'Heartlight' - A Musical Odyssey To me, heartlight is a warm, fuzzy presence, a source of love, beauty, and strength deep within each of us which sustains us during times of challenge and unites all of us in spirit. Upon hearing the serenity in the music of this CD, it is hard to believe that 12 of the 13 songs were born during a 20-year period of my life when I should have been out of touch with that warm, fuzzy presence. I was living by the seat of my pants, coping with trauma, pain, even danger. But in the midst of that chaos, I experienced incredible beauty, love, and miracles that kept me connected to my inner sustenance. And above all, music was my lifeline. I can't explain how I 'composed' these songs. I can only say that they came from my 'heartlight.' Some happened suddenly while I was getting out of a car or walking on a beach. Some were waiting beneath my fingers as I doodled on the keyboard. 'Together in the Light' emerged spontaneously right after a dear friend told me he was HIV positive. 'Plie,' 'Raindrops,' and 'The Gift' were my fingers' responses to seeing beautiful choreography while I was a dance accompanist. 'In the Center' was inspired by the sight of swaying branches reflected in a picture frame glass. 'Air for Kate' is for my dear niece, Kate Tague, whose beautiful young life was cut short by a drunk driver. I've been immersed in music all my life, thanks to my wacky, wonderful Irish relatives who sang together at every gathering, and were known to lie on the floor with the lights out to hear me play 'Clair de Lune.' They sang and laughed their way through triumphs and tribulations alike. And their voices were truly magical. This rich heritage was enhanced by the beauty I have experienced in deep New England forests; the beaches of Maine, Ireland, and California; quiet Missouri winters; the artistry of dance teachers; the compassion and playfulness of Hawaiian dolphins; the choir at Notre Dame Cathedral; the grace of my pet cats; and the art, photography, humor, and poetry of my loved ones. The music of 'Heartlight' is a gift to me from the unseen world. I joyfully share it with all who will listen, hoping that it will bring as much peace and healing to others as it has to me. 'Heartlight' is dedicated to all the lights of my life, especially Mom, Dad, Pa, Danny, Sarah, Bob and my warm and wonderful siblings, uncles, aunts, friends and dance and piano teachers who have nurtured my spirit and shared their love of music with me. Cover photography is by Sarah Joplin. Graphics are by Bob Reade. A brief 'musical biography': Age 3-19 Played piano by ear; studied sporadically with several piano teachers College years: Played show tunes and standards in restaurants during summer vacations After college: Married (my husband gave me a piano with a payment book for a wedding gift !) Served in Peace Corps (the only time in my life that I was without a piano) Joined Irish music jam session and visited ancestral home in Ireland Began teaching piano to children Worked as dance accompanist (ballet and modern) for three colleges Played in several restaurants and at weddings and other occasions Entertained in about 50 nursing homes; did music therapy in Alzheimer's Unit Played in five Irish bands Accompanied Irish tenor for 10 years in Irish restaurant Played on two Green Linnet International recordings and at Harvard University's Black Sheep Music Festival Founded Clifford-Hoban branch of CCE (International Irish Music, Dance, and Language Association Now: Retired from 'day jobs' to devote more time to producing and sharing CDs !