No Song is Safe From Us

No Song Is Safe From Us - The NYFOS Blog
 |  Steven Blier

The first day of a project is always fraught with excitement and fear and questions—how prepared will everyone be? Is this program any good? Will all my practicing hang in there in the heat of the moment, or am I going to be a total klutz? But this year’s NYFOS@North Fork residency had more unknowns than usual because I’d hired two people I didn’t really know.




 |  Joseph Kaiser

The one and only time I’ve ever enjoyed (let alone paid attention to) NYC taxi cab t.v. was I saw a clip of this song last December. “On the outside, always looking in, will I ever be more than I’ve always been?” As artists, we’ve all felt these feelings, to one degree or another. If I could go back in time, and perform a role in musical theater, Evan Hansen would be my choice.




 |  Joseph Kaiser

With all due respect to the song I was planning to post, Alison Krauss’ beautiful rendition of the Beatles “I Will,” I felt compelled to instead share Marvin Gaye’s 1971 chart-topper, due to the events of this past week (and month, and year…).




 |  Joseph Kaiser

I’ve now spent equal time on this planet with my father as I have without him. I don’t even know if he liked this song. But since he’s been gone, these lyrics have always reminded me of his tenderness, his love of music, and his unfulfilled dreams.




 |  Joseph Kaiser

In my 9th grade English class, all of the students had to memorize a Shakespearean sonnet. I chose “Like as the waves make towards the pebbl’d shores,” but only because another student had already chosen “My mistress’ eyes.” Alan Rickman—whom I first encountered in Galaxy Quest—delivers his stirring rendition with gravitas and subtle passion.




 |  Joshua Blue

A remix of Beyonce, and Kendrick Lamar’s “Freedom” this piece is filled with references to the Black Lives Matter movement as well as actual video content from many of the murders and assaults on people of color from the past few years. The work is combined with Jesse Williams’ incredibly powerful BET Awards speech about cultural appropriation.




 |  Joshua Blue

Written under his “Blood Orange” moniker, Devonte Hynes wrote this piece as a collection of his thoughts, a delve into the life, and mind, of a person of color in the modern world. Racial profiling, murder, stereotyping, all things that people of color face daily. It is less of a song, and more of a stream of consciousness set to music.




 |  Joshua Blue

Finding himself deeply affected by the death of Freddie Gray (April 19, 2015 – Baltimore, Maryland), Prince wrote this tribute song. Mentioning both Michael Brown and Freddie Gray, the piece is a reflection on the violence that spread through the country in the past few years from unjust killings. The piece ends with a direct quote from Prince: “The system is broken. It’s going to take the young people to fix it this time. We need new ideas, new life…”




 |  Joshua Blue

Set to the tune of “My Favorite Things” from The Sound of Music, “Black Rage” was a reprisal, brought back shortly after the shooting of Michael Brown (August 9, 2014 – Ferguson, Missouri). The piece looks at the atrocities the African American community has faced for years and how this hatred can take us into dark places.