Plain in the city

A plain Quaker folk singer with a Juris Doctorate in his back pocket, salt in his blood, and a set of currach oars in the closet, Ulleann Pipes under his arm, guitar on his back, Anglo Irish baggage, wandering through New York City ... in constant amaze. Statement of Faithfulness. As a member of the Quaker Bloggers Ad Hoc Committee I affirm that I will be faithful to the Book of Discipline of my Meeting 15th Street Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Reply to Sam, What is Quaker Music?

What is Quaker music? For me, well, let's start with a flyer from the 15th St. meeting on elements of Quaker practice: the testimonies, Community, Equality, Integrity Peace and Simplicity - Speaking truth to power, even when those truths may not be welcome... Listening for the truth in others.... Avoiding behavior that supports social ranking...

All these things make up the values of Quaker music, and then a few of my songs are Quaker histories.

Speaking the truth is the hardest, because there are times the songs I write speak plain truth - better phrase would be direct and honest. It is easy to be direct and honest with those who are distant and powerful, but some songs are honest and direct in the face of those people and things which capture a part of our heart that it is hard to speak plainly to, for fear of injury to someone. However, the greater injury is to look the other way when someone is walking in error for fear of hurting their ego.
( With thanks to Dyske and others for doing the same without a song and dance!)
So, I guess the bottom line is that it is not music written for simple value as a commodity.
Good start?


At 8:38 AM, Blogger Lorcan said...

And part of writing Quaker music, is to try to learn when to throw songs away that are just shite - or at least to understand we may try to be honest, but we can't be sure of the truth.

We look inside, but so much inside us is colored from all the things we try to understand on the outside of us... but don't really ever come to know truthfully...

So where does that leave us? It is hard to write a song as perfect as silence... but maybe that is the goal... silence is Quaker music perfected.


Post a Comment

<< Home