Giving Thanks for Life and Music

The last time I wrote, it was during “Autmer,” the in-between Summer and Autumn. Now, we are fully entrenched in the fall season. I’ve been so busy that it was just today that I finally had an opportunity to be present in my experience of the foliage around me. Not to mention, fall fashion is the best fashion of the year and I just got around to paying real attention. Now, I’m looking ahead to the holidays. For those of you who somehow don’t know, I LOVE Christmas and the overall holiday season. But, since I just began enjoying Autumn, I won’t delve into Christmas just yet. I am thankful for it, however. I am also quite grateful for family, friends and loved ones. Grateful for each day that I am given, always hoping and praying not to ever take a day for granted. I am grateful for my upcoming performance, “She Sings of Rivers” on November 10th at the Hudson River Museum as well, where I’ll share my new arrangement of “Shenandoah.”

In the spirit of gratitude, I thought to share with you my Top Ten list of “Musical For Which I Am Grateful,” as follows:

10) All Classic Hymns, especially, “Be Thou My Vision”

9) Mozart “Requiem”

8) Vivaldi “Gloria”

7) New Edition’s, “Can You Stand the Rain?”

6) Beethoven’s quartet from the opera, “Fidelio”

5) Boston’s “More Than a Feeling”

4) Abba’s “Lay All Your Love on Me”

3) Tchaikovsky’s First Movement of the “Serenade for Strings”

2) Stevie Wonder’s “When I Go”

1) “Shout for Joy,” a song cycle I composed back in 2014. Most grateful because God gave me the music to share. It chased me down for years, until I finally wrote-out the music.

I hope that you can enjoy friends and family this season, and a time filled with joy, grateful hearts, and lots of music.

Yolanda Johnson