Let Me Be Strong


I was riding my bike home in the rain this week and remembered a song written by a New England author and songwriter named Barbara Baig.

“Rain beats at the window as I stare into the night…”

I recorded it a while ago with Doug Hammer playing piano — and, I think, Chris Rathbun on upright bass and Gene Roma on drums — at Doug’s Dreamworld Studios on the North Shore.

That was when I was hosting a performance series in Harvard Square called “Will & Company.”

Each show featured a local songwriter and a local singer about whom I was excited.

I recently learned that one of the songwriters, Ernie Lijoi, has written lyrics for two songs in a musical called It Shoulda Been You which is opening on Broadway at the Brooks Atkinson Theater in April of 2015 starring Tyne Daly and directed by David Hyde Pierce.

Go, Ernie!

“Let me be strong and moving through fear….”

One of our friends, Peter Watson, has used “Let Me Be Strong” in the Opening the Heart workshops he co-leads.

Although a lot — a blessed lot — of stuff is going well in my life these days (a devoted life partner, robust Music Together classes, more performances at retirement communities and libraries, basic health, no debt, a functional bike, a wonderful web of family and friends for whom I am very grateful, and the list goes on and on), I also find myself standing from time to time in deep puddles of fear.

And I berate myself for feeling scared — aware that billions of beings on planet earth are not as fortunate as I am.

What do I have to feel scared about?

Yet I am also aware — without reading the paper, listening to the radio, watching the news, or tapping into various social media — that our human population continues to climb, that more and more species of animals and plants are becoming extinct, that our economic models are based on an advertising-created desire to possess more and more things, etc. etc. etc.

Thinking about these global challenges leaves me feeling scared, or sad, or angry — or all of the above.

How do we not become mired in fear?

How do we keep our hearts open?

How do we change our lives to respect and honor and nurture the amazing web of life currently unraveling on planet earth?

And how does music fit into any/all of the above?

4 thoughts on “Let Me Be Strong

  1. Often the thing we think is scaring us, logical as it is to suspect it, is not the real thing. Wish I could help. The song was beautiful. And on a light note: In childhood Tyne Daly and I were in two shows together. HMS Pinafore and a locally written musical. Perhaps I will get to see her in your friend’s show in NYC.

    • What a cool history to share with Tyne Daly! I hope her new musical project comes to fruition. I’ve been ready Arthur Laurents’ autobiographies, which are a vivid reminder that the creative process can be a long and winding road — in addition to the challenge of how to finance/produce a Broadway show…

    • In February I stumbled over an enthusiastic 18-month-old music student who popped up unexpectedly behind me during one of my Music Together classes — and in the process of avoiding a fall on him, I landed on my left elbow and shattered the bottom plane of my humerus. So I’ve been out of commission for many weeks…. But I hope to resume blogging before too long. Thanks for your SWEET encouragement, suzannesmom!

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