Saturday, February 09, 2008


Well, there's been no activity here for some time, and that's almost entirely due to the death of my mother at the end of last year, after a series of illness over the past few years.

I've written about her before, and rather than go into any great detail, since this is a music blog, and if I can indulge a bit, I thought I'd just share some of the music I was lucky enough to hear, while growing up, as well as one song I had the pleasure of introducing my mom to, and playing piano for.

First, two acetates, both of which I believe are from around 1944, when she was perhaps 20 years old:

A Broadway standard, recorded in the late 1950's:

A more gorgeous piece you're unlikely to find, than "Shepherd on the Rock", heard here from 1959. This is admittedly quite lengthy, but I love it. There is an unfortunate splice right near the end of the piece, which cuts out a few moments of the big finish:

The following version of Mozart's Alleluia, recorded around 1965, was played at my mother's funeral:

And finally, a song by William Bolcom, which became mom's signature piece near the end of her life, particularly once her days as a soprano soloist were coming to an end. That's me fumbling around on piano, and the picture below this link is of the two of us, performing the song (not the same time as this recording) at mom's 80th birthday party:

Thanks for everything, mom.


Ola said...

It gives me the shivers just listening to the music and looking at the pictures of your mother. She must have been a lively dame. My condolances to you. I will appreciate my own mother more as long as she is here.

kdella said...

This is Kara, and I've lost your email address.
My sincerest condolences to you. I know you had spoken about her health to me before.
I was hoping to check in with you, and I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. I wish you and your family the best.

Kip W said...

Thanks for sharing these lovely tracks. What a treat. Making music at home is a wonderful thing, and it must have been great to be able to hear things like this live.

My dad still plays piano at 87. His hearing has been bad for years, but he's still a good player. We lost Mom at the start of 2008, though we'd been losing her bit by bit for a dozen years before that.