I often say that I’m not much on religion, and that’s true, but I’m not without belief. I have a deep abiding faith in good. I believe that good is everywhere. Unfortunately, it is not the good things that people do, but the bad that gets all of the headlines.
‘The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interrèd with their bones.” Anthony at the funeral of Julius Caeser
Somehow, that overshadowing makes it hard to explain a faith in goodness.
It becomes especially hard to explain a belief in good when you belong to a church that is without dogma; that believes that doing good is just the right thing to do.
I play guitar music for our Unitarian Universalist fellowship. I look hard for inspirational music that doesn’t depend on a deity for inspiration. I play out of chord structures by ear. Playing classical music, which requires sight reading, is no longer available to me because of my poor vision.
Some of the very best inspirational music is gospel music. Gospel music, black or white makes you want to get up and say, “Holy, yes!”
My deepest love is of Jazz, but I can't play that, and I love playing the Blues.
“The Blues are secular Spirituals, or as T-Bone Walker put it, ‘The Blues are just Gospel turned inside out.’ “
Riverwalk Jazz, Stanford University
In the past blues music has often been characterized by Christian ministers as “the Devil’s music.” It touched the same place in the heart as gospel, but existed outside of church.
I believe that I heard B.B. King talk about how he came to play the blues. He was a gospel musician and everyone told him that he could make a living playing gospel. So, he took his guitar, went to town, took out his guitar and began playing with his open guitar case out for tips.
Lots of people came by and told him that his playing was beautiful. However, they were putting tips in the case of the blues musician across the street. So, according to B.B. he said, “Lord, you’re just going to have to forgive me.”
So, I went on-line looking for Unitarian Blues. I found a U.U. Blues video. It was a little rough, but the guitarist/singer and piano player were in sync and obviously enjoying the moment. I couldn’t understand any of the lyrics.
While I was thinking about where to go next – maybe go look for the lyrics – the following video came up. YouTube does that now. It just starts playing another video that may be what you are looking for. Usually, it is just an irritation, but not this time.
The next video didn’t have to do with the Blues, but it talked a lot about where good comes from. This pastor’s experience and message said perfectly what I struggle to say when others ask me about my faith.
I hope you enjoy the video, and if you know any “church blues” let me know!