Portland Protest Song

I feel pretty strongly about the role of the artist to support and facilitate the actions of the frontline folks.

Posters, stickers, flyers, digital and analog artworks all do their job bouying up the cause.

And music, music is the heartbeat and the soundtrack of life and of a revolution. Giving people the words and a beat to express their emotions and help to demonstrate the issues at hand is a calling.

For my small part, I have written a protest song and got my son to rap it for me. It’s currently on SoundCloud and will soon be on all major streaming platforms.

Edited to add:

Now it can be found on Spotify https://open.spotify.com/track/3reiMOExOkfJyLS53hhyy5?si=sVedswjUS0q7eZWEQPQlfg

And YouTube https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=qXUSNr4bFDM

And Apple Music as well.

https://music.apple.com/us/album/you-built-this-wall-feat-kyotothekid-single/1532956000

Remembering The Dead

For me, I end up not being a fan of September. It starts out okay. I love school starting up. I enjoy the easing of the temperatures.  I like fall. I like spring and fall best, but spring tends to be a riotous toddler freshly woke from a nap given to tantrums and erratic behavior. It’s just hard to keep up. Fall is more of a gentle easing. The hot, full, carefree party days of summer are through, though remembered with fondness, and we settle in to enjoy the harvest bounty while looking ahead toward the hibernative nature of the rest of the turning of the wheel.

This is good.

But then, you know, things have happened in September to make it less appealing. Personally for me, it’s my mom’s death. The 21st. This year I was hurrying to accomplish some legal things regarding her death before a time limit ran out. This involved me telling the specifics of the situation multiple times to multiple people who then declined to hear any more about it.

In the midst of this, the 11th showed up to pull the shades down a touch lower.

Sigh.

So I put out a question to my internet friends.

What songs do you listen to for cheering up and endurance, you’ll get through this inspiration?

I got lots of great suggestions, but one in particular hit the spot for me that day.

It’s funny how you forget things.

Things that were a very large part of your existence.

I grew up in a family that was very much into the Grateful Dead.

It was very much the background music of my childhood. And often the foreground music as well. We had lots of family gatherings that centered around us all going to their concerts. The fabric of my life is tie-dyed. Really.

So when someone suggested “I Will Survive” by the Grateful Dead (Touch of Grey, actually) I knew immediately that that was one I needed to listen to. And as I did, it reminded me of those times before.  Those times before I grew up and life got complicated. Before I had known much loss and change. Before she was gone. I listened to a few more of their songs* and felt really close to my mom again.

My heart settled and healed a bit.

It feels good to remember the Dead.

*other songs like:

friend of the devil

truckin

sugar magnolia

uncle john’s band

Portrait of an Awesome 9 Year Old

Scene 1:

I pick the kid up from the after school program one day. He points out some thing on the wall.

“That girl likes  me.”

“Do you like her?”

He runs ahead and gets a drink of water. He looks  up and grins.

“I’m being hard to get!”

“Well, that’s a good thing to be.”

“Hogan (his friend-same age) says to never make eye contact.”

“Hmm…”

 

Scene 2:

He is starting to really get into music and often will listen to Pandora Radio on my phone. Using headphones generally. We were meeting Daddy somewhere that I was just going to hang out in the car for a few minutes.

“Okay, leave my phone here with me.”

“I know.”

Unplugs headphones, but leaves them around his neck.

“I’m going to wear these like this because they make me look awesome!”

 

Scene 3:

…the following morning we’re getting ready for school. He grabs the headphones on the way out the door.

“I need these.”

“What for?”

“To wear.” (The “Duh” here is implied.)

(Also, he lasted half the day before someone told him they weren’t allowed to have those at school. She may not have known that they weren’t attached to anything, though. HIS teacher was fine with it.)

 

Scene 4:

Telling me some story about school goings on…

“Josh is the weirdest kid in my class. I’m second weirdest. Well, I’m tied for second place with Hogan.” Looks up and raises his arm valiantly. “I want to be weirdest!”

Scene 5:

Regarding the girl in scene 1…

“You know the girl who likes me?”

“Yeah.”

“Well, Andrew likes her. And he asked me “How do you make Maggie like you?” and I told him, “I act frickin’ awesome!””

“Well, that is how to get people to like you, by acting awesome.”

“But she doesn’t like me anymore.”

“No?”

“Yeah, today we went in the tower and I told her that I didn’t like her and she said she didn’t anymore either. So I’m letting Andrew have her.”

*Daddy was here for this one.*

“You are, huh? That’s nice of you,” he said dryly.

“Just stepping aside?” I asked.

[Whew! Dangerous love triangle averted!]

 

Scene 6:

Waiting at the bus stop this morning…

“Hogan and I made a pledge. and Cayden too, but he didn’t really because he didn’t raise his right hand but I get to raise my left hand because that’s my good hand. That we wouldn’t like girls until 5th grade.”

Curtain closes on Act I