Hey So Here’s How My #Gig Went! | #freelance #musician #harpist #harp #musicteacher #freelancemusician #ridethefaderproductions #pilgrimshall #brentwood #Christian #worship

Hey!

Just thought I would feedback from last weekend!

Yeah totally had a great and awesome time playing with everybody! If you are interested in me harping for you head to my other website: www.ridethefaderproductions.com and drop me an email at catherine@ridethefaderproductions.com

Back-story, my friend Sally Cranham (read about her project Feathers and Whirlwinds here) contacted me a month ago about something going on at Pilgrims Hall again. Sally invited me to play there before! Last time I played my Clarinet as well as my harp!

I took a picture of my feet!

I have an electro-acoustic harp, basically, it’s the same principle as an acoustic guitar, it’s an acoustic instrument that it has a pick-up in it. That means that it can be amplified the same as an acoustic guitar. That also means I can plug it into an effects pedal and I have!! Hehehehe.

Yeah it was totally awesome people were really into the music we played and most importantly we all worshipped God! It was the 50th anniversary celebration of Pilgrims Hall which is a Christian retreat and counselling/training centre.

The man who preached was bang on point with his theology I really enjoyed it! I must confess this is the first time I have ever restrung my harp before a gig by myself but Jesus helped me to do it. It’s not easy by the way…..

There is a nuance to playing the harp in a band. The clips will show you that I am not playing all the time. The reason for this is firstly, to play in an ensemble you have to understand arranging and not just your instrument but everyone else’s too. The harp occupies the same frequencies as the keyboard, guitar and bass but it is not as resonant (loud) and the timbre is soft (it doesn’t have a great deal of attack at all except for the top end). So I have to pick spaces where the music is quieter to play but I also have to be mindful that I am not doing what the piano can (harp and piano music is the same except harp chords are only 4 notes deep in each hand). Firstly because it’s not gracious to dominate the team! Secondly because the piano does what it does better than the harp (chords, string pads on a synthesiser, generally being loud lol ect). Even if the harp is loud, the timbre is so soft that it will either muddy the mix played too much or just make everything else seem loud by doubling everyone else’s notes. Less is more 🙂 So I have to play at times using techniques that everybody wants to hear when they see a harp that are idiosyncratic to the harp and or only the harp can do well, like a Glissando (which the harp does better than the piano) and occupy frequencies that are resonant in the harp (like the higher pitches), that others can’t or don’t have a directive to play when there are spaces in the music, (there’s no point me even bothering to play mid frequencies when the acoustic is playing, the harp gets lost in the mix it’s soo soft). Improvisational harping takes quite a lot of thinking:

 

My Harping History!!

I write songs for the harp, remember this from 2015!?

I’ve been making some experimental harp music!

I’ve played the Harp for a wedding!

I’ve given a therapeutic harp lesson (read about that here):

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#freelance #musicteacher www.catherinewaithe-arnold.com

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And I’ve played the harp as part of a worship band for various people many times:

I also like to play it for fun!

Well that’s all folks! If you are interested in me harping for you head to my other website: www.ridethefaderproductions.com and drop me an email at catherine@ridethefaderproductions.com

 

Catherine x

I took another picture of my feet I think this is officially a thing! lol

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Children were toasting marshmallows on this earlier

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GIG ALERT: I’ve got a #gig this #Saturday in #Brentwood | #freelance #musician #harpist #musicteacher

Hey everybody,

I will be playing my harp at Pilgrims Hall on Saturday evening for their 50 Year Celebration. See their website for further details: https://www.pilgrimshall.co.uk/

Pop down this Saturday from 2pm if you want to see what’s going on or if you merely want to see me harp pop down just for the Evening Celebration which is at 7pm!

If you want to book me visit my other website www.ridethefaderproductions.com.

Be there or be square!

I’ve decided to try new things

Hello

I’m thinking about pushing the boundaries and to stop being so “safe” and to try new things. That is all. I’m busy trying new things lol.

Here’s the playlist with my new song about marital sex in the garden from last week. There’s 3 versions in the playlist, the original, acoustic and orchestral, let me know which one you like best.

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:

Catherine x

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

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#wedding #makeup

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I Wrote A New #Song – ish lol | #freelance #musician #worshipleader #musicteacher |

Hey everybody!

I hope everybody had a really good Easter! I did a lot of things and I am pretty tired after doing so much, obviously, as a Christian, worship leader and Music Pastor I spent most of Easter in church! See my previous post for me performing at an event 2 weeks ago.

Below is footage of me performing one of my songs called “Song of Songs (Congregation Version)” on Easter Sunday. It’s an adaptation of a song I wrote called “Song of Songs” which is based on my favourite book of the Bible, Song of Songs, (follow this link to read that fascinating book!) on Easter Sunday. Watch it in the embedded player below or (follow this link to watch)

I changed the lyrics to make it a worship song and also to make it more comfortable for people to sing out loud, watch the performance of the original song below to understand what I mean lol. Watch in the embedded player below or (follow this link to watch)

You can also listen to more on my SoundCloud profile here’s some highlights enjoy! Play in the embedded player below (or follow this link):

Now I’m back to work on my Thesis!

P.S. I gave in and tried some of those online dating sites/apps, it was all fun and good till my postman found me on one of the apps, now I just feel soo awkward… lol

Anyway take it easy!

Catherine x

Come Worship With Me! | #freelance #musician #worshipleader |

Hey everybody!

The other day I lead worship at an event! I thought I would put up the footage so people could come worship with me online! The following times are where I am leading worship:

1:28:26-1:33:30 – You’re My Healer

1:33:34-1:37:42 – Strength Will Rise (they eventually clapped in time… lol)

1:46:23-1:58:00 – Jamming Session (Instrumental of one of my original compositions
called ‘Hallelujah’, which I sing later on)

1:58:40-2:03:36 – You’re My Healer (Reprise)

2:09:01-2:12:00-  Hallelujah (original song by me)

Follow this link to listen or use the embedded player below:

The event was bi-lingual, people spoke the following languages: Brazilian, Portuguese, Spanish, English and Yoruba. Normally, at church I speak a bit between songs but I was soo nervous for some reason lol, I didn’t have anyone to translate anything I said anyway lol, they did for the message which was good, next time I’ll ask for a translator.

Big thanks to everybody who helped make Saturday evening happen, as well as those who stepped in last minute to accommodate!

P.S. Let’s crowd source some prayer for Catherine lol. My blood sugar has been up and down lately, let’s pray that it stabilises and I don’t absent mindedly give myself too much insulin again lol.

Lots of love

Catherine

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] 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

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Lovely sky today!

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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

SPECIAL EDITION: #HappyNewYear! #2018 – Praise #Jesus! #worship #directorofmusic #worshipleader #freelance #musician #musicteacher

Hellloooooooo!

Happy New Year 2018! This is Catherine reporting from church! I’ve been doing the following since yesterday evening:

Led worship on the acoustic guitar, used the pedal with my heels!

Played sax the during a second worship

…and as Director of Music at my church, with the help of Jesus, I’ve organized a whooollleee load of other things, including some of the food, there’s always food at these things! 😛

Hope you guys had amazing celebrations/church services/mass. All the best and remember to check out my blog www.catherinewaithe-arnold.com every Thursday between 8pm-9pm UTC/GMT for new blog posts about: Life (like this post), Love (or this post), My Music (definitely click here), Theology (I like to breakdown topics into digestible chunks), Womanist Theology (my most read blog post, it’s strong coffee), Theomusicology (to come), Photography (click here to see my pics) and my PhD (follow this link to read all about it)!

Also, if you wish to hire me for my composing/performing/worship leading/music teaching head to my other website www.ridethefaderproductions.com !  🙂

Here’s some music enjoy 🙂 follow this link to play or use the embedded player below:

Praise Jesus!

Catherine Waithe-Arnold