Harps and conversation

Today, I took a day trip. I’m feeling very pleased with the results. Briefly, I drove from home (in Minneapolis) to Red Wing, for a conversation in a coffee shop, and then went to my favorite harp and music store. So, you’re going to get me talking about the conversation (a little) and then harps.

For those who aren’t familiar with Minnesota, Red Wing is a small city on the Mississippi, about 60 minutes south east of the Twin Cities. (East across the river, it’s Wisconsin.) My harp (on which more later) came from Stoney End, a folk harp maker based just northwest of Red Wing, and I’ve gone down there when I have the money to spend on harp music.

Before we get to the harp, though, there’s conversation.

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Down in the Darkness (original chant)

Over on my LiveJournal, I got encouraged to post a recording of music for something else I was working on, if I ever get it written (that one’s a sung circle case, maybe.) To test out what it’d take to do that, I thought I’d record a much shorter and simpler chant I wrote about three years ago.

It’s called Down in the Darkness

I didn’t write it for anything in particular (it hit me over the head while driving to work), but we’ve since used it for Yule rituals, and for other trance work. It’s very easy for people to sing harmonies to (and there are all sorts of places you can take the harmony). Two hints: it’s easier to sing slightly faster, and it’s important to keep the consonants crisp, or you will start falling over your tongue (or sound like a snake!)

There are two variants for the words : “A name”

Down in the darkness, I hear a silence.
Down in that silence, I hear a name.

and “my name”

Down in the darkness, I hear a silence.
Down in that silence, I hear my name.


Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

(if for some reason the player doesn’t work, try: http://gleewood.org/threshold/audio/darkness.mp3

Please get permission before using this elsewhere. I’m very likely to give permission for use within the Pagan community, but I’d like to know where it’s spread to, and where it’s getting used. (Also, I can then more easily tell you about other similar things in the future you might like!)

To get permission, you can post a comment on this entry, or you can send email to jenett at this domain (gleewood.org). Thanks!