

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