Archive for the 'Sarah Sings' Category

April in Minneapolis

Posted by on May 13 2015 | Sarah Sings, Songtaneous

While April in Minneapolis is sometimes less than charming in terms of the weather, it’s always full of singing. And, it includes my birthday making it one of my very favorite months. *smile*

If a blog is like a journal or scrapbook, the here’s my entry for April 2015.

BLU-7 at the Nicollet, April 2015

BLU-7 at the Nicollet, April 2015

I heard BLU-7 guitarist Jim Ouska sing his song “Halfway around the World” last summer and fell in love with it. I told him then and there that I wanted to sing it. When tasked with creating a set of contemporary tunes this spring, BLU-7 debuted our version of his haunting tune.

Halfway Around the World, BLU-7 (click the red triangle to play)

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with Coloring Time at the Icehouse, April 2015

Coloring Time at the Icehouse, April 2015

On the first Tuesday of the month, the improv collective Coloring Time takes the stage and serves up a night of invented music and spoken word. In April, I got to join them for a satisfying and soul-stirring evening.

I particularly liked this spontaneous composition about composing spontaneously.

It All Comes Out (excerpt), Coloring Time (click the red triangle to play)

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The Cast of Beauty and the Beast, Northeast Middle School

The Cast of Beauty and the Beast, Northeast Middle School

Oh how I wish I had an audio clip to share of the cast at Northeast soldiering on after we blew a fuse during the Thursday night performance! The lights came back on (thank heavens), but they performed the end of Be Our Guest (and the rest of the show) a cappella!

It was sight (and sound!) to behold; Bravo!

 …

Jay Young and the Lyric Factory at the Dakota, April 2015

Jay Young and the Lyric Factory at the Dakota, April 2015

I got to celebrate the conclusion of Beauty and the Beast at Northeast and my birthday at the Dakota with Jay Young and his Lyric Factory.

Happy Birthday (to me), Lyric Factory

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2015-05-13 GGS@NVF

Give Get Sistet at Northern Voice Festival, April 2015

The Give Get Sistet and I traveled to our twin city St. Paul for the first annual Northern Voice Festival in April. With the help of our audience, we improvised a trip abroad.

Red London Dawn Improv, Give Get Sistet (click the red triangle to play)

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My latest collaboration is with my friend and mentor Anthony Cox. The quartet, called Riotus N, features Anthony on bass, John Penny on guitar, Davu Seru on drums with me on vocals.

More (excerpt), Riotus N (click the red triangle to play)

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Listening for Instructions

Posted by on Feb 23 2015 | Sarah Sings, Songtaneous

A big part of spontaneous singing is what I call listening for “instructions.” Instructions are those ideas and impulses about what to do or try that you might ignore in other situations.

Consider this, you may be the only person to hear a part that’s “missing” from the piece. By adding your idea, the whole work becomes more relevant to you and to the rest of the singing circle. Or to put it another way …

There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening, that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.
– Martha Graham

Some of you – writers, storytellers and other word lovers – have the gift of language. Music calls up words, phrases, a line from a poem or another song. Give yourself permission to say it. And I encourage you to say it so that we can hear it – that it truly becomes a part of the music we’re making.

Others are drummers or dancers — you want to add rhythmic elements, tap your feet, clap your hands, click your tongues, dance, stomp your feet, wave your arms or wiggle your hips. Don’t be shy; the music needs rhythm and movement.

Then we have you, the songsters, songstresses and melody makers – you hear the melodies and their harmonies. You tend to hear the pieces as songs, you can find the beginning, middle and end of a piece. You can create structures.

Of course, all of us have all of these talents to varying degrees. The distribution of these talents is as unique as each singer in the circle.

The fun part is finding the music that each unique circle (ensemble, band, etc.) can create when they bring their portions of these talents together.

I recently got to play an entire evening of improvised music with some very fine musicians (Riotus N featuring Anthony Cox, Davu Seru and John Penny). My cohorts and I experimented with melodic and textural ideas and I tinkered with stories and tales.

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Between in Duluth

Posted by on Nov 13 2013 | Events, Sarah Sings, Songtaneous

Between at Sacred heart

In rehearsal for Monday night's concert

The time and concert in Duluth were amazing. I’ll say more when I am bit further through the cooldown.

For now let me share a sneak peak at what we recorded.

Sing About My Love

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Carry on Down

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