Martha Martha Martha!

If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I have something of an obsession with Martha Stewart’s instagram. Or perhaps you gleaned as much from reading this blog.

But there’s one particular tweet I’d like to draw your attention to:

A song cycle based on the photo captions of Martha Stewart’s instagram? A grand idea to be sure, but I’m a busy guy. When, if ever, would I find the time to devote to such a whimsical project?

OK, yes, it’s a bit of a joke that I used a month of my lockdown time to compose a 45-minute song cycle on the instagram poetry of Martha Stewart. But you know what? It was pretty important to me. It was a form of music therapy. I wrote these songs during this past February and March. The dreariest, chilliest time of year, and thus, the loneliest time of the pandemic. I was toying with a number of composition projects, but I chose this one because I thought it would bring me some much needed joy and light.

And it did! One of the great advantages of this piece was that it was not only entertaining to write, but it also gave me new material to play and sing at home (and yes, I have written many apologetic texts to my neighbors. Luckily, they’re into it!)

The other great thing is that it gave me a very entertaining party trick to take into the post-vaccinated world. I’ve now sung the songs at a number of house parties and they always go down a treat. I hope others will use them in this context — at salons, soirées, and diletti musicale.

And the other thing I hope? That Martha gets to hear them (preferably performed by me, for her, at one of her properties.) I’m trying to make it happen, but very open to help. Email me if you have ideas. I have quite a bit to thank her for.