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Music Blogging

May 18, 2006

Four songs from my Ghana album project are available for download at my MySpace page.

Road to Prestea: There really is no road to Prestea. It is a small village in southern Ghana near a mine, but the chief source of income is growing and processing cassava. The way of life in Prestea is amazing, and it takes only a short while there to see what it really is to live in community.

Sunrise in Mole: The Mole National Park in northern Ghana is truly awesome. The song is basically a travel log (travelogue?) chronicling three cities we visited. In Mole, we took a brief “safari” ride during which we saw elephants, egrets, crocodiles, warthogs and baboons. Tamale (which is actually pronounced tah-mah-LAY, but I mispronounced it in the song because it fit the meter better) is a predominantly Muslim city in northern Ghana. It is rapidly developing, but there are constant reminders that it is a developing country (electricity goes on and off frequently, and some of the ladies on the trip did get a bit of an electrical shock in the shower when reaching to turn off the water.) The marketplace in Tamale was hopping. Finally came Peki and Ho. Ho is where the headquarters of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church is located, and where we stayed for several days. Peki is the nearby home of a seminary of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church. They host an elder care program that is referenced in the song. As a seminary they train both pastors and musicians for the church, and I got to take drum lessons from the chief music teacher, Wilson.

Goat on a Stick: Okay. We received a visit from a fellow named Gershon who used to be a student at Eden and is now a chaplain in the Ghanaian Air Force. He invited us to the Officer’s Mess for an evening where we were served goat-kabobs and beer. The goat was surprisingly great. It was spicy and tender. To kill time on the bus, I wrote this little tune which has unfortunately become the theme song of the trip.

Resurrection: This is a theological reflection upon visiting Elmina Slave Castle. Slaves were held captive here until shipped to “the new world.” Actually, many died before they could be shipped. The conditions were completely inhumane. If you can make the tour without a combination of sadness, disgust and rage you aren’t human. At one point, just as I was starting to feel overwhelmed, there were drums and singing down below outside the castle. A celebration of life in the shadow of atrocity: to me, that is a sign of the resurrection – a sign that Christ is still alive and still working in the world. Recognition of death and affirmation of life all in one breath.

More will be coming, so songs will eventually be bumped off the island. I can only host four at a time, you know.

Grace and Peace,

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