The music I’ve chosen today popped up on the radio the other week. The British composer Derek Bourgeois wrote “Serenade” for his own wedding.
Having obtained a copy of it from the composer to play on the organ, I realised that what appeared to be a nice “easy to play” jaunty little tune emerged from an irregular time signature of 11/8 moving into 13/8. I gave it a go but after a while my hands and feet decided they would rather I played more regularly timed music!
We live in rhythmically irregular times if I could put it like that: our normal rhythms have moved into a more irregular and challenging 11/8 zone. But then, for most of us, life is never that perfect, easy and rhythmically straightforward. Yet, at the moment, stories of compassion, courage, endurance, kindness, community, new life and people making a real difference emerge daily: Stories or “tunes” bringing hope and future from amongst suffering, isolation and even despair.
This version of Serenade is played by the Grimethorpe Colliery Band, a band representing communities that know what it’s like to see “tunes” emerging from irregular rhythms.