Blog Archives

WCW – Never Been Gone

I’ve never posted about the #WCW (Women Crush Wednesday) social media trend, but this seems like an appropriately random time to start. The natural starting point for me at least is the enduring appeal of singer – songwriter Ms. Carly Simon, whose music I grew up with, and was semi – fixated on for a time in my younger years. (I acknowledged that in a solo performance a few years ago and was surprised by the warm reaction.)

Anyhow, Simon recently posted a picture on her Instagram account that exemplified her continued aura of beguilement, at least for me. The picture shows her on Lambert’s Cove Beach on Martha’s Vineyard, not far from her home. That beach is also a favorite destination for my family members and I when we can get in – usage is generally restricted during the high summer season. In the picture, Simon seems to strike just the right pose of slight amusement and satisfaction, clearly enjoying the moment but not gloating in it. (It would be a perfect album cover shot for her if she had an upcoming release waiting in the wings.)

This picture perfectly fits Simon’s role in my current musical tastes – someone whom I “come back around again” to from time to time, to paraphrase one of her well – known lyrics, but don’t fixate on with regularity. Nonetheless, her music and persona continue to be emblematic of Martha’s Vineyard, the family homestead, for me, and presumably in a similar way for others. I didn’t shy away from occasionally watching her 1987 concert at Menemsha if I’m feeling homesick, and her song Never Been Gone remains the most iconic example of being home in Massachusetts. A handful of her songs have additional family or home region associations for me.

So that picture brought a brief resurgence in my appreciation of her work, which has been more on the periphery recently as she has maintained a lower public profile over the last several years. Her children Sally and Ben now take the lead in the family business, which she often supports during their Vineyard shows, and I last saw her join Ben onstage three years ago in Edgartown.

Her music remains emblematic of a certain special or cherished time and place, and I’m sure it will always be that way for my family members and I.

Crowdfunding and the Arts

Recently something had led me to believe that crowd funding had passed its moment, with sites like Kickstarter and its relations seeming to have lost their novelty – and more awareness about accompanying service fees or editorial challenges that the various sites might impose on their funders.

But, two current projects involving music have shown me that’s not the case, and so I wanted to give them a quick shout out here.

My longtime friend Christa has successfully funded a Kickstarter project for her second album generating support from 142 (!) backers including myself. (Her folk-based music is definitely worth a listen and can be heard here.)

Meanwhile, famous musical daughter – and versatile artist in her own right – Sally Taylor, whom I followed during her active musical touring career throughout my high school years, has launched a new Indiegogo campaign for an ambitious and unique-sounding multidisciplinary art project due to debut next summer on Martha’s Vineyard.

I am sure there are many more examples of crowd funding continuing to make an impact, but those are the two that have my attention right now.