Song & Story
The Music of Jacquelyn Brown
Review By: Loretta Kemsley
Sitting close to the sand, listening to the surf as it kisses the shore, one feels in tune with the stars and the moon, or, as Jacquelyn Brown says in her song, "Daughter of the Moon," in "awe of her creation."
On her album, "Awakening: The Breath of Life," Brown's clear soprano blends with the pluck of her harp string, creating an aura of soft introspection and easing the ache of a weary heart. This album evokes the relaxation of candlelight, or conversely, the earth's celebration at the first light of dawn.
Brown lives in London, Ontario, in Canada, and has combined music with movement since the tender age of three. "I have been playing the harp since 1990 and found the soothing, comforting and healing vibrations of the harp are a kind of personal therapy for me. Most harpists and harpers I talk to feel the same way. There is a unique calm or peacefulness that permeates every cell and dimension of the player. You are never quite the same after a session on the harp."
"Awakening" is a generous hour of music, all uplifting. Brown plays a Salvi Ana harp from Italy, a Muma Celtic harp from Canada, an okarina from Chile, and an 01/WFD Korg music workstation. In the background, one can hear her finches. Her songs reflect her ties with nature, family, and soul. "There is something quite profound about the vibrational energy that comes off of harp strings when they are pulled with intention," Brown says, "the intention of being fully present in the moment. The resonant properties of a vibrating harp string produce frequencies that are in and beyond our hearing range."
These harmonics travel infinitely, working on dimensions that most of us do not comprehend, but our spirits, our minds, our emotions, and our bodies are affected. We know instinctively that we need more; we don't want the music to stop. We know that we feel better for having heard it.
In the song "In Bed of Roses," Eve says, "I felt creation move, blow the breath of life into me." This version of Eve seems to speak for the entire album when she says, "Whether it be awakening to a new day, like Eve, or to new dreams, passions, insights, love, birth, life, death, or injustice, the very yearnings of the spirit, body and mind are fresh new breaths of life which empower us to keep moving on this plane. When that breath of life is threatened or extinguished, one moves on to new dimensions, new life...the true gift!"
Brown's other release, "Earth * Air * Fire * Water," leads one to an inner dance, a spiritual sway, in rhythm with the tides, gently rocking the soul into mellowness where ideas surface and take precedence over everyday cares. It is a fresh gust, blowing away the embers of hatred and fear, leaving the fresh air of communion with nature.
As artist in residence at St. Paul's Anglican Cathedral in London,
Brown played for a Diana, Princess of Wales, memorial just a
few hours after the televised funeral. Her music is also heard on
the award-winning palliative care video, "Not A Day Goes By,"
the story of a brave London woman who died of cancer. The frightening
and lonely hospital experience is narrated by her very eloquent husband.
Serenity is the gift Brown gives to her listener. An hour spent with her music is, indeed, "sweet release."
Earth * Air * Fire * Water
Awakening: The Breath of Life
Bertina Celina Productions
Box 217 Stn B
London, Ontario, Canada N6A4V8
Loretta Kemsley is the president of Women Artists and Writers International, a writing coach and consultant, with several awards credited to her published works.
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|| Letting Go || || Out of Montana ||
|| PLEASE--REJECT ME! || || Sweet Release(Review) ||
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