Coating the trees where I live,I notice the affects of the baked sun at this time of the year,with the soaring temperatures reaching levels not seem since 1976.Although I was 19 then,I honestly don’t remember those times as vividly as the commentators from the media do.Wether I was just “doing other things”,of what,I just don’t know but the drought if that summer seems to have passed me by.As I wrote that last sentence,I distinctly remember practicing the piano,the organ and being completely focused on my music so as not to notice.If that was living in my own world ,then yes,that is what I was doing .
But that was then,and now,like many of my age,I tend to be taken along with the topical media,with weather apps and the like as if trying by being informed to be enlightened.Now,as I get older,I’m a lover of music and the arts,but my real days of artistic pursuit are behind me,as the day to day events of life tend to encroach,as the events of “getting by,sorting things out”,take a more central role.Going back to 1976 ,it’s true to say that life to me then meant :How many songs from the Steveland Morris album,sings in the key of life could I replicate on the piano,that was more important to me than how hot I was finding it.Why,the track “Summer soft”,rings in my ear now as I tap away here on my iPad at just before eight.Really,the opening song from the album:”Loves in need of love today “,affected me profoundly,spoke to me and still does,probably more so than the Beethoven piano sonatas and the Bach preludes that I was playing on the piano at the time.
So,That summer of 1976 was my summer of love,not in the love of a person ,but in the soul of music ,sharing it with those who appreciated it around me too.If people were using no standpipes,as they surely were,I might have used water from a fresh river to drink as I had done since I was a child,but I truly don’t remember the levels being “dangerously” low as many of the Facebook group that I belong to have noted.Perhaps we remember what we chose to remember ,but feelings are attached to something altogether more profound.When I replay some of the tracks of that Stevie album,it’s the feelings that it invokes that really get me,and they console me,sometimes causing me to cry,others to laugh,others to smile.Another track that I tap into to inject a level of joy is “Sir Juke”,it is the story of how musicians make us feel,how we get by.
So,that was my summer of 1976.
Thank you .