Homestead Music

Best Practices - Photography, Canon 60D, Canon 70-200 mm 2.8 IS L Series Lens, Canon Camera, Canon Lens, Canon Live View, Fall, Farm, Farmhouse, High Dynamic Range (HDR), Home, Homestead, Journaling, Light Intensity, Night, Photoblog Intention, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Season, Still Life, Sunset, Weather
Buttertown Homestead - Fort Vermilion, Alberta

Buttertown Homestead – Fort Vermilion, Alberta

My wife points us to music tonight. At day’s end she’s responding to both of us, each a vortex of thoughts, moving, tumbling, clustering, dot-to-dot, aiming toward productive, tangible result – saturated with the day, not here, not in the now, needing to release the grip of endeavor, to withdraw and to settle. Time away from the pursued pace is needed, time that interrupts the cycle of ‘home-work-and-back-again,’ that kind of quality time that permits fresh aspect and new grasp on perspective, a good thing. Music is our choice tonight for plying away our adhesion, breaking contact with the day that’s been. The music we turn to is longstanding legacy from BBC Radio Ulster’s Sunday show at 8:00 p.m., ‘Rhythm and Soul’ hosted by Steve Stockman; it’s music that’s been on my wife’s iPod this week in and around her classroom. David Gray’s Hammersmith concert, ‘Live, In Slow Motion,’ is the concert video my wife chooses and with our daughter away at dance class we sit down to supper, downstairs, in front of our television and engage this concert, slowing ourselves, listening to a cellist, two guitarists, a bass player, a drummer and David Gray bring music to Life. Allowing ourselves to become vulnerable to lyric, melody, rhythm, sound and silence, we are drawn to familiar songs, songs I’ve fretted in former days – ‘Sail Away,’ ‘Shine,’ ‘My Oh My,’ ‘Silver Lining.’ These songs draw us out to that part of our Lives beyond endeavor. They open-out memory and memories. We move into and travel along new melodies. Engaging with these songs orients us in terms of presence and our present – where we are needing and aiming to be, a reset of sorts.

Homestead – this October exposure is one of a handful of images taken within the golden hour near Fort Vermilion in a pre-winter sunset, winter-ready clouds billowing in regular, heavy patterns across the sky. The linear clarity of homestead lines mingles with the subtle bend in its roof and the regular, yet unique line of each board. It’s old, yet it’s solid and well-preserved. Coloration and luminance chosen in editing work best with the available light and draw me to this photo, again and again.

I am definitely wanting to be out and about with my camera, perhaps with others seeing other ways of viewing the world. My Canon 60D has developed a hiccough, though – three years wear and tear has made the spring ejection of the SD card difficult; it’s also become difficult to set the card back in. Sending the camera for repair is likely to cost one-third to one-half the cost of replacing the camera with another 60D body or its next generation body the 70D. And, then I wonder if I should move to a pro-sumer camera the Canon 7D, 6D or 5D.

    T h a n k y o u ‘ s

– My gratitude goes out to all who are a part of this blog, those of you who add your comments and engage in the dialogue about photos, photography and music.

Listening to – Tyler Bates’ ‘Ventura,’ one of those captivating songs from Emilio Estevez’ film, ‘The Way.’ The post reminds me of several Martyn Joseph songs – ‘The Good in Me is Dead’ from the ‘Don’t Talk About Love’ album and talking with Martyn at the Alexandra Community Hall in Edmonton, Alberta on the eve of the Iraq invasion. Other songs come to mind – ‘Wake Me Up,’ ‘Strange Kind of Friend,’ ‘Walk Down the Mountain’ and ‘Just Like the Man Said.’

Quote to Inspire: “Still images can be moving and moving images can be still. Both meet within soundscapes.” Chien-Chi Chang

Walking On – U2’s 360 Tour in Edmonton, 2 June 2011

Canon Camera, Night, Project 365 - Photo-a-day, Weather

Edmonton – June 2, 2011 – In 1988, in Anzac, Alberta I painted the walls of a Northland School Division teacherage making it home for my wife and I in our second year of marriage. That fall, I listened and painted as a song aired for the first few times on the local FM radio station from Fort McMurray featuring Robbie Robertson and familiar ‘Joshua Tree’ vocals as back-up to the song with also familiar chiming guitar work. As I listened I was confirming the sacred arena that the lyrics were dealing with. Backing to the song was provided by Bono and Edge of U2. The song, Sweet Fire of Love, alluded to and opened out the experience of awakening to the Holy Spirit’s work. In the lyrics, awakening was the issue and the story side of the song had a biographical element, something true and encountered by members of U2.

I would read about such awakening in Steve Stockman’s Walk On – The Spiritual Journey of U2, a book originating in response to a Canadian in Vancouver, British Columbia challenging Steve to set out proofs that members of U2 were Christian. There was much disbelief about U2 being Christian. The band’s appeal to audiences would seem worldly and something quite far away from … ministry. Yet, Steve set about looking through the U2 canon to establish context and biblical reference for U2 songs and in doing so exposed the bad and good, the hurt and the love experienced in the current Church.  Moreover, Steve considered the role contemporary secular and Christian music play in overcoming or ameliorating a grace-filled Christian walk.

Throughout this time of challenge regarding U2’s credible Christian walk, Steve hosted a Sunday radio show called Rhythm and Soul on BBC Radio Ulster (8:00 p.m. – Ulster, 1:00 p.m. – Alberta) that examined Christian message found in contemporary Christian and secular music; over the internet, I tuned in from 2002 to 2007. By the time Rhythm and Soul completed its run, Steve had written three books considering music in the Christian walk, completed a Masters of Theology, led youth (young adult) missions trips to Cape Town, South Africa and had served as Dean of Derryvolgie Hall at Queens University in Belfast, Ireland. In the summer of 2005, I enjoyed an hour’s visit and dialogue with Steve at Regent College (Vancouver, British Columbia). After a few years, Steve became chaplain at Fitzroy Presbyterian Church in Belfast, Ireland; he now has a blog that follows from his Rhythm and Soul days and his Rhythms of Redemption blog – its called Soul Surmise. For Steve, Bono of U2 remains his favourite Irish pastor. For me, I finally got to see U2 in Edmonton, Alberta at Commonwealth Stadium in my forty-ninth year, days before I would turn fifty – 2 June 2011.

The photographs presented here capture something of the evening.  It being an overcast day on June 2, 2011, the night became chilly and U2 donned extra clothing to stay warm.  The evening held stories of Bono hitch-hiking in a Vancouver rainstorm and being picked up by a Vancouver Canuck’s player who Bono rewarded with tickets to the Edmonton performance. Bono sought out a female audience member to sing a Canadian tune, Neil Young’s Heart of Gold. The whole of the stadium knew each song of the U2 canon; all sang with U2, and together. As I would remark later – I was glad to be able to take my wife, daughter and son to see a live performance by a band whose music has filled our home through the years – a memorable, once-in-a-lifetime night.

Here’s the set list.

  1. Even Better Than The Real Thing
  2. I Will Follow
  3. Get On Your Boots
  4. Magnificent
  5. Mysterious Ways
  6. Elevation
  7. Until The End Of The World
  8. All I Want Is You
  9. Stay (Faraway, So Close!)
  10. Beautiful Day
  11. Pride (In The Name Of Love)
  12. Miss Sarajevo
  13. Zooropa
  14. City Of Blinding Lights
  15. Vertigo
  16. I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight
  17. Sunday Bloody Sunday
  18. Scarlet
  19. Walk On
  20. Encore: One
  21. Where The Streets Have No Name
  22. Encore 2: Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me
  23. With Or Without You
  24. Moment of Surrender

Curious quote for the pondering:

“… some may call it blasphemy

But I believe it’s true

God lies there beside you in the gutter

And grace, like a mother holds you.” ~ Steve Stockman, from poem, Up on Scarlet Street

 Listening to Ryan Adams’ Wonderwall from the album, Love is Hell