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The Grateful Dead: Ripple

(Taking a distance from the kitsch of Father’s Day and the Acropolis Museum inauguration.)

If my words did glow with the gold of sunshine/And my tunes were played on the harp unstrung,/Would you hear my voice come through the music,/Would you hold it near as it were your own?

It’s a hand-me-down, the thoughts are broken,/Perhaps they’re better left unsung./I don’t know, don’t really care/Let there be songs to fill the air.

Ripple in still water,/When there is no pebble tossed,/Nor wind to blow.

Reach out your hand if your cup be empty,/If your cup is full may it be again,/Let it be known there is a fountain,/That was not made by the hands of men.

There is a road, no simple highway,/Between the dawn and the dark of night,/And if you go no one may follow,/That path is for your steps alone.

Ripple in still water,/When there is no pebble tossed,/Nor wind to blow.

But if you fall you fall alone,/If you should stand then who’s to guide you?/If I knew the way I would take you home.

Dennis Brain plays Beethoven’s Horn Sonata in F Op.17

Brain was notoriously careless, his instrument for many years was a French-made piston valve horn with an impressive array of dents, and Britten autographed one score “For Dennis – in case he loses the other one”.

On September 1, 1957, Brain was driving home to London after performing at the Edinburgh Festival with his wind quintet when he was killed in a car accident near Barnet in his Triumph TR2 sports car. Brain was a noted enthusiast of fast cars and was known for keeping Autocar magazine on his stand as he played the Mozart concertos from memory during recording sessions. He was 36 years old at the time of his death.

His headstone is engraved with a passage from Hindemith’s Declamation section from his horn concerto:

My call transforms
The hall to autumn-
tinted groves
What is into what
Has been….

*Recommended: Brain [ORIGINAL RECORDING REMASTERED] / Works by Ludwig van Beethoven, Johannes Brahms, Paul Dukas, Marin Marais, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart by the, Dennis Brain Wind Ensemble and Dennis Brain.

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(For @boybloom =)