July and August 2 peace campaign involvements/ invitations and some weeks traveling away from England visiting Plum Village – and 3 recordings, a Pete Seeger cover and 2 own songs with violinist Nigel Armstrong.
The first three weeks of Summer were spent (with a few people reading this 🙂 ) at the Plum Village monastery near Bordeaux where I spent 6 months last year to January. Visiting this time to project again with the Plum Village schools ‘Wake Up Schools’ to make some tutorial videos for their songs. Look forward to sharing these later in the year.
I also spent some time with the PV children’s programme and had the pleasure of working with story teller Jennifer Ramsay adding music to a play about a bull who didn’t want to fight! The Plum Village summer weeks are full of so much colour, music and community, many families go and there are volunteering opportunities each year.
Week three was the Wake Up Earth week – 500 18-35 year olds , another annual event of talks, Plum Village meditation and much caring and sharing of music, tea and life…
While in the Village this time I had the blessing of meeting up with my friends Sergio Costa (to add some bass to a recording of Human All – in the PV studios above) and Nigel Armstrong.
As well as being a sweet person to hang out with Nigel plays violin for the Philadelphia Orchestra and we got together to play a few songs for film maker Wouter Verhoeven who is in the Village making a documentary.
‘Human-all’ and ‘Lay Down’ recorded on my phone recorder – more on the film sometime next year.
Two invitations and a song to close. If you’d be interested in feeling what Plum Village is like and you are in London this Autumn there is a pop up ‘mindfulness hub‘ in brick lane. The monastics from the village are visiting to run workshops from the 5th to 13th September. I’ll be there as part of the ‘be-in’ on Friday sharing some songs
A little before the Summer I also became involved in the September peace week at the Excel Centre. Sadly, arms trading continues to be a part of our world and this year London hosts the controversial trade event for the arms industry . During the week of the set up there are groups meeting to peacefully demonstrate and show what an alternative future might look like. All events are listed here. Myself and friends are involved on the Tuesday for ‘No faith in War‘ a day of peace and faith groups coming together, ‘united on a belief in peace’. The day starts with a meditation by the young adults Plum Village group from 10am.
Ed McCurdy wrote this in 1950, I learned from the singing of Pete Seeger:
‘Last Night I had the strangest Dream’