Grammy nominated singer-songwriter and composer Celeste Friedman delivers an eclectic journey of originals in tribute to the countless pilgrims who have crossed the five-hundred mile trek to the Cathedral de Compostela. For over one thousand years, it has been believed to be the final resting place of the apostle Saint James.
Friedman closes her eyes and imagines, sensing the angels everywhere. The Holy Spirit is her guide along the winding, rocky path, where she reveals in the title track that she carries all of her dreams and sins, a heavy load.
Haunting, mesmerizing and hypnotic best describes Friedman's compositions, lifting a veil on struggles with faith.
In search of strength and guidance, Friedman features singles such as, "Searching"; "Forgiveness"; "White Butterfly" and "The Meaning of Life". Challenged by a crippling disease since her mid-thirties, Celeste tells the story of tolerance of pain and tests of patience and acceptance in "Running with Scissors". Reflecting on the snowy descent in the mountains, she includes her ballad, "The Trees are Bare" and a traditional Irish piece, "The Snows They Melt the Soonest". In "Oranges", she unravels the desire for happiness and simplicity, while still passionately feeding the fire in her soul.
Instrumental compositions include works which have been featured in television and film, such as "Secret Land"; "The Alchemist"; "La Rose Rouge" and "O Dominus". The entire collection is a tapestry weaving jazz, Latin, Celtic, contemporary pop and orchestral styles.
"The Road to Santiago" title track refers to the scallop shell in the lyrics. Metaphorically, the shell, often found on the shores of Galicia, has long been a symbol of the pilgrimage routes, where the grooves in the shell come together at one single point. The journey to Santiago de Compostela was one of the most important Christian pilgrimages in medieval times. Today, common starting points are Paris, France or the town of Le Puy. Some claim to experience a holy transformation of the soul and believe to discover a new understanding of life, death and one's relationship with God.
The Road to Santiago de Compostela
Countless individuals have made the pilgrimage route to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. A five-hundred mile trek across Spain over the Pyrenees Mountains and rugged terrain. The trail is fickle, from smooth sand or grass to rocks and ridges. Many believe it to be a spiritual transformation and powerful challenge of faith.
Having not yet taken the journey myself, I close my eyes and imagine. I can feel the angels all around me. The meseta beckons, as the mountains slowly rise behind. The endless vineyards along the way are an elixir for the soul. As I near my celestial destination, I descend through a forest in the snow. Peering through a veil of sweet persuasion, the moon lights my way, the way of Saint James.
Since the late 1990’s, I have been intrigued and influenced by pilgrims who have travelled the ancient roads to Lourdes, Rome and Santiago de Compostela. I have followed the writings of those who achieved their journey, such as Paulo Coelho, Jennifer Lash and Margery Kempe.
In 2010, The Way of St. James, inspired my songwriting, including the songs , “The Road to Santiago”; “Searching”; “Sobreviva” and more. Now, in 2016, I have to say that I have never been inspired more as I am by Justin Skeesuck and Patrick Gray. You can follow their story at: IllPushYou-dot-com.
Songs for Charlie Music is proud to announce that each sale of Celeste’s CD, “The Road to Santiago” is playing an important role to support the courage and dreams of those who take and make the journey. Throughout 2016-2017, 50% of the proceeds will be donated to I’ll Push You and 50% will fund Celeste’s future trek of the 500 rugged miles to Santiago in Spain.
Listen to audio samples and download single tracks or complete album here on CDBaby.
“Peering through a veil of sweet persuasion, the moon lights the way of St. James”.
Espiritu Santo mi guia . . . Celeste