Though I’m open to the experience, I’ve yet to win a traditional Grammy Award.
My Grammies emerge from the stories people tell about how they use my music in their everyday lives and work. I’m deeply touched when something I’ve created can be put to good use in the world. Here are a few examples:
- Kairos Dance Theatre uses my song “Great Big Love” to open each of their Dancing Heart programs. This innovative work offers people with memory loss and physical challenges the opportunity to dance, tell stories, and connect with each other.
- A psychologist who teaches mindfulness opens the first session with “Brain Rats” as a way to introduce brain chatter to her students in a light-hearted way.
- Dozens of people send my “Better Birthday Song” to their friends as a birthday greeting in lieu of that dreadful song we usually sing on that day. (It’s available as a free download at http://www.barbaramcafee.com)
- A friend sings “Kite At Sundown” – the first song I ever wrote – as a final farewell at the graveside of her beloved mother-in-law.
- A fellow author thinks of the song “Such As These” whenever she encounters people doing the humble work of the world. She says remembering its message supports her in offering them the gratitude and respect they deserve.
When a song gets used like this, it’s a bit like Pinocchio. It becomes real.
It’s true, Barbara, your “children” have gone off, left the nest, and gone on to meet many other people, some of whom you’ll never know about. And your poems, too – I’ll never forget how you spoke “On Being a Carrot in God’s Garden” at Joel’s memorial service.
Yes, that poem has wandered far and wide in the world as well. And I always think of Joel when I recite it now — and wish I had a big carrot to bite! Did you know I used it as the closing poem in the book?