MP3 Mary Lou Prince & Patty Christiena Willis - Sonora Morning
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11 MP3 Songs in this album (47:21) !
Related styles: Folk: Alternative Folk, Classical: Art songs, Mood: Dreamy
People who are interested in Edith Piaf Erik Satie Jacques Brel should consider this download.
Prince and Willis
A few years ago, Mary Lou and I (Patty) visited an art museum in Adelaide, Australia. The museum guide pointed to paintings and said, âLook at their celebration of light.â The paintings exuded the joy of living with sunlight streaming through windows and filtering through fragrant eucalyptus leaves. Recently, our hearts led us to southern Arizona after twenty-four years in the dark, wet climate of western Japan. Both places overwhelm us with their beauty. The village where we lived in the foothills of the Japan Alps inspired novels, theater works and music recorded in other CDs: Light in the Woods and Armchair Magician. During three years in Arizona, our work has been transformed by the light and stories of these borderlands with Mexico. These songs are the fruit of that transformation.
Man from Magdalena
Living near Mexico, we became aware of the human tragedies enacted nightly in the harsh landscape. What could we do? We were artists and unable to bandage the physical wounds of the border. In our search for a way to help, we wrote the musical theater work Man from Magdalena. This play invites the audience to the frontera and gives voice to the songs and stories of the rancher, the migrant, his mother, and wife. Yet, this play (based on a true event) transcends the borders erected between countries and within our hearts. At the end, the ranchera sings: âWhen I stand in silence, only the wind through the trees, when I can hear my heartbeat, in the silence, I hear yours.â Half of the gross proceeds of all our performances of Man from Magdalena go to micro-loans in Mexico and Central America to help heal the economic roots of the tragic migration that is passing by our doors.
All of our songs begin with the first notes of inspirationâone of those miracles of sound. Mary Louâs eyes become distant and she reaches for a pencil. If she is driving, she says, âPlease take down these notes.â Over and over again, I have seen beautiful melodies emerge from those first snatches of sound. When a song is ready for words, Mary Lou prepares a lead sheet and puts it on my desk (with a smile). I listen to the melody again and again, meditatively like a Dervish twirling round and round in his dance. Sometimes right away and sometimes months later, I âseeâ the story inside the music and the lyrics are born. Often stories surface from my memory. âLight in the Windowâ is dedicated to our friend Maria Townsend who we met on a bench in Kruger Park of South Africa. She wrote of a man on a train looking out on a lonely landscape. The traveler sees a house with a light in the window and longs for home. The person in the house looks out at the train and longs to go on a journey. Her story helped us to understand and accept our desire for adventure and security at the same time. In a very real way, she helped us make the leap across the Pacific back to the land of our ancestors.
When we were creating these songs in our desert studio, the strong melodies and stories reminded us of French chansonsâbut they are very much American creationsâfirmly routed in this land, their arms reaching upwards to the blue desert sky. Ah, they are American chansons, we thought. Yes, yes.
Patty Christiena Willis
Recorded live at Jim Brady Studios, Tucson, AZ
Cover design Lisa LeRose
Produced by CPW Records
in partnership with CDbaby
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