A to Z – Fur Elise who?

A2Z-BADGE_[2016]April 2016 A to Z Challenge. I’m blogging about history.

F is for ‘Fur Elise’ who?

 

 

 

 

AETJFR Ludwig van Beethoven

AETJFR Ludwig van Beethoven

Most people are familiar with Beethoven’s piece “Fur Elise,” but there are still questions about who the piece was written for. The original manuscript, which has since been lost, was composed when he was forty years old and going deaf. It was dated 27 Apr 1810. It was found upon Beethoven’s death by Ludwig Nohl in 1826, but it wasn’t published until nearly forty years later in 1865. (If you’re trying to piece together a timeline in your head, that was the same year the civil war ended in America.)

The version we know today was the first draft transcribed by Nohl, but there was also a later revised and incomplete version in Beethoven’s hand dated 1822 that used arpeggios in the left hand and had a few extra bars.

It isn’t certain who Elise was, but there are a few possibilities:

  1. The manuscript may have been transcribed wrong, and it may have been “Fur Therese,” as in Therese Malfatti. Beethoven was in love with her and proposed marriage to her in 1810, but she turned him down and married someone else.
  2. It may have been written for soprano Elisabeth Rockel (called Elise and Betty) who had befriended Beethoven in 1808.
  3. It may have been written for Juliane Katharine Elisabet Barensfeld (called Elise) who was a child prodigy and live with Beethoven’s friend Johann Malzel. Supposedly, Beethoven dedicated the song to the 13-year-old Elise as a favor to the above mentioned Therese who lived next door to Malzel.
  4. There is also a theory that ‘Elise’ was a general term for ‘Sweetheart.’

Whomever the girl was, she must have been very special for him to dedicate to her such a beautiful piece.

52 Ancestors #29 The Musical Earl Culpepper

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This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is “musical.”

Being a professional musician all my life, I’ve always given thought to where my musical talents came from. My mother sang in church. I have a great grandmother and a great great grandfather (different lines) who played a pump organ. I also have a great grandfather from Ireland who played the fiddle. But the one who usually comes to mind is my maternal grandfather Earl Culpepper.

culpepper Earl Culpepper

I have many fond memories of sitting on the front porch with him as he played his guitar and sang. Sometimes he’d even pull out his harmonica and use some contraption around his neck to hold it up to his mouth. He always sang “Hey Good Lookin'” by Hank Williams and sounded a lot like him.

Earl was born in Mississippi on Christmas Eve of 1914 to Sam Culpepper and Annie Blanks. He was the eighth child of the union and a girl follow him. At age 21, he married Ina Inez Burke and they had two daughters – one being my mother. Earl worked his whole life at the Burnley Shirt Factory in Meridian. After his wife died in 1975, he married a lady from the factory who was widowed. They married in 1977. Earl died 5 Mar 1994 at the age of 79 at Anderson Hospital following respiratory failure/aspiration pneumonia following a stroke. He was buried next to Ina at Liberty Baptist Cemetery, Duffee, Newton Co, MS. MS death cert no 9405973.

RIP pawpaw and thanks for the music! ♪♫♪

Unexpected Coolness from…Dolly Parton?

dollyJust because I’m moving to Nashville in three days doesn’t mean I’m going country, but sometimes unexpected cool things just happen. I like Dolly, but I wouldn’t say I’m a fan. I like a few of her songs and she seems to be a kick-ass business woman. She’s a fabulous song writer and everyone agrees, she’s a nice person. I don’t think anyone has ever said a bad word about her. That being said, her voice is a little squeaky to me, not very pleasant, until you turn her 45 on 33 rpm.

The result is this…. http://www.wimp.com/unexpectedsound/

It sounds like Fleetwood Mac and I’m completely in love with it. Enjoy!

To be inspiring!

Being inspiring for other’s creativity is so awesome… as I usually struggle with my own.

Here are a couple nuggets inspired by my book The Legend of Stuckey’s Bridge. Granted, I didn’t create the legend, but I’m happy to have brought it back to life and more than thrilled that others have been touch by the book enough to put their time and talents to it.

The first is a folk song written by Kris Carmichael.

The second is a blog post at Lowry Wilson’s page along with his conceptual photography you just have to check out.

It’s a little creep, no? 🙂

I’m outta here! – ’til January

1477909_10152020754213326_357455833_nI’m off to sail around the globe again. <– that’s my office.

I’ll be out of the country until January 5, so mind the fort while I’m gone. I’ll catch up with everyone when I return. A couple things I need you to do while I’m gone…

1. Have a very nice holiday season with your family and friends

and

2. Give someone an extra helping of LOVE today.

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I’m going to work/play now. Buh-Bye and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Monday Music – When you can play like this, you can PLAY!

Whew – these books have taken over my life for the last two weeks. Let’s do something different!

996966_10202610971501100_49121576_nI’d like you to meet someone. This man is very dear to me. I’d like to introduce you to the incomparable Skip Pruitt. We spent a few years on the road together, and he is a dear! We spent more nights than I can count, sitting at the dining table on the tour bus, coloring pictures of The Little Mermaid and watching the same movie over and over again while heading to the next town…and the next…and the next. We only had one VHS with us (Yes, it was a few years ago), and believe it or not, I can’t for the life of me remember the name of the movie, but I DO have blackmail photos around here somewhere of him coloring pretty pictures! Now, why would we only have one movie with us but have a whole box of crayons? I think my next Monday Music blog will be about packing for road gigs.

Anyway…

Skip is a master. His tone, his soul, his stage presence, his professionalism are second to none. His love for the music, the melody, the meaning of the song simply oozes out of every note he plays. He has a new Christmas CD coming out November 21st and I can hardly wait!

In the meantime, this will have to tide us over. This is my FAVORITE gospel song, written by the great Richard Smallwood. Skip puts a whole new meaning to the song Total Praise.

Saturday Snippet – Complete with Music and Indians

Saturdays are the days I usually post snippets of one of my books, but today is slightly different. As many of you know, when I’m not writing historical fiction books, I’m playing music – the whole “professional musician by night, indie author by day” thing. That being said, I tend to get caught up in the music of the time of whatever book I’m writing. My latest work takes place in 1812, the setting is the Mississippi Territory, known today as Clarke County, Alabama, and a few of the characters are Mvskoke (Muskogee Creek Indian.) Because of this, I’ve been listening to traditional Creek music for the last few months, and this particular song has stuck in my head. It feels more like an ancient chant than a song, and I can’t stop playing it. It is “Heleluyvn.”

elly cover_webHere’s an excerpt from “Elly Hays” coming Nov 4 to all online retailers. Elly is my 5th great grandmother, and the book is the third in the Okatibbee Creek series.

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The laborers had erected a small makeshift platform in the middle of the meadow. It rose two feet off the ground so Tecumseh could be seen above the massive gathering of people. Rumors had circulated for months that he would come, as it had been foretold by a bright comet in the nighttime sky in March of 1811, and the gathering crowd numbered into the hundreds, perhaps closer to a thousand, representing over a dozen of the twenty Mvskoke clans.

As the people waited for him to take the platform, they grew increasingly impatient. They had been assembling for days to hear him speak, so not only were they weary from their travels, but the scorching sun was not improving their disposition. The air was as stagnant as the wait, with not even the slightest of breezes to offer relief from the stifling heat. The afternoon sun melting into evening had made them agitated, and they grumbled and occasionally began chanting for the great warrior to appear and address them. When he did not take the platform after a few minutes, the chanting quieted to a dull objection, only to start up again within a short amount of time.

Over the last few months, reports had surfaced that the Americans would once again declare war against the British. Before and since the revolution, the British had befriended the Indians, asking for their help in warding off the Americans’ expansion. Since the Indians considered the land theirs in the first place, they were pleased to oblige. The Indians had never asked for a favor in return, but the waves of white settlers were growing, continually trespassing upon their tribal land. They needed help, they needed answers, they needed to stop the encroachment. They eagerly awaited Tecumseh’s speech and they were anxious to hear a plan. They wanted to know what he wanted of them. If the reports of an impending war were true, perhaps this was the time to join forces with the British and defeat the white man once and for all.

Finally, a group of elders dressed in vibrant tribal robes with headdresses embellished with porcupine fur and hawk feathers stepped up onto the platform. The cheer began small and grew to a fevered pitch as it spread across the field of warriors like a breeze washing over wheat. The elders greeted the crowd and led them in singing their tribal anthem, “Heleluyvn,” following which the crowd erupted again in anticipation of the great warrior’s arrival.

Elly Hays is available at Amazon

Back in the USA!

Hi everyone! I’ve miss you all so much and will hop around the next week and catch up. I have been working out of town for the last eight weeks and completely out of the country for the last five. I have one thing to say about the experience: Satellite Internet is for the birds!

So, now that I’m back, here are the highlights from my last eight weeks: I’ve been working on a ship and going back and forth to Bermuda which is a lovely place. I passed the Statue of Liberty a dozen times. I watched 4th of July fireworks from a UK territory (Thought that was funny!). I had chefs and housekeepers take care of me so much that I admit I’m lazy now and a few pounds heavier. I missed my pets and my trophy hubby more than words can say. I met amazing people from all over the world and now have new and fabulous friends who have invited me to wonderful places like Honolulu and Barcelona. I lost my luggage only once (Deltas fault, not mine). In my downtime, which was constant, I finished the rough draft of my next novel “Elly Hays” and hope to release it in October.

That’s about it. Here are photos:

Oh, look, there’s the Statue of Liberty…again

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My floating office

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Bermuda’s Horseshoe Bay

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I visited a lot of historical sites. This is St. Peter’s Church in St. George, Bermuda. It was built in 1602.

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…and the Maritime Museum at Heritage Wharf. Those stone walls don’t look that big, but they were over 20 feet high.

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My job

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My desk

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