Sunday, June 04, 2006

A Musical Weekend

I digress

This weekend has been filled with music - two distinctly different kinds of music.

On Friday night we saw Petula Clark. I remembered her from the 60's but the only song I remembered was Downtown. Did she have any others? Was she a one hit wonder with a name that stuck?

I won't go through her resume - check her out on the Internet.
This is what Wikipedia has to say about her:

"Petula Sally Olwen Clark, CBE, (born November 15, 1932), is a British singer, actress and composer, best known for her upbeat popular international hits of the 1960s. With nearly 70 million recordings sold worldwide, she is the most successful British solo recording artist to date. She also holds the distinction of having the longest span on the international pop charts of any artist—51 years—from 1954, when "The Little Shoemaker" made the UK Top Twenty, through 2005, when her CD "L'essentiel - 20 Succès Inoubliables" charted in Belgium."

"......."Downtown" went to #1 on the US charts in January 1965 and ultimately sold three million copies in America alone. It was the first of fifteen consecutive Top 40 hits Clark scored in the US, including "I Know A Place", "My Love", "A Sign of the Times", "I Couldn't Live Without Your Love", "Color My World", "This Is My Song" (from the Charles Chaplin film A Countess from Hong Kong), and "Don't Sleep In The Subway." The American recording industry honored her with Grammy Awards for "Best Rock & Roll Record" for "Downtown" in 1964 and for "Best Contemporary Female Vocal Performance" for "I Know a Place" in 1965. In 2003, her recording of "Downtown" was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame."

For someone that was born in 1932 she still has an unbelievably clear and strong voice (yep she's close to 74 years old!) It was a great show - very professional and she told terrific stories between terrific songs!

Saturday night we went to see the Prairie Pride Chorus - Regina's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered Choir. They were performing Watershed Stories 1 and 2. James McNinch and Scott Thompson both sing in the choir.

Watershed Stories are a series of songs that in some ways tell the stories of the men and women in the choir - the words and music were written by David McIntyre the choir's conductor. It was a terrific night - the voices were very good and the words and music created every kind of emotion possible.

I felt in some ways I understood what was being portrayed through my own feelings of marginalization, being different, having to defend myself as a jew in a christian world. Clearly the parallels are limited - my parents and relatives were jewish, etc. - but the need to understand and take joy in the differences is similar.

I'm glad we went to both these concerts. Petula brought back my youth but showed that age doesn't need to diminish powers and that all those experiences and memories are good things. And the Chorus reminded me that this world is made up of such a wonderful variety of people and opinions and needs.

Age, differences, abilities, experiences, memories, drive, determination, focus, are all things this weekend got me thinking about. Its a pretty good world when people with talent can use that talent to educate, inform, stimulate and entertain.

It was a good weekend