Dear friends at The Voice
We are starting our 2013 campaign for The David Archuleta Music Scholarship and would greatly appreciate if you would post this on Monday, March 11. There is a video at the end to embed as well.
Archive for the ‘Art’ Category
Posted by Angelica on Monday, March 11, 2013
Posted by MT on Saturday, February 16, 2013
We all know that David Archuleta is “The Voice.” That’s why we all became so enamored of this wonderful artist from the beginning. David is one of those rare individuals whose voice can reach out and touch your soul through song. I’m not sure why it happens or how he’s able to accomplish such a task. I just know it happens, at least for me.
From his early days on Star Search to the present, there has never been any doubt about his abilities. We’ve all read one article after another about his technique and his natural ability to make a song his own. It doesn’t matter whether it’s an original of his own creation, one that was written for him and sung by him, or a cover of another artist’s song. Once David sings it no other will ever compare, at least not for us. It’s a never-ending riddle for me as to why that is.
Why does no other artist give a song the power that David seems to imbue within its lyrics and melody? I’ve often tried to describe where I feel it comes from and to this day have not found the right words. I’ve said that he has “an echo chamber in his chest.” How else could he give such fullness to his voice? I’ve said that “he has music in his DNA” and it just oozes from every pore. I’ve thought perhaps it’s because of the shape or size of his mouth that he’s able to pronounce and sing words so beautifully. Or perhaps it’s a result of the vocal paralysis and resultant recovery that his tone has such richness. But none of these explain why his voice reaches me, touches me, in the way that it does.
There’s something far more than technique, no matter how perfect, that makes David’s voice so special. In the video below, Climb Every Mountain from Salt Lake City on the MKOC Tour, David gives a performance that, when I am able to make my self pay attention to that aspect of the song, appears to be technically perfect. But what makes this performance so special is something more than that.
While I’m quite sure he has practiced this song to make it as powerful as he can while performing it, there is no evidence that it is “rehearsed” during the performance. There is no spot that I feel is contrived to add power, no place that feels forced. It feels like it’s just being written as he’s singing it. It feels like his own words and his own feelings being released from his mind and heart at the very moment the lyrics are sung.
I have, years ago, dabbled in song writing. As you’ve all seen, I love writing poetry. Rhyme comes naturally to my mind somehow. I once wrote a poem that created its own melody in my head as I wrote and then read it. The result? A song. It took only minutes but was something so personal and powerful to me that when I sang it out loud only moments after writing it, it made me cry.
I tell you this because that’s how I feel when David sings a song like “Climb Every Mountain.” It feels like the song wasn’t written until that very moment and is something very personal and powerful to him. It feels like it’s being created from the very depths of his being and sung for the very first time, in the “here and now,” from the very first note until the last. Perhaps that’s the key.
David was gifted with the amazing ability to perform a song day after day, show after show, as if it’s the very first time, as if it’s an original written straight from his heart in that moment, as if he is speaking his thoughts through song. Once he begins, the technique, which is probably as close to perfect as one can get, is no longer noticed. It’s all about feelings. And what I feel as he begins to sing is his heart pouring out onto his audience on a beautiful wave of sound and genuine emotion.
He has the rare ability to connect very personally and powerfully to the music and lyrics of a song. The second part of that very rare gift is the ability to pass that on to his audience. The result is that, rather than just hearing it, the listener “experiences” the song in the exact same way David feels it. And he knows it. No wonder he’s so very careful what he sings.
It may very well be why his wonderful heart is mentioned so often. It’s the tenderness, the sweetness, the innocence, and the love in his heart that comes through to us in his voice. Each time we listen, we are given one sweet moment of all that is beautiful in this world.
“Climb Every Mountain” is my example. Do you have a song you feel this way about?”
Posted by MT on Wednesday, January 23, 2013
In a recent conversation (yes, it involved David :)) I was asked if I played an instrument or sang. I answered the question in as few words as possible (for me) and then moved on to another topic. But later that night, it really got me thinking about what things we David fans may have in common.
Quite often in chat, topics other than David are discussed. (I know! Unbelievable, but true?) One night, it started with a comment about white boots and ended up with me confessing to singing the song “These Boots Are Made For Walking” by Nancy Sinatra in an elementary school talent contest. Yes, it elicited much laughter but resulted in discovering that several of us had owned those “cool white boots.” (You know who you are!) We were definitely “In With the In Crowd” back in the day. ;)
I confessed to dancing in first and second grade for those talent shows. From third to sixth grade, I sang and danced. (No trophies for singing though. I guess I should have stuck to dancing.)
I loved singing and dancing with all my heart back then. (I still do.) Just like David’s parents, if my mother wanted to keep me amused for a while, all she had to do was put on something that involved music. A movie musical was best. I would sing at the top of my lungs and dance around the living room. My Fair Lady and The Sound Of Music were two of my favorites but I would even sing the songs from The Wizard Of Oz and dance with Dorothy, The Scarecrow, The Tinman, and The Cowardly Lion.
I discovered as I got older that, although I enjoyed singing, I didn’t have a very good voice. But dancing was something I could do and really enjoyed. Once I started, I kept finding new ways to incorporate dance into my life. It didn’t matter what kind of dancing it was; Square Dancing, Cajun dancing, Jitter Bug, Cha Cha, Waltz, Two-Step, Line Dancing, West Coast Swing, East Coast Swing, free style. You name it … I’d try it.
There has always been something in music that reached out to me and brought me joy. Dancing was my way of expressing that joy. There is something in the graceful rhythmic movement that helps to release something inside me that words could never express. Just like singing, the true beauty of expression in dance comes from the soul.
I hadn’t really thought about all the different styles of dance I had tried over the years until was asked that question. It made me realize how much dancing is a part of me, just like singing is a part of David. The thoughts and memories stirred in me by that one question made me understand a little better how David must feel. Maybe understanding/feeling the passion he has for his art is part of what drew me to him in the first place.
Although I could never hope to dance nearly as beautiful as David sings, I can understand having such a deep love of something that lets you express yourself in a way that nothing else can. He’s very fortunate that he is extremely good at what he loves. What greater joy could there be than making your living, spending you life, doing something you have such passion for?
One last thought: We seem to be discovering more and more often that we have many things in common. I wonder if there is a common thread among fans that draws them to David, a reason why some people “get it” and some don’t? Musical backgrounds maybe? Or perhaps it’s even more broad than that. After all, a passion for creativity and expression come in many forms.
So, if you don’t mind, I’d like to do a little poll to see if it’s possibly a shared passion for expression that might help us to understand and connect to David and each other in a way that others may not. I’d also love for you to expand on your answer in comments and let us know what it is . If you don’t want to comment that’s okay. But I do hope you’ll mark an answer in the poll.
Posted by bluesky4home on Sunday, December 30, 2012
When I see something wonderful that talented people are doing, I always get excited and I wonder, “How is this going to fit into what DA will need, or be doing, or have available, etc. when he comes home?”
Why? Because: I believe.
I believe that things that bless others will also bless him. I believe that because there are so many changes happening within the music industry and how “brands” are created, produced and marketed, that a new paradigm is emerging that will bless his life as well as the lives of others. I believe DA is young, savvy, focused and inspired. I do not say that it will all be roses, smooth sailing, or that everything will magically fall into place, but I do believe absolutely that new horizons of opportunity will be available to him. And when he is blessed, so are we.
My case in point for today: ThePianoGuys.
I had been hearing about Jon Schmidt, a creative composer/pianist, for a long time and have gone to two of his concerts. He is well known in our area and offers concerts each year. When I first saw him on You Tube, I saw this title above the vid: ThePianoGuys. I thought that was a little strange, since he was the only person in the videos. Later, I saw several vids where he was performing duets with Steven Sharp Nelson, a wonderful cellist. I loved the music but was still a bit confused by the title. Being that I am a bit slow, it was not until this last summer when I attended a concert close to home that I caught the full vision of what they, ThePianoGuys were all about.
From their Official Channel:
Five guys from different walks of life with different skill sets, from different places — each had built their own careers: a piano store owner/videographer (Paul Anderson), a music producer (Al van der Beek), a videographer/editor (Tel Stewart), a pianist (Jon Schmidt), and a cellist (Steven Sharp Nelson). But all with the same ambition: to inspire the world with the talents given them. Each met through seemingly-happenstance, but divinely-influenced circumstances. Combined, they had the tools, the passion, and the drive necessary to independently build one of the most successful music video production companies in the world. They are famous for taking their instruments (especially grand pianos) and video equipment to unbelievable places. But above all, ThePianoGuys love what they do — and it shows. At the end of the day, they are ordinary guys that love their families and that thank God for the opportunity they have to do what they love.
It was then that I finally realized that ThePianoGuys was a collaborative effort: when you go to their website, the three that seldom appear as performers on video are given top billing and space. All are equal to the importance of the creation of their “brand”. What is most exciting to me is that their very successful brand was chosen, produced and offered to the public on their own terms, not those of someone else. No record company told them what they could or could not be. No marketing body handed them a pre-fabricated identity, relegating them by color, size, or sound to fit neatly into one of the few molded shapes allowed in a modern music cafeteria tray. They became famous through YouTube, posting their first video in March of 2010. Two years and 39 videos later, many produced a week apart, they now have a total of 205,419,123 views and 1,178,305 subscribers to their channel.
In December 2011, they released their first album and their second album, released in 2012 reached number one on the Billboard New Age Albums chart.
So… without further ado, here is an example of what can be accomplished when people follow their passion and remain true to themselves.
One of my favs, sure to make you smile:
One of my passions, sure to inspire:
One of their newest, sure to make you believe in dreams:
The other day I caught this comment on YouTube under one of their videos:
“wow that was awesome ps you guys should make a David Archuleta song”
Now, from time to time they do record their arrangements/videos with a singer. And I have a pretty good idea who I think would sound best. You might want to save some time on your calendar for a certain returned missionary in 2014 Piano Guys. Can you say “Broken”?
Post script: “The Piano Guys” last concert in SLC was produced and recorded for PBS and they just recently got signed by a label: Sony Masterworks. On first hearing this I worried. But then I saw the company they were in…
Placido Domingo, Jascha Heifetz, Vittorio Grigolo, Wynton Marsallis, Yo-Yo Ma, etc. …and I guess I am willing to believe that it is a “good place”.
Conclusion: Talented people are leading fulfilling lives sharing their passion and abilities on their own terms. Can David Archuleta be successful doing this? Things beyond our knowing are aligning for him and others like him.
Without question: Yes. I believe.
The following is a synopsis from PR Newswire introducing all Five Guys in a rare performance together on video:
Ironically, The Piano Guys, who got their name from a piano store in St. George, Utah, are a quintet featuring only two musicians – only one being a pianist. Store owner Paul Anderson devised a Facebook promotional page and a YouTube channel featuring well-established, self-described “New Age Classical” pianist Jon Schmidt , who teamed up musically with Steven Sharp Nelson , an innovative cellist. Together, Schmidt and Nelson form the musical core of The Piano Guys, with Anderson – who has since closed the store – joining forces with genius co-videographer Tel Stewart in creating The Piano Guys’ videos. Al van der Beek , the fifth “Guy,” heads up the group’s studio operations, and also assists in co-writing and arranging, as well as percussion and vocal texturing. As seen in their One Direction video, in performance, all five of The Piano Guys frequently appear together.
Posted by Angelica on Thursday, September 6, 2012
At the risk of looking a dead gift horse in the mouth while simultaneously beating him, here is my eleventh hour review of the “Everybody Hurts” video.
I did not comment on the video when it was released. I watched it once with sound, once without sound, and then logged off my computer. Days later I returned to see many praising it, but not all. Among the dissenters was HG’s honest review and Silverfox’s on this site. I gathered from other comments that there was some controversy brewing over the matter but I didn’t go there. I make it a rule to stay away from drama that is not of my own making, for if I create it, I can hardly avoid it. For that reason, I try not to create it. But feigned indifference, my stance of choice on all but the most pressing issues, will not do. I don’t know why it won’t do but it just won’t. I don’t know why the video affected me so strongly but it did. Maybe by writing down my thoughts it will become clearer, at least to me.
I know they were pressed for time. I suspect David probably had very little to do with the making of the video other than laying down the vocals and allowing himself to be filmed doing so. He probably then left, trusting that others would do it justice and, with more important things on his mind, not much caring how it turned out. The music was the thing that mattered, a parting gift for his fans and he worked so hard and put so much love into it.
What does one video matter? It matters because to a fan of David, nothing will ever be good enough for him unless it reaches his level of excellence. In the song, “Everybody Hurts,” he descended emotionally far below anything portrayed on that video. Lyrically the song echoes the words of Henry David Thoreau, “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.” Where in the video was this truth made plain by the lines, “when you feel like giving up…when you feel like letting go…don’t throw your hand!”? Not in a father giving his daughter away in marriage with much joy in store, or childhood friends parting but still keeping in touch by phone and text. And surely the mother in combat was not about to throw her hand or let go of life, so long as she could make it back to her child.
In an afterthought while writing this, I wondered how a video like MJ’s “Stranger in Moscow” would work with David’s cover of “Everybody Hurts.” It was edited hastily and in places is choppy. Since he was singing another song, I removed the frames containing Michael which necessitated some repetition of images and I added something of David. It is only meant to be a rough draft to illustrate the difference between sentimentality and seriously good work. Good enough even, for David.
Posted by Angelica on Saturday, September 1, 2012
Below is an excerpt from an article in the September edition of The New Yorker, by Lizzie Widdicombe entitled, “Teen Titan – The Man Who Made Justin Bieber.” Click on the above link for a fascinating read, the story of how a star was born and the Machiavellian machinations that delivered him into a world of fame, power, and wealth. Well written and informative, it is an education in how things work in the very competitive music industry where marketing is all and art is superfluous. At one point she quotes Universal Music Group CEO, Lucian Grainge, who recently signed a distribution deal with Braun… “We’re not in the art business.”
One afternoon, I sat in on a meeting Braun had in his living room with a potential client, a nineteen-year-old singer named Tori Kelly, and her parents. At eleven, Kelly had appeared on the TV series “America’s Most Talented Kid,” and she’d had a deal with the Geffen label. But her career had stalled.
Braun leaned back on the couch, his hands crossed behind his head. “So what do you guys want to do?” he asked in an antsy tone. “I think you’re a real artist with a real voice. I want to understand what you want so I can help you out.”
Kelly’s mom, wearing pink Capri pants, explained that Kelly had just self-released an album, which was charting on iTunes. Kelly named a few pop acts that she’d like to open for: Beyoncé, Alicia Keyes, Justin Timberlake. “Justin”-meaning Bieber-”would be great.” She said that she’d like to perform with a band and with choreography, “if it fits.”
Braun interrupted: “You’ve been doing this for a while now. What do you think the holdup has been?”
Kelly said, in a small voice, “I think the people we have worked with, they don’t see the full picture. They don’t know what to do with me.”
After a minute, Kelly picked up one of Braun’s guitars and performed a song-the chorus went, “Lavish me with your love.” It sounded a bit like acoustic Lauryn Hill. Braun listened attentively. It was nothing like the R. & B. and dance-oriented pop on his roster.
When Kelly finished, Braun asked, “Are you a fan of Jewel?”
She said, politely, “I’m not super-familiar . . .”
Braun jumped in. “Let me give you the background,” he said. “Jewel tried to get signed, it didn’t work out. She drove to California, and she lived in her car. She was homeless, she played coffee shops. She wrote really amazing songs. Then she sold millions of records.” He explained that in the late nineties, during the height of Jewel’s fame, the charts were dominated by elaborate pop acts like the Backstreet Boys and ‘NSync. “But the biggest female star on the planet was someone who came in with a guitar, real quiet, and people would sit there and just be blown away by these singer-songwriter songs.” He went on, “That is the lane for you. There is a time for that again.”
Kelly was wary. Her father said, “So, like, a Jewel-meets-Fiona Apple-meets-Beyoncé?”
Braun said, “Jewel-meets-Tori Kelly. The Beyoncé thing comes later.” He said that the strategy was a marketing approach, not a musical one. “People compartmentalize things. Kobe needs to be like Jordan. Justin Bieber needs to be like Justin Timberlake. You want to dictate to the public who you want them to compare you to. If I was to market you, I’d want them to call you the next Jewel. Because if another Jewel came out, in today’s music market, people would go crazy. That’s what they’re missing.”
Kelly asked, meekly, “How about just the next Tori Kelly?” ?
One of the things that has always impeded the public’s acceptance of David Archuleta is his refusal to be compartmentalized, to be placed inside a convenient box. He is the whole package who refuses to be packaged. People want the familiar, the no-brainer, the known entity. During AI, he made the media uncomfortable, which was a microcosm of the disconnect felt by many viewers. Who is this guy? To whom can we liken him, thereby giving ourselves permission to like him? I don’t blame Scooter Braun for knowing the public so completely and doing his job so well. The blame lies squarely at the feet of a complacent public’s refusal to admit that, like many of the scantily clad empresses on stage, most of the emperors that strut before them are also wearing no clothes.
Posted by Angelica on Monday, July 9, 2012
“I believe that the only excuse we have for being musicians and for making music in any fashion, is to make it differently, to perform it differently, to establish the music’s difference, vis-a-vis our own difference.”
Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould (2009) Directors:Michèle Hozer, Peter Raymont
I recently watched a documentary on the life and work of Glenn Gould, 1932-1982 and naturally, I thought of David. I could be watching a documentary on the etymology of tsetse flies in Tswana and naturally think of David too, but that is beside the point. The similarities between David and Gould were hard to ignore: both musical prodigies and both possessing a combination of good looks and extremely winning personalities.
According to Wikipedia, “At the age of 10, he began attending The Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto.. Gould passed his final Conservatory examination in piano at the age of 12 (achieving the “highest marks of any candidate”), thus attaining “professional standing as a pianist” at that age. One year later he passed the written theory exams, qualifying for an ATCM diploma.”
In his twenties, Gould came to New York and set the world of classical music on fire. All classical musicians spend a good deal of their time “covering” others, and most take pride in being faithful to the original composer. Not Gould, as the above quote by him reveals. No one had ever heard Bach played with such absolute freedom and disregard for convention. He became something of a superstar, an iconic exciting figure, packing concert halls in North America and Russia way beyond the fire code limit. He wrote and arranged a number of original works as well and won a Juno Award for Best Classical Album of the Year in 1979, 1983 and 1984. He won four Grammies, three posthumously before his untimely death at age 50.
Philosopher Mark Kingwell writes that “his influence is made inescapable. No performer after him can avoid the example he sets… Now, everyone must perform through him: he can be emulated or rejected, but he cannot be ignored.”
This brings me to the subject of David doing covers. He recently recorded Forevermore, an album of original Philippines music, fittingly named by how often I play it. I mean the thing never gets old. From comments on YouTube and elsewhere, he seems to have stayed pretty faithful to the originals. If the snippets off his upcoming album Begin., recorded in the US before leaving for his mission are any indication, these covers will be more uniquely his own. They were all specially and lovingly chosen by him to convey his feelings at this unique time in his life.
Whether a classical musician, a seasoned performer or a young man on a mission with not a lot of time but an awful lot to say, doing covers carries the same challenge. Glenn Gould’s words bear repeating…”I believe that the only excuse we have for being musicians and for making music in any fashion, is to make it differently, to perform it differently, to establish the music’s difference, vis-a-vis our own difference.”
Two years ago, Peter Gabriel, who David covers on Begin. with “Don’t Give Up” did an entire album of covers. Of it Jon Pareles of the New York Times had this to say.
“For many singer-songwriters there comes a time to make an album of other people’s songs. That’s what Peter Gabriel does with “Scratch My Back” (Virgin)…A covers album can be a tribute or a miscellany, a throwaway or a statement about what a songwriter holds dear. The production can imitate the original arrangements; the way Seal and Rod Stewart did on their recent soul collections, or apply a distinctly personal approach, as Rosanne Cash did on “The List.” Meanwhile, in recording company offices, hopes arise that a familiar voice and a familiar song can add up to radio play…
When he eventually decided to make a full album of covers, Mr. Gabriel ruled out drums and guitars. He went on to renounce the funk, soul and world-music elements that have filled his past albums. He was determined to strip the songs down to the bare melody and lyric.”
On the following audio tracks, listen to the song in its original recording by Paul Simon. Then listen to Peter Gabriel’s cover. This is not about who has the better voice or which one you like best or which has a good beat and would be easy to dance to. It’s not even a competition. Both artists are geniuses in their own right. This is about what was brought to the original, and whether what was brought made you hear the song and its words differently. Did the one who did the cover of the original bring something new to the song emotionally, and did he make you understand it in a way you didn’t before?
Paul Simon The Boy in the Bubble
Peter Gabriel The Boy in the Bubble
I have such a good feeling about Begin. I think this just may be the start of something good getting even better.
Posted by SandyBeaches on Thursday, July 5, 2012
Oh the tranquility of silence, how wonderful and generous a time that allows us to think, to discover and rediscover what we have deep within our minds and hearts. I awoke from a dream one night with one of David’s songs from his new album going on and on in my head. I had to reach for it and listen to it. So in this night it felt as if he was patiently waiting there for it to be discovered, with a peaceful smile on his face and the question, “What took you so long?” I felt elated because the words in the song give us the story that speaks to us about David and his journey. We are familiar with much of life being symbolic to David like the mere mention to us in a tweet of the formation of beautiful clouds in the blue sky one day. Watching him talk to a squirrel in a park is his way of giving us a gentle nudge to slow down and look at what is real and natural. He was reminding us then to notice the simple things. What took us so long? Only the greats can reach out to people and touch them through their art and in his near silence, he is fast becoming one of the greats.
Without hesitation I hear David’s own thoughts throughout the song. He is strongly passionate about everything in nature that is part of the land and he takes himself away to it whenever he can. I remember the day when he drove off into the mountains and sent the following picture back to us. The words of the song go wonderfully well with his picture. David doesn’t speak to one person but to everyone and it would not be odd for him to ask us if this might be a place where we would love to go.
I walked across an empty land
I knew the pathway like the back of my hand
I felt the earth beneath my feet
I came across a fallen tree
I felt the branches of it looking at me
Is this the place we used to love?
Is this the place that I’ve been dreaming of?
Oh simple thing where have you gone?
I’m getting old and I need something to rely on
So tell me when you’re gonna let me in
I’m getting tired and I need somewhere to begin.
Although this is not a Beatles song, I hear Paul McCartney which makes it so amazing to now hear it in David’s voice. He complements the words, the music and the English flare and I find that extraordinarily exciting. The lyrics seem to reflect upon David’s own beliefs. So now as the words of the song so obviously portray, perhaps where he has gone has become where he has longed to begin. It is possible that this is somewhere and something that he can rely on to be with him and guide him for the rest of his life. We require some environmental serenity in order to achieve spiritual sensitivity.
Posted by paulafod on Saturday, June 2, 2012
Camp ASCCA, Alabama’s Special Camp for Children and Adults, became a part of my life after accepting a job there as Camp Secretary. I knew the moment that I arrived on my first day at work that Camp ASCCA would give me more than simply an income. Every day was a testimony of the human spirit, of overcoming obstacles, and the joy of being who you are. I saw firsthand what camp means to the campers and their families. When a family move took me away from the area, I took Camp ASCCA with me in my heart.
The Singer and the Song Project was born from a simple hope to bring together two groups of people who I love and who I knew would love each other: my Archie family and the campers and staff of Camp ASCCA. It is just an idea…and the person who has the idea is not the person important to the success of a project. The people who are vital to its success are the ones who are willing to take the idea and give of themselves to make it happen.
Thank you so much for having giving hearts. ♥ Please know that every donation, no matter how big or how small, has an impact on the lives of these campers. The music has started. What you are about to see and hear…will be beautiful.
♦ Video by Paula ♦
All of the donations go through Camp ASCCA’s website to their PayPal account and go directly to camp, therefore, donations are tax deductible. All of the steps listed below are the normal steps to make any contribution through the camp’s website. The only addition is tagging the donation, but a lot of people tag donations anyway if making a donation in memory of someone or in honor of someone. It’s really fairly simple to see what to do once you’re on the website. Donors will receive an email confirmation/receipt of their donation.
I also have an email address for any questions regarding the project:
The camp link is http://www.campascca.org/
The recipient of the painting will be chosen at random from the donations tagged “In honor of the singer” and will get one chance to win for every $5 donated. The painting is a 16 x 20 oil on canvas.
The instructions are also in the YouTube info for the video too, so I’m hoping that helps.
Go to: campascca.org
Click: Support Camp
Enter your donation amount
Click: Update Total
Log into PayPal
Click: Add Special Instructions to the Seller
Enter: “In honor of the singer” for a chance to win the painting or “In honor of the song” to make a donation to support the project.
You’re done!!! Thank you!
Donations may also be mailed to:
PO Box 21
Jackson’s Gap, AL 36861
All donations must be received before 6-22 to be included in this project and be eligible for the drawing to win the painting.
Posted by bluesky4home on Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Hands hold many messages. They are symbolic of personal power, capability, action, autonomy, self-expression, appeal, intelligence, language and more. DA’s hands are always part of his musical messages. However, when he is not singing, he can tend to down-play them; tuck, and fold them away with his thoughts behind those magnificent eyes.
In this photo, it seems to me that Matt Clayton has deliberately down played most of the rest of DA: his legs, torso, arms, shoulders and head are all in positions of rest or pulling back. His hands however, are bared, sleeves rolled back in preparation for action, every digit brought to full relief with light and shadow as though sculpted. The hands seem aware, fully present, caught in that moment before movement. What happens next as their purpose becomes realized, the eyes open, the head rises and body unfolds, will be a revelation.
Matt Clayton seems to me to tell stories with his work. It would be fun to know what he is thinking. There are so many ways to go with the Matt Clayton photo, e. g., pulling back before you move forward, as a metaphor for the mission, as a metaphor for our own lives, looking inward from where the “newness” actually comes from.
I looked up some of Matt Clayton’s more recent work and he shows such respect for the human body: that is, he picks settings and textures and backgrounds that show a reverence for not only the people involved and their “topic” but for human beings in general. I am not used to this.
And the pic of him sitting by DA is so fun. He has the whole design of the picture: light and dark, shadows and objects, all pointing to DA. while he sits on a lower box in the shadow. It is as though, even while he is ostensibly in the photo, he is still the observer. Only this time he is observing us observing him. That is__he is looking at us looking at DA. HIS DA. I find that so funny. I think he has a great sense of humor under it all. So I guess what I am saying is, that he not only shows respect for his subject but for his audience as well. He takes his art seriously, but not himself. Remind you of anyone?
“In Art, man reveals himself and not his objects.”