I Wrote A Song About #Sex for my #PhD | #phdlife #freelance #musician #soundcloud #music #feminism |

Hello Everyone!

So as we know I’m doing a PhD in Music, in the area of Theomusicology & Feminist Musicology and some other things, with a practical element to it. So one of the things I’m looking at is how women and sex is represented in music as my project is interested in sexual politics (in a metaphorical sense) but in a literal sense sexual politics is also about sex. In response to my findings I’m going to produce some songs on the topic. The practical portfolio will have songs on various topics relating to women and music and theology. It will make sense when you read my thesis. Here’s a paraphrased summary of what I’ve learned, the full academic essay will come later.

I chose the topic of marital sex as a context for my section on women, music and sex. My intended outcomes for this song are to present women/wives as strong, mutual/equal with men/husbands, sensual/emotional beings that enjoy sex and have their own opinions and sex drives and sexual desires that are just as important as the man’s within the context of marital sex. Furthermore, as I am a woman of colour, I am writing from the perspective of a woman of colour and I hope that my piece along with the values therein, will address the negative stereotypes about women of colour that perpetuate within Western contemporary songs about sex. In Western popular songs about sex, women of colour are usually represented in the most abased and course way. Furthermore, songwriters have an irritating habit if sexualizing the ways in which women of colour are often discriminated against, race, gender and class, by presenting them as the hot abused poor baby mamas *rolls eyes*, or one night stands, never anything good etc. Instead I, have written and performed a song, from the perspective of a woman of colour about being in a sexual relationship within the socio-economic status and security of being a wife, the lyrics talk about saying “I do” and rings etc. (you don’t have to be some guys baby mama, why are we always shown as the baby mama and not the wife?) and not a victim in sexual activity but a willing, consensual, active and committed participant. (N.B. I am not and have never been married this is just in the fictional narrative of the song).

As mentioned earlier, this song is about the joys of marital sex, as experienced by two fictional newly-weds. It follows the metaphor, imagery and form of ‘Song of Songs’ which is also called Song of Solomon, my favourite book of the Bible, (talking about gardens, fragrant spices, greenery, little foxes, having sex outside, it’s all in Song of Songs lol). Song of Songs is actually about the love between a dark skinned woman and King Solomon.

Song of Solomon 1:5 [NLT]
I am dark but beautiful, O women of Jerusalem- dark as the tents of Kedar, dark as the curtains of Solomon’s tents.

It also represents a counter-cultural approach to romantic relationships between men and women, as it is in fact the woman who pursues the man. I tried to reflect this in arranging it for a female singer and making the tone of the lyrics, that of someone who is a pursuer and initiator of physical intimacy. I also show the woman as initiator as well as mutual consenting participant, instead of a passive participant or victim. The lead vocal (the woman/bride) vocalises decisions about her own sexual desires and needs. You can find the woman in Song of Songs doing the same thing. The theomusicology comes in the narrative of the lyrics which implies that now they’re married they can have sex when and wherever they want to lol (within reason), which is a Christian theological standpoint (I’m a Christian btw). So it implies restraint and commitment before coitus, not after.

I also decided to make it walking pace because I found that most songs about sex and women, especially sex with or about or by women of colour, have quite a strong beat and lyrically emphasise the fun of sex with chauvinistic, misogynoir lyrics that often contextualise the woman and the act within the erotic, encouraging male brains to switch to autopilot, focussing entirely on the physicality and pleasure of sex, not the love. My piece is a response to these negative things I found. It is slow(ish) to be meditative, slow down the heart rate and give the listener space to clear their minds and think. The listener should not get carried away by eroticism but instead wrapped up in the sweetness, sensuality, thoughtfulness and intentional nature of the act of marital sex. Looking forward to adding this to the the final portfolio! So this is a sonic, feminist, womanist critique of pop music about women and sex, using the lived experience of a woman of colour as an analytical tool for reflection. I am trying to promote the knowledge of women by uncovering the lost narratives of our experience, like a Foucauldian genealogy.

Well done for reading, here’s the track! It’s called “I Hope The Neighbours Don’t See”

This YouTube playlist contains the Original, the Orchestral version, PLUS YOU CAN WATCH ME PLAY THE ACOUSTIC VERSION! Play in the embedded player below or Follow this link to play:

You can also listen on SoundCloud. Follow this link to play or use the embedded player below:

The Middle 8/Bridge is inspired by a conversation I had with a middle aged man who told me that when he first got married as a young man, he gave his wife a Hickey on her neck and someone from his church saw it and told him, “now you’re married you can do that where it don’t show” hah! lol

Lots of love

Catherine x

#wedding #makeup

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I Am A #Freelance #MusicTeacher |

Hey hey hey!

Sooo I AM A MUSIC TEACHER! I teach the Alto Saxamaphone 😛 and the flute! I teach the ABRSM syllabus (follow this link to find out more). ABRSM (Associated Board of The Royal Schools of Music is the exam board of The Royal Schools of Music (follow this link to find out more). It’s music exam season and I put a student in for an exam! It’s totally great going to the exam venues when you’re not doing the exams ! It was stressful as a child. As I was not accompanying my student I did not have to go but I wanted to be a supportive teacher so I went!

If you would like music lessons head to my other website www.ridethefaderproductions.com and drop me an email at catherine@ridethefaderproductions.com !

I’ve got to say the Enfield exam centre was the nicest exam centre I have ever been to!

They have a nice practice area!

There were really nice chairs! It was in a vicarage, I had a lovely conversation with the lady at the centre, she goes to the church that the vicarage is attached to and was delightful to talk to!

They had free syllabuses on the table and other free pamphlets that I helped myself to lol!

Again, if you would like music lessons head to my other website www.ridethefaderproductions.com and drop me an email at catherine@ridethefaderproductions.com !

Lots of love and keep calm in your exams!

Catherine x

[Video] Music Exam Time!

Hello everybody,

I’ve put down my books for a bit to focus on my business Ride The Fader Productions www.ridethefaderproductions.com. I am a freelance musician, music teacher (alto sax, flute etc.) and worship leader and it’s exam season. I teach the ABRSM syllabus and was just focussing on my student for the past couple of weeks due to the exam, hope to see you here again soon!

 

Catherine x

#wedding #makeup

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[Video] Vlog Post | #phdlife #theology #musicology #freelance #musician |

Hey hey hey!

Lets catch up via YouTube shall we?

Love Catherine x

Selfie before a tutorial www.catherinewaithe-arnold.com | #freelance #musician #phdlife

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[Video] Where Are The Girls? | #ChibokschoolGirls #missingnigerianschoolgirls #Christianpersecution #womensrights #singer #songwriter #SoundCloud #bringbackourgirls|

Hello Everybody!

I had something else scheduled for today but given the recent news about a second mass abduction of school girls in Nigeria by the Islamist militant group Boko Haram I felt that it was appropriate to discuss that intead.

Here’s the CNN report on the abductions: edition.cnn.com. The girls were taken from their school, they were trying to learn, apparently the army who were supposed to be protecting that area left just before Boko Haram or whoever it was decided to turn up and abduct the girls, seems all too convenient for me?

Last time this happened in Chibok, see the BBC report on this: bbc.co.uk. Unfortunately, the girls were not all found and those that were found were scarred for life or had babies because they had been “sold” or “married off” to the Islamist fighters etc. This kind of gender based violence, sexual exploitation, sexual violence and paedophilia is common amongst these islamist terrorist groups because they don’t have any respect for women or girls. Women and girls to them are things for the use of men. They also have a habit of selling the women and girls of minority ethnic groups like the Yazidi (see this Guardian report as well as this Telegraph report about the Yazidi) and Christian minority groups (see this other Guardian report and Open Doors data on Nigeria) into sexual slavery.

Please find below the song I originally wrote in response to the Chibok school girls abduction, which sadly is relevant again. I know in the West it can be very easy to forget about the suffering and issues going on in the rest of the world but we really need to start paying attention. As mentioned in my previous blog, I work with children and I am a Christian and a woman, which is why things like this move me so profoundly. If I can use my art to draw attention to these issues in order to get them addressed, I’m going to do so, I’m taking a similar approach with my practice based PhD follow this link to find out more.

Watch my song in the embedded player below or click this link.

You can also listen to it on SoundCloud follow this link or use the embedded player below:

Love Catherine xxx

[Video] I’ve Done Lots Of Work! :) | #phdlife #theology #musicology #freelance #musician #soundcloud

Hey everybody,

Please see video below for what’s up with me!

Have a listen to some of my music!

Love and regards,

Catherine

[Video] Message From Me! A #Music #PhD #Student | #Thesis #Theology #Musicology #Theomusicology |

Hello Y’all!

Here’s an update on what I’ve been doing so far with my PhD (follow this link to find out more)

Follow this link to watch or watch the video using the embedded player below:

Follow me on SoundCloud! Follow this link to play or play using the embedded player below:

Love Catherine x

Lovely sky today!

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An Excerpt From My #Thesis | #PhD #musicology #theology #freelance #musician |

Hello everybody!

Here is a redacted excerpt of what I’m doing for my PhD (follow this link to find out more)D. Enjoy!

“Ethics

My research will involve human participants and I have every intention of making sure that my research is conducted in a manner that abides by the principles of research ethics and accords with the law of the land. I have made it a priority to be vetted by the Disclosure and Barring Service, a legal requirement for working with children and vulnerable adults, as I work with children and people in the local community as part of my career. I do not intend to involve participants who are particularly vulnerable or unable to give informed consent like children, the elderly or people with learning disabilities. […] I will always make sure that any participants I choose to talk to understand why I am talking to them and I will make sure that I obtain their consent before including their opinions in my study. Furthermore, I will give all participants the opportunity to remain anonymous if they so wish.

My study will not involve discussion of sensitive topics such as sexual activity and drug use, however, this may come up in the course of my study as I will be talking to adults but such topics are not the intentional foci of my research. This study will not involve recruitment of participants, (including staff), through a Local Authority Department of Social Services or through the NHS, as there will be no invasive or intrusive procedures such as blood taking from participants or the administration of drugs, placebos or other substances, e.g. food substances or vitamins. Consequently, it is also highly unlikely that there will be any physiological stress, pain or more than mild discomfort likely to result from my study. However, due to the topics I wish to discuss with participants […] my study could induce psychological stress or anxiety in participants who are particularly sensitive to the subject matter and could have negative consequences beyond the risks encountered in normal life.

There will be no issues regarding the status of my clearance with the Disclosure and Barring Service, as I am subscribed with the DBS Update service, which automatically checks and updates my eligibility to work with children every year. This study will not be carried out in an NHS or Social Care environment […] ”

Love Catherine x

Look what Cat is up too! [Video] – #freelance #musician #phdlife #musicology #theology

Hey everybody,

(Yes a privileged few get to call me Cat. Everybody else calls me Catherine.) I’ve decided to do a video as I’m ridiculously busy lol. Sorry it’s really quiet you’ll have to turn up your volume I didn’t want the whole station to hear me lol. Enjoy!

Catherine x

5 Top Tips To Stay Healthy For People Who Sit Down All Day

Hello everybody,

So as I said I am quite busy at the moment with my work and have been thinking about physical exercise.

I’ve been writing a lot and this means that I have been less physically active. Which means that I have been forcing myself to exercise more than I normally would to make up for it.

So here’s 5 things that I’ve been doing to keep healthy when I have to sit down quite a lot:

 

  • Don’t sit down all day

Try and get up and walk around, even when you don’t have to. Just to move your legs.

 

  • Eat less

Match your calories to the amount of physical exercise you do. You do not need a Full English Breakfast if all you’re going to do is walk to the office and sit down all day. You don’t need that many calories. I’ve thought for a long time that cereal is a con actually. Especially for those of us in the West, we don’t work the fields any more (most of us) and so we do not need that massive amount of carbs every morning, it’s not necessary. Go cold turkey from cereal from time, you will see the results really quickly and the weight will drop off you. I’ve actually stopped having cereal on a regular basis and this started from last year. I lost puppy fat I didn’t even realise was puppy fat that I was just maintaining from having cereal as a habit/tradition and not necessarily something that I needed.

 

  • Light exercise twice a day

In the morning do stretches, pull ups, crunches, skipping, run up and down your stairs (CAREFULLY), just so you do something to get the metabolism going in the morning. In the evening this can be for heavier exercise if you don’t have time in the morning, lift some weights, go for a run, it also helps me feel tired in the evening so you get a good sleep. Obviously give it a rest from time to time you can’t exercise alll the time.

 

  • Drink Water

Just drink lots of water, you need at least 2 litres of liquid a day.

 

  • Pray and read your Bible

Someone who is mentally fit is more likely to be physically fit! Reading your Bible is about improving your well-being. Do it!

1 Timothy 4:8-9 [NLT] – “[8] “Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come.” [9] This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it.”

 

Hope that helps!

Catherine x