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Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs

katlaughing 17 May 09 - 04:51 PM
frogprince 17 May 09 - 09:31 PM
katlaughing 18 May 09 - 12:18 AM
katlaughing 18 May 09 - 10:49 AM
wysiwyg 18 May 09 - 11:41 AM
katlaughing 18 May 09 - 03:45 PM
wysiwyg 18 May 09 - 03:57 PM
wysiwyg 19 May 09 - 08:52 AM
wysiwyg 19 May 09 - 09:23 AM
wysiwyg 19 May 09 - 02:12 PM
GUEST,rene marie 19 May 09 - 05:00 PM
wysiwyg 19 May 09 - 07:17 PM
katlaughing 19 May 09 - 07:23 PM
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Subject: Rene Marie-her take on USpatriotic songs
From: katlaughing
Date: 17 May 09 - 04:51 PM

I heard Rene Marie interviewed on Colorado Public Radio, today. The interview is available online HERE and well worth the listen, imo, IF only to hear HER sing DIXIE. WOW!!! Perhaps some of you may have heard her renditions of what we think of as US patriotic songs, with her own take on the tunes and also, importantly, imo, her version of Star Spangled Banner.

You may hear some of her songs here, some are available free for download: CLICK for her Music.

Here is her bio from her website:

I was born into a family of 9 in a very small town in Virginia. Music played a pivotal role in my life from the very beginning. It was at home that I learned the value of telling the story behind the music and how powerfully that story can move the listener and impact one's life. I learned how vital it is to convey emotion in the music by watching my father's facial expressions and body language when he listened to music.

I had one year of formal piano lessons when I was nine years old and another year when I was 13. It was during those lessons that I learned to read music. The rest of my musical ability seemed to come to me naturally. For a brief time, as a teenager, I sang in a band at musical functions in my neighborhood. In this band was a pianist, a sixteen-year-old boy who would later become my husband. I composed and sang my first piece in the band when I was 15.

At the age of 18 my boyfriend and I joined a very strict religious group, got married and stopped performing in public - for good, it seemed. Four years later, I was a mother of two sons and found myself inculcating in them a love for music the same way my father had with me – by example. Many times we would sit together listening to music and I would ask them how did a certain song make them feel: Happy? Sad? Excited? Calm? Then I would ask them to stand up and show me what that would look like. Such were the 'games' we would play. Many mornings I awakened them with Aaron Copland's "Fanfare for the Common Man". Other times, we would 'dance' the story of Maurice Ravel's "Bolero". At night, I would compose lullabies for them, making up verses until they fell asleep.

I continued to play piano, compose, sing at home and eventually started giving piano lessons. Though my husband and I no longer performed in public, we were a very musical family, having friends over for food and conversation, but where music would be the centerpiece. My husband eventually learned to play five different instruments: trumpet, guitar, saxophone, flute, piano. Both sons sang and played several instruments between them. Occasionally, we would play together as a family.

In January 1996 I was 41 and working full-time at a bank when my oldest son convinced me to start singing again. After a big family discussion, it was decided that I should call a family friend and ask to sing with his quintet. He readily agreed and I started out singing one day a week in a smoky bar of a Ramada Inn for tips only. It would be several months before I actually earned any money. However, by January 1997, my husband was displeased with the amount of time I was spending with music and told me to stop singing. I had promised him when I first started that if he ever wanted me to stop, I would. So, I did. I stopped singing for 3 months and they were a miserable 3 months. After months without singing in public, I begged, wheedled and cajoled my husband into "allowing" me to sing again. I promised him I would do whatever it took to "please" him, as long as I could sing. He capitulated and I resumed singing with a ferocity I didn't know I had. So much so that, on the last day of 1997, when this time he issued the ultimatum that I either stop singing or he would force me to leave our home, rather than stop singing, I chose to leave after 23 years of marriage. 18 months later, I had divorced my husband, produced my first CD, quit my job at the bank and signed onto the MaxJazz label.

Between 2000 and 2004, I recorded four CDs on the MaxJazz label and have won several awards, both domestic and international, for those recordings. In 2005, I decided not to re-sign with MaxJazz, but to make my own way, call my own shots. In 2006, I decided not to re-sign with my booking agent, but to slow things down and work on a one-woman show.

In 2007, I released "Experiment In Truth".

I have never forgotten the early lessons learned about the power of music. Today, I try to imbue that feeling of emotion into every song I write – every song I sing – every time. I am very happy to be singing today.

rene marie


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: frogprince
Date: 17 May 09 - 09:31 PM

Thanks, Kat; I really enjoyed this. Some of what she has done is actually about as extreme as what Norrington did with Dylan. But she does it with genuine, even exceptional, sensitivity to what the lyrics are about, and that makes all the difference.
                            Dean


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 May 09 - 12:18 AM

I agree, Dean. she is very sensitive and classy, as well as genuine. I am glad you enjoyed it, thanks!


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 May 09 - 10:49 AM

refresh - this is worth a listen, folks, imo


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: wysiwyg
Date: 18 May 09 - 11:41 AM

I can't get the interview to play; I could use a copy for a Commission on which I serve in our area; if anyone has a way of doing it please PM.

~S~


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 May 09 - 03:45 PM

Try it from HERE. (Scroll down.)


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: wysiwyg
Date: 18 May 09 - 03:57 PM

Got it, thanks.

~S~


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 May 09 - 08:52 AM

I had read Rene Marie's website comments about the SSB but not until I heard the interview could I put it all in context. I see a woman so passionate about her singing that it really did not make sense to her how people got so upset over what she offered for the SSB.... the innocence of a true believer focused only on the believed.

A more cynical approach would have been to assume that the version she had sung at another event-- well-received-- was the version that caused her to be invited to the next event. That would have put her response to the upsets into a context easier for folks to understand-- of course she would not have needed to ask an OK for an alt version-- "isn't that why you invited me?!?!?"

Now that she's done it I hope it WILL be why she is invited, next time around. NOW it's what she is known for.

I especially loved, in the interview, the conversation around "Dixie" and what she related of the chat with her son about it. This is a thinking woman, bound to wring good out of evil.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 May 09 - 09:23 AM

I dropped the lady a note. I hope she will pop in, and maybe even find an interest in some of our other discussions. We've wrestled with a few of the same issues she addresses so elegantly with her art.

~Susan


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Subject: Abrazos: Multicultural Competence
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 May 09 - 02:12 PM

Here's a pale reflection of the rich ramble my mind's been on this last half-hour or so.

I was watching the Marty Stuart Show. Mighta been the first episode; an early one at any rate, and I'd missed it. Featured guest: Earl Scruggs. The icon and the old, old man.

And I got to thinking about a ride I took one day with our then-new Bishop; I'd taken along a car-CD our band was using to learn from some source-songs. It was the usual, wacky, eclectic mix our band plays, in gospel sub-genres that have mixed and flowed apart and back together through many concert halls, radio programs, and jam sessions. All vintage.

And, not surprisingly, my new African-American bishop of wide cosmopolitan experience responded viscerally to the old "negro spirituals" and to the Iris Dement adaptation of a song she'd learned at her mother's knee, sung purdy hill-like, Appalachianish.

We started a friendship that day, my Bishop and I, in the commonality of what we both perceived as truth... expressed through many cultures. And yes, we did sing along as we hurtled though the mountains and valleys that cannot be avoided here, going anywhere at all. It was a great hour.

Well, I was savoring that ("anamnesis") and remembering some of Stuart's other musically-multicultural leanings, and seeing old Scruggs be Scruggs, and the show wandered on through a heckuva musical journey.... and my mind was not far behind though a tad far afield.

I'd been mulling the Rene' Marie music I'd heard yesterday, earlier this morning.

All that was in my mind-- a grand soup, simmering.


And at the very end of the show Marty turned to Scruggs and cued "the National Anthem," and they rolled right into a jamming, sparkling Foggy Mountain Breakdown-- the national anthem of the nation of which they claim citizenship.

And I thought, we all have a national anthem that speaks to us, cried out to us, uplifts us, challenges us-- and there is no intrinsic conflict bewtween them really. They are just part of the soup.

And they are meant to be shared, and to be celebrated. All of them.


I'm GLAD Rene' Marie stirs her soup. I been known to stir a soup myself, and this particular week that soup is so hot I'm feeling a need for a few ice cubes-- cuz I'm IN it this time. Hopped right in like an ignorant lobster.


But multicultural competence (a recently learned term) requires that we jump in, stir it, serve it up, let it soften us sometimes, let it burn us a little as it cooks. In the end [shrug], IT'S ALL GOOD.


Abrazos,

~Susan


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: GUEST,rene marie
Date: 19 May 09 - 05:00 PM

hey, everybody...
thank you so much, wysiwyg, for sending this to me. so much of this interview on KCFR was edited! but what's left over is a pretty good representation of the conversation, for the most part. that's the risk you take when doing a taped interview...

there's a quote somewhere about how much better it is to understand than to be understood but, being understood in this context is such a relief! i try to remain unattached to whether people have a "positive" or "negative" reaction to my compositions and arrangements. as long as they have SOME kind of reaction, then the music has accomplished its task, imo.

i like this site. will bookmark it for deeper insight...


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 May 09 - 07:17 PM

I know I am not the only one who will look forward to "seeing" you around the 'Cat, RM. I do recommend joining so that you can exchange PMs. I promise, it's spam-free membership.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: Rene Marie- African American- US patriotic songs
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 May 09 - 07:23 PM

Welcome to the Mudcat, Rene Marie! Thanks for stopping by!


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