Thursday, December 6th, 2018
I love these long, velvety nights approaching Winter Solstice, where we turn to each other for comfort, warmth, and good cheer. I love the jig-jaggy strings of Christmas lights poking through the darkness, and I love scrambling to find enough candles to light the menorah for eight consecutive nights of Hanukah, marching around the living room with my kids, botching the words to Ma’oz Tzur (which means “Stronghold of Rock,” a fitting tune for Solid Fire Consulting!).
These long evenings grant us space to connect and rest -alone and with others- and I hope you are able to find both.
I’ve been thinking a lot about music and how much it can lift or change or amplify what’s going on with a group. Music is powerful stuff. I have quite the soft spot for highly danceable funk and disco tunes and love to crank them up after a hard week and dance it out in the living room -alone, with my daughter, and with friends. I use music in my facilitation, as well, to energize groups as they work through a long day together.
This may have been the most fun blog I’ve ever written, as I listen, bop, and winnow down a Solid Fire Winter Playlist to share with you.
Yet, I’m actually a little shy and sometimes even diffident when it comes to discussing music. I’m married to a professional musician, and over the years -as couples are often wont to do- I have outsourced that area of home and hearth maintenance to Andrew, and by extension other folks. I generally rely on other people’s curation of good tunes for my feel-good vibes. My son’s and yoga teacher’s playlists come to mind.
So, I feel vulnerable about sharing with you, my readers, what I like best. It takes me right back to middle school. Am I listening to the right music? Do I get it? Do you get me? For years now, I’ve been wanting to share a Solid Fire playlist, but I keep putting it off, for fear of being judged.
Whatev. As I write this, I am beginning my 51st trip around the sun. I’m 50 now and can let go of precontemplated mortification. And practicing vulnerability is good. So, I’m taking a deep breath and just going for it. Below are the tunes I can listen to over and over and over again, many of which inspire me in my facilitation work.
These tunes are listed in no particular order other than being somewhat grouped together energetically. Except for the first two tunes. Yummmmmm…. I will never, ever get enough of the first two tunes. I probably drive everyone around me nuts with how much I listen to them.
Some caveats: You may be relieved to know that I did decide to limit myself to one tune per artist/group for the sake of relative brevity. I claim no attempt at a broad inclusion regarding musical genres, eras, or cultures. I seem to have a strong predilection for 70s funk, disco, rock, and singer-songwriters, although I can’t claim to have been exposed to these during the actual 70s of my childhood, when NPR radio dominated the aural environment of our home. Well, we did sing Cats Stevens at summer camp. I am also noticing that the preponderance of artists I list are men, and I’m going to turn my ear more to women and non-binary artists in the coming year. I’ve had an aspiration to do so since I learned about NPR’s list of 150 greatest albums made by women.
I hope you enjoy the Solid Fire Winter Playlist. And write me back with your favorites. Please! I’m musically challenged and always benefit from external input.
this Winter and into the New Year