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The History of “Taps”

An American Prayer CoverDo you know why “Taps” is played at military funerals? (If you don’t know, I didn’t either and saw this on Facebook, found it interesting and decided to share it.)

During the Civil War in 1862, Union Army Captain Robert Elli was with his men in Virginia near Harrison’s Landing. The Confederate Army was just on the other side of a narrow strip of land.

In the night, Captain Elli heard a solider moaning who laid severely wounded in the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier, the Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention. Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the stricken soldier and began pulling him toward his camp.

When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead. The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb with shock. In the dim light, he saw the soldier’s face; it was his own son. (The son had been studying music in the South when the war broke out. Without telling his father, the boy had enlisted in the Confederate Army.)

Even though the son was of enemy status, the next morning, the heartbroken father asked his superiors’ permission to give his son a full military burial, including a group of Army band members to play a funeral dirge. The request was rejected since the soldier was a Confederate. But, out of respect for the father, they agreed to give him only one musician – a buglar. The father asked the buglar to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper in his dead son’s uniform pocket. This wish was granted.

The haunting melody of “Taps” was born. The words from the son’s pocket:

Verse 1 – Day is done. Gone the sun. From the lakes. From the hills. From the sky. All is well. Safely rest. God is nigh.

Verse 2 – Fading light. Dims the sight. And a star. Gems the sky. Gleaming bright. From afar. Drawing nigh. Falls the night.

Verse 3 – Thanks and praise. For our days. Neath the sun. Neath the stars. Neath the sky. As we go. This we know. God is nigh.

This song is the finale on the “An American Prayer” album. While it is not played with a bugle, the harp version is really unique! If this song touches something deep within you, you can download this beautiful, haunting song.


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Music Streaming

Music streamingI recently saw a Facebook post with a photo of “payments” from Spotify. I put quotes around “payments” because the picture was line item after line item of Spotify entries that were either .00 or .01 … yes, that’s NO payment or a penny per entry!! And the comments below this post were unanimous with numerous musicians – “I have the same problem”!!

Wonder why Spotify is involved in two LARGE lawsuits with both famous and independent musicians?!! Doesn’t take a rocket scientist (or a rockstar musician!!) to figure this out, right?!!

So, what can you do to help? Support your favorite musicians by buying their CDs or downloads, and plan to listen for years of enjoyment. I, along with thousands of other musicians, will be very grateful! Thanking you in advance …


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When Violence Strikes – Got Music? (Part I)

Stop ViolenceEvery time a violent act occurs, I’m shocked, saddened, questioning why, grief-stricken. I am no different than anyone else.

Now, we have social media tools, such as Facebook and Twitter, to process our emotions “out loud,” and reach out to comfort and soothe each other. After these brutal events, I scroll through my Facebook stream and I notice many posts of music. We turn to music during these painful, challenging times.

Musicians have a powerful voice. As Arthur Schopenhauer says, “Music is the answer to the mystery of life … it expresses the deepest thoughts of life and being; a simple language which nonetheless cannot be translated.” And Hazbat Inayat Khan said, “There is nothing better than music as a means for upliftment of the soul.” Perhaps this is why we turn to music and the much-needed message from musicians’ during these times of inexplicable violence. It was Charles Munch who said, “Music is an art that expresses the inexpressible.”

Sing on … play on … shine on musicians … thanking each of you with deep gratitude.


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Fear Defined…

FearIn our last blog entry, we compared freedom and fear. We recently saw on Facebook this description of fear and thought it was worthy to include one more post about this topic. Fear is either Forget Everything and Run or Face Everything and Rise. The choice is yours!

What do you pick? It seems there’s a lot of movement at the grassroots level these days and this leads us to think that many people are selecting the latter. We vote YES!!


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AdeleThe Grammy’s were awhile back (!), but on this blog, it is worth mentioning, or rather asking, did you see Adele on the Grammy’s? She opened the show with a powerful rendition of her famous song, “Hello.” I loved every minute and my Facebook stream was abuzz at how beautiful it was – both her singing and she looked stunning! (Isn’t it refreshing that she’s so “normal” and just sings her heart out?!!)

Then, later in the show, they introduced her to do the George Michael tribute. She started and then, all of the sudden, she stopped, swore and said, “I can’t mess this up for him.”

Oh my … I’ve seen this on American Idol but not on something that is as professional as the Grammy’s. I sat, transfixed on how she would handle herself. She looked mortified as she made her way through the second try … she sounded amazing! After she finished, she stood on the stage stunned and the audience was SO SUPPORTIVE. It was beautiful to watch … Adele is human; we are all human. Wow, what a moment!

And it reminded me what they told us in music school (college level). Musicians can be the most critical audience and they can also be the most forgiving. I witnessed this on February 12 at the 2017 Grammy Awards.


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“Saint” Teresa

Saint TeresaThis past weekend, Mother Teresa was honored and named a Saint in Rome. I have an acquaintance who was there and posted photos/videos on Facebook.

I have always admired Mother Teresa’s work and have also realized she was a queen of working with intentions. She always had the interest of those less fortunate and maneuvered others so that those impoverished could get better care (whether it was food, housing medical care, etc.).

Mother Teresa died shortly after Princess Diana and both of them deserve Sainthood in my humble opinion!


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Is music making a comeback?

Harp ConcertWell, the question implies that music “went down.” We’re all aware that while sports programs are uber-funded in our schools, music and the arts can be under-funded, and in some cases, even completely diminished.

The good news:  I see music getting some excellent attention and kudos these days! For example:  it is not unusual for 60 Minutes, a very popular TV show, to air something about music or a particular musician. And have you checked on Facebook, a super popular social media platform for our generation? Almost daily, I see at least one post about how music helped someone.

So, perhaps it’s two things:  1) yes, music is making a comeback, and 2) it is being re-purposed, used more and more for healing. I vote yes!!


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What happened 19 years ago?

FacebookI saw a fascinating Facebook post … an energy worker was sharing how the month of March is an important time given the moon cycles and time change, etc. Further, she said it’s the ending of a 19-year cycle that began in 1996, which can be about endings or new beginnings. Reading this made me reflect on what I was doing 19 years ago.

In March 1996 – 19 years ago – I finished the International Harp Therapy Program (IHTP). So now, is it time for an ending or a new beginning? After being at the IHTP conference last week, I’m aware of major transitions of many harp therapists. It is an important time to stay grounded and connected to Source as the “new” reveals itself for many people. What about for you … what is your new beginning or ending/releasing of old energy?


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Appreciating your continued support…

SupportFor the past 15 years (yes, really!), I’ve been blessed to do the work that I am most passionate about, as well as know it’s my deepest purpose for being on the planet at this time. I am most grateful … and I couldn’t do it without your continued support. Thank you!

Here’s a partial list:

  • To all the contacts who say “Yes, let’s do a presentation!” including Iowa Parkinson’s, Summer Institute of Holistic Health and Healing, Mayo Clinic’s Holistic Wellness, Annual Family Caregiver Appreciation, Couples Celebrating Life, Summer Eve of Music, Bacon Club, Day for Cancer Care Providers and many others. Special moments … special memories!
  • To those who ordered “Holiday Blessings” card/CD. Anytime I introduce a new idea/CD, it always feels like a risk. I am humbled by many people who always say “YES!” to my ideas!
  • This past year, I have been much more intentional on having a presence on Facebook, LinkedInTwitter and YouTube. I am amazed at the number of friends, connections, followers … be sure to join in the fun if you haven’t already!
  • To my wonderful team of BioMat distributors. I have loved getting to know you, as well as watching you grow and evolve as you share this wonderful product to help so many others. WOW!
  • For my customers who order CDs and downloads every month to bring relaxation, comfort, peace and calm to your families and those you serve.

I’m deeply passionate about spreading healing, hope and relaxation. Let me know if you have contacts that you think I need to connect with … it would be my pleasure!

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What exactly does this word mean? I was recently at a workshop and the book, “Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World” was highly recommended.

It is a book filled with thought-provoking exercises … and most importantly, it gives helpful suggestions to successfully market products and services in today’s marketplace. The author, Michael Hyatt, spells out step-by-step how to build a “tribe” and connect on social media.

Not in a million years did I think I’d be doing this, but in the past five months, I’ve actually enjoyed my social media interactions.

If you are reading this blog, you are likely part of my tribe – come on over to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube to friend, connect, follow and subscribe. What fun!


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