Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sunday Song: "When Fall Comes to New England" By Cheryl Wheeler

Fall is by far my favorite season...I just love the colors of the changing leaves, the change in wardrobe, stopping by cider mills and most of all, just being outdoors taking it all in.

Living in a larger city, away from nature, is tough for me at times...and I often miss my days of growing up in the country. So when I read about a cool trail in The Oakland Press just a few miles from my house, I knew I need to check it out. The spot is called Friendship Woods and its in Madison Heights off of 13 Mile.

This little haven is perfect for a 2-mile walk and is especially stunning during this time of year. The photos included on here are ones I took when Jason and I checked it out. We'll definitely be back for future walks to escape the big city without going too far.

There's just nothing sweeter than enjoying the beauty of nature, all the while being close to amenities!

This spot reminded me of a folk song I like called When Fall Comes to New England by Cheryl Wheeler. Even though I technically don't live in New England, the lyrics paint a picture of what's happening in Michigan, too. Listen to it, take a drive down a country road (or a walk in a city park) and take in the beauty that has been painted for all of us to enjoy.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Sunday Song: - GOSPEL

This past week I had a spiritual experience.

It all started when I was talking to my mom a few weeks ago and she mentioned she was organizing a trip to a gospel concert at Joe Louis with some of her church choir friends.

Knowing her choir is an older crowd of white folk, I was quick to say, ", I don't think you're really going to fit in there."

She was then quick to reply, "I don't care. I think it will be a great experience."

Curious, I agreed to go as well...after all, I've never heard gospel live and thought it might be a cool experience outside my typical musical box.

Wow, she was was quite the experience. I had no expectations, but was pumped to see some of the region's best church choirs after reading up on them. The concert was part of the How Sweet The Sound gospel series, presented by Verizon, which seeks to find the "Best church choir in America."

Dang, these choirs have got to be good then, right? Ummm yeah! The word "good" doesn't even do the music I heard justice.

I am a fairly religious person, but spirituality aside, hearing these choirs raised the hairs on my arms and the giant sound produced was nothing short of AMAZING. The vocals, harmony and instrumentation were gorgeous...but more than anything, these people were singing with their hearts and it showed by hand motions and facial expressions. It touched me to see how passionate these people were about the music and about singing for the big man upstairs.

We all left the concert inspired and now I have a new appreciation for gospel music.

Check out the top two choirs from Detroit here. I enjoyed all of the choirs that performed, but I have to say that the Calvary Church was my favorite and the folks of Detroit agreed when they won the people's choice award. It's one thing to watch the video on here, but it was a whole different experience seeing it live.

If there's one thing "outside your box" you should do this year, it's to go see the finals of all the regions across the U.S. perform on Nov. 7 (in Detroit, woot woot!). Check out additional information and purchase tickets here.

Major props to Verizon for putting this together. I know a good event when I see one and this one was flawless and I am already looking forward to next year's show.