For many who do not know, I have a very strong musical background. I studied music, its theory, practice, and history, from the time I understood that playing by ear was a thing and would drive my parents insane by being in the “forbidden” front room where the old old piano, from the World’s Fair was, and tinkering away. Putting both hands together to force my audio-processing-deficient brain to wrap around over-played pieces by Beethoven and Mozart (which repetition does aid in learning, so I’m not too upset by those going round). Then on into college where I did study under two different virtuoso/prodigy musicians (not that I am ANY good, goodness, I’m AWFUL), but I’m saying I have and still am dedicated and love it. I have been very privileged because of all that.
Because of my love, my newest print, that I have had thankfully more time to work on, putting sweat, tears, and blood into, will be about music. Yes, it will still be dark. No, it has nothing to do with that crass sod Mozart. Regardless, I hope that people will be pleased and intrigued when it debuts, next year.
That's just a tiny teaser, if you will permit me my fun.
This is not a related piece, just me being sharing that I'm terrible at piano.
Music, theatre, the arts, and even frivolous fashions that spark creativity are needed to make a human thrive. They ease our hearts and make us healthier, and help us endure times of great unrest.
So I would like to share one composer, whom I hold dear to my heart, for his catchy compositional style, one of his preferred musical instruments that I, too, play (the violin...but again, I’m dreadful), and for his composition and playing technique, that could very well bring levity to your frilly heart.
So lift your spirits, put that face mask back on when heading out into the fray, do NOT forget this is still happening, and learn.
To be precise he had over 200 pieces published, some have been archived in the archives in the Library of Congress. Back when he lived, his pieces were considered very fashionable to be played and moreso to be performed by his traveling orchestra. He played for General Lafeyette on his return to the states and for the Queen of England.
Johnson was a highly sought after musician to hear, even creating the extended technique of singing WHILE playing. It is an extremely difficult technique and to hear it is a treat, it's often done in jazz orchestras and small bands of similar musical styles. So needless to say, the man was mighty and impressive. If you were anyone of anyone, you NEEDED to have an audience with Francis Johnson.
Unfortunately, time isn't kind, whiteness isn't good and buries others and erases people from history; out of the general eye, until other peoples' history is all but eviscerated. It's difficult to learn much about Francis Johnson unless you know where to look, or are a music major with access to documents. I do highly encourage learning more, listening more, and breathing new life into stories that should not be lost.
Be safe. Be kind. Educate yourself.
#blacklivesmatter #blacklivesstillmatter #francisjohnson #blackhistory