"Heaven's Hues" was conceived many decades ago. It comes from a book entitled "God Calling" (edited by A.J. Russell) written by two women from England who chose to be known only as "Two Listeners". I have read and re-read God Calling for many years and turn to it often for its simplicity and beauty. It is a daily devotional and two of the tracks come from the November 11th entry entitled "Heaven's Colours".
"Looking back you will see that every step was planned. Leave all to Me. Each stone in the mosaic fits into the perfect pattern, designed by the Master Artist.
It is all so wonderful! But the colours are of Heaven's hues, so that your eyes could not bear to gaze on the whole, until you are beyond the veil. So, stone by stone, you see, and trust the pattern to the Designer."
Again, I have read this book on and off for a very long time. I gave several copies away to people but it didn't seem to have the same effect on them as it had on me. Its words are imprinted on my soul, as it were, and oftentimes a phrase or sentiment comes to mind which helps me.
The cover art for "Heaven's Hues" is used with the kind permission of Patricia Shaw. This inspired painting is entitled "A Place to Hide" and is a favorite of mine amidst her many luminous and sensitive works. As with any prodigious talent, Patricia's affinity for artwork began in childhood. As she tells it, "I always had a pencil in my hand...and drew people all the time....I've always loved eyes!.... It wasn't until I trained to be a teacher that I began to paint and do illustrations for storybooks ...of course for young children!!! They helped when I told them stories...I also experimented with lots of different mediums!....I remember an art teacher saying "Do you always have to paint trees brown, which I thought was a funny thing to say...but now I know what she meant." Indeed. We are all the richer because of your artwork, Tricia.
Wanderlust is played in a dropped minor tuning on a five-octave acoustic harp. The running river sounds were digitally recorded with the Australian-made Rode NTG 2.0 shotgun condenser microphone. I recommend this mic whenever I can. 24-bit mastering was used here and captured at 48000 Hz on a Tascam DR-100 portable digital recorder in WAV format. Near the end of this recording session, a pair of Canadian geese descended off the river flyway and nearly flew into me. Apparently, they wanted to be included on this recording.
This Everyday Life is played in a dropped major tuning and captures an ordinary, animated day.
Beyond the Veil was an interesting case. Originally, I recorded it for an upcoming guitar album, but felt that it fit better here. It seems to serve dual purposes: To point to the quote from God Calling mentioned above, and to provide a romantic, flamenco-influenced melody. A slow dance, if you will. It was mastered in MP3 format at 320 Kbps using an acoustic harp pick-up manufactured by Dusty Strings in Seattle, Washington. No microphone was used, and Beyond the Veil was recorded in a dropped minor tuning. Running river sounds were recorded locally in the early morning hours in mid April.
Heaven's Hues is a favorite track of mine, and thus, is the title track.
All melodies were recorded on the first take and little or no editing was used.
God Calling, edited by A.J. Russell, can be found in any major bookstore or online.