September 9, 2012


Radio hits from the year we got married:

ABBA Waterloo
Ace How Long
Al Green Take Me To The River
America Lonely People
America Tin Man
Andy Kim Rock Me Gently
Average White Band Pick Up The Pieces
B.T. Express Do It ('Til You're Satisfied)
Bachman-Turner Overdrive You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet
Bachman-Turner Overdrive Let It Ride
Bachman-Turner Overdrive Takin' Care of Business
Bad Company Can't Get Enough
Bad Company Bad Company
Barbra Streisand The Way We Were
Barry White You're The First, The Last, My Everything
Barry White Can't Get Enough of Your Love
Billy Preston Nothing From Nothing
Billy Swan I Can Help
Blue Swede Hooked On A Feeling
Bo Donaldson & The Heywoods Billy, Don't Be A Hero
Bob Dylan & The Band Forever Young
Bobby Vinton My Melody of Love
Carl Carlton Everlasting Love
Carl Douglas Kung Fu Fighting
Carol King Jazz Man
Cat Stevens Another Saturday Night
Cat Stevens Oh Very Young
Cher Dark Lady
Chicago Wishing You Were Here
Dave Loggins Please Come To Boston
David Bowie Rebel Rebel
David Essex Rock On
Dolly Parton I Will Always Love You
Doobie Brothers Black Water
Eagles Best Of My Love
Eagles Already Gone
Electric Light Orchestra Can't Get It Out Of My Head
Elton John The Bitch Is Back
Elton John Bennie & The Jets
Elton John Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me
Elton John Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds
Eric Clapton I Shot The Sheriff
First Class Beach Baby
Frankie Valli My Eyes Adored You
Freddy Fender Before The Next Teardrop Falls
George McRae Rock Your Baby
Glady Knight & the Pips Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me
Gloria Gaynor Never Can Say Goodbye
Golden Earring Radar Love
Gordon Lightfoot Carefree Highway
Gordon Lightfoot Sundown
Grand Funk Railroad Some Kind Of Wonderful
Grand Funk Railroad The Loco-Motion
Guess Who Clap For The Wolfman
Harry Chapin Cat's In the Cradle
Helen Reddy Angie Baby
Hollies The Air That I Breathe
Hues Corporation Rock The Boat
Jackson 5 Dancing Machine
Jackson Browne Late For The Sky
Jethro Tull Bungle in the Jungle
Jim Croce I'll Have to Say I Love You in a Song
Jimmy Buffett Come Monday
Joe Cocker You Are So Beautiful
John Denver Annie's Song
John Denver Sunshine On My Shoulder
John Lennon Whatever Gets You Thru The Night
John Lennon #9 Dream
Joni Mitchell Free Man in Paris
Joni Mitchell Help Me
Led Zeppelin D'yer Mak'er
Linda Ronstadt You're No Good
Love Unlimited Orchestra Love's Theme
Lynyrd Skynyrd Sweet Home Alabama
Lynyrd Skynyrd Call Me The Breeze
Maria Muldaur Midnight at the Oasis
Marvin Gaye Distant Lover [Live]
Marvin Hamlisch The Entertainer
MFSB Feat. The Three Degrees TSOP (The Sound Of Philadelphia)
Mike Oldfield Tubular Bells (Exorcist)
Minnie Riperton Lovin' You
Mocedades Eres Tu
Nazareth Love Hurts
Neil Diamond Longfellow Serenade
Neil Sedaka Laughter in the Rain
Ohio Players Fire
Ozark Mountain Daredevils Jackie Blue
Paper Lace The Day Chicago Died
Paul Anka (You're) Having My Baby
Paul McCartney & Wings Jet
Paul McCartney & Wings Live and Let Die
Paul McCartney & Wings Band on The Run
Pilot Magic
Prelude After the Gold Rush
Queen Killer Queen
Ray Stevens The Streak
Rick Derringer Rock & Roll Hoochie-Koo
The Righteous Brothers Rock And Roll Heaven
Ringo Starr You're Sixteen (You're Beautiful And You're Mine)
Roberta Flack Feel Like Making Love
The Rolling Stones It's Only Rock N' Roll
Rolling Stones Ain't Too Proud To Beg
Rufus Tell Me Something Good
Santana Samba Pa Ti
Stealers Wheel Star
Steve Miller Band The Joker
Stevie Wonder Boogie On Reggae Woman
Stevie Wonder You Haven't Done Nothing
Supertramp Bloody Well Right
Supertramp Dreamer
Terry Jacks Seasons In The Sun
Three Degrees

When Will I See You Again

(There are still a few more to add, but they don't get added to this list until I actually have the songs in my iTunes. Check in again next year for more!)

On anniversaries, I also like to play "Happy Anniversary Baby" by the Little River Band and
"Still the One" by Orleans.  They're not from 1974, but they're such perfect anniversary songs!

May 11, 2012

You Need a Ritual!

The suspense was killing me... what kind of ritual have my friends concocted for me?  The only limitations we had discussed were: no human sacrifice and no snake venom.  Beyond that little joke, anything could happen. How woo-woo would it be?  I could hardly wait to find out.

But these ladies are Jewish... and they're good!  They showed up clutching a few things I couldn't exactly see, and some sheets of paper (we are Jewish, therefore we xerox). They were all quietly excited, appeared to be floating slightly above the floor, and I was too. They asked for matches & foil. Then Eddy put on a kippah, and an amazing experience began.

First they lit up some sage bundless, and Diane smudged the room, the doorway, and me.  It felt right.  Then Julie gently sprayed a scent that she compounded just for me... designed to refresh, renew, and inspire. Together the scents created a special atmosphere.

Eddy had brought a beautiful hand-made blue glass bowl with the word Ahavah (love) fused into it; she filled it with warm water and added a touch of the spray.  This was to be a hand-mikveh: a cleansing for the creative hands, and also for the eyes.  As I washed my hands in the water, they all sang Hebrew prayers that Eddy wrote, to a Debbie Friedman melody. They asked God to bless the hands, bless the eyes, and bless me.  They blessed God for the gift of talent, and I silently blessed God for the gift of true friends.

Then a candle was lit, which I held like a Havdalah candle, and we created a hevdel... a separation between the past and the future in this room.  We blessed HaMakom... the name of God, and also this place that is my studio. We blessed the source of life who releases the one who is bound.  We sang Shehechiyanu.

This was incredibly moving, and each person briefly said what was in her heart. We cried a little, hugged a little, and reluctantly said goodbye.  I gave them each a little thank-you gift, a tiny pink flashlight, with thanks for helping to light my way. These are all ORA women... it seemed appropriate.

I wish I could describe to you how this room feels now.  It's so peaceful and stable.  I don't recall it ever feeling this way.  The love of many people has gone into it, my gratitude inhabits it, and I trust that wonderful things will emerge from it.

Baruch HaMakom.

This Is What Friends Do.

About a month or so ago I expressed to some artist friends my frustration with artist's block. I was on the verge of tears, when one of the women said "you need a ritual."  We all perked up and looked at her, and she continued..."maybe you need help to get un-blocked, to interrupt the cycle of  I-shoulds and I-used-to's and I'm-not-sures, and let yourself fly."  Immediately the others got excited and volunteered to create a ceremony of some sort for me.

Then the conversation continued. Soon I heard myself say "if you've seen my desk lately, you know it's not just ME that needs un-blocking." OMG, that's when something serious was launched!  Diane, who said I needed a ritual, and Laurie, who is an interior designer, both volunteered to come over and actually help me re-organize  my desk & office/studio.  Only I knew what a huge job this would really be, but I recognized immediately that their offer was exactly what I needed: someone else's perspective.

I took a deep breath and accepted all of their offers.  Diane and Laurie came over and helped me get started on re-organizing the whole room. Not only did they analyze the functions of various areas, and suggest different flow patterns, they actually sat down and helped sort through endless piles of stuff, bead by bead! Rather than accept my promises of "I'll get to that next," they pushed me to clear off the desk NOW.  It was scary, but also exhilarating. We cleared the disastrous desktop that first day!

Since then, I've put in a huge amount of work, continuing the process. Going through boxes, bags and piles, getting rid of a lot of stuff, sorting and organizing lots more.  I've bought some needed storage units, and parted with old favorites to make room for them. I've found things I was missing, eliminated stuff I won't miss at all, and the purge has extended to other rooms in the house. It's still an evolving process, but this room is now usable.

And the Ritual?  It happened this morning.  I'm going to write about it in the next post.

Here's just one view of the before-and-after.