Musical Musings 03-19: Music of The Beatles, Sara Bareilles, and Indigo Girls with Karin Tooley

Music Notes – Sunday, March 19th

This week’s musicians are UUCC Pianist Karin Tooley and Rev. Randy Partain


Opening Hymn: #123 Spirit of Life – McDade

“Spirit of Life” is #123 in our Singing the Living Tradition hymnal and is a favorite hymn of many UUs. The composer of “Spirit of Life”, Carolyn McDade (b. 1935), describes herself as “a songwriter, spiritual feminist, and social activist” ( Originally, McDade was reluctant to see “Spirit of Life” included in our hymnal, as she thinks of her song as a personal and living prayer as opposed to a hymn. Despite her misgivings at the time, “Spirit of Life” has become the most frequently sung hymn within UU congregations around the world – many UUs know the words by heart, and some of our sister churches sing this song together every Sunday.


Centering Music: In My Life – Lennon and McCartney

“In My Life” is a song by The Beatles, released as part of their groundbreaking 1965 album Rubber Soul. The song was primarily written by John Lennon with some contributions by co-writer Paul McCartney and producer George Martin. Although not released as a single, “In My Life” was an important song for other reasons. Lennon described it as his “first real major piece of work” because of the song’s deeply personal meaning, and Rolling Stone magazine ranked “In My Life” as #23 on their list of the “500 Greatest Songs of All Time” and #5 on their list of the “100 Greatest Beatles Songs”.


Offertory Music: Many the Miles – Bareilles

A native of Eureka, California, Sara Bareilles (b. 1979) is a singer, songwriter, pianist, and actor. Bareilles has sold over 3 million albums and 15 million singles to date and has earned three Grammy Awards among other accolades. Aside from her success as a performer and songwriter, Bareilles is also known as the creator of the 2015 hit musical Waitress, which ran more than four years on Broadway, was nominated for Tony and Grammy Awards, and was acclaimed for its all-female production team. Bareilles is also known for her acting on stage and television, and currently stars as Dawn Solano in the musical comedy Girls5eva on the Peacock Network. “Many the Miles” was released in 2007 on Little Voice, Bareilles’s second album.


Closing Hymn: #413 Go Now in Peace – Sleeth

A native of Evanston, Illinois, organist and composer Natalie Sleeth (1930-1992) was a prolific and influential voice in American church music of the 20th century. In particular, her songs “Joy in the Morning” and “Hymn of Promise” have both become staples of many North American congregations. Sleeth was also responsible for two of the songs in Singing the Living Tradition: “Voice Still and Small” (#391) and “Go Now in Peace” (#413), which will be our closing hymn this Sunday.


Postlude: Get Out the Map – Saliers

Emily Saliers (b. 1963) and her longtime friend and musical collaborator Amy Ray (b. 1964) are better known to most people as Indigo Girls, Grammy Award-winning folk rock musicians and activists who have performed together since their high school days. Written by Saliers, “Get Out the Map” was released in 1997 as part of Indigo Girls’ seventh and most successful studio album Shaming of the Sun. Saliers has stated in interviews that “Get Out the Map” was the first song she wrote using the banjo as her primary instrument and that the song was inspired by feeling the need to get out and go somewhere – anywhere, to escape a general feeling of malaise.

                                                        -Mike Carney, UUCC Music Director