I’ve had a few health issues over the past couple of years – I won’t bore you withal the details, but I ended up saying to my GP;
“My right hand doesn’t let me play the piano or the organ, my left shoulder won’t let me play the cello or double bass and I’ve lost my voice so I can’t sing. I’m a musician – what am I supposed to do?”
“Compose something for ME to sing!” was her reply!
Emma sings with “Tarantara”, a superb choir based in Stratford on Avon which sings in a wide range of styles and genres, and whose members are obviously having a whale of a time when they perform. It is conducted by Jonathan Hill, who was a colleague of mine 30 odd years ago when he was Head of Music in one of the 13 schools where I taught cello.
So I did just that. I thought about it for a while, searching for some suitable lyrics, and then asked her if she had anything in mind. She suggested a poem which she and husband, Garry, had chosen to have as a reading at their wedding.
“What is a Soul Mate?”
If you have found a smile that is the sweetest one you’ve known,
If you have heard, within a voice, the echoes of your own,
If you have felt a touch that stirs the longings of your heart,
And still can feel that closeness in the moments you’re apart,
If you have filled with wonder at the way two lives can blend
To weave a perfect pattern that is seamless, end to end,
If you believe some things in life are simply meant to be,
Then you have found your soul mate, your heart’s own destiny.
I could hear Emma singing it in my head almost immediately and set to work. In October last year it was done and ready and I took her a copy straight away along with a recording of my daughter, Marianne, who has a similar voice, singing it for her. Emma loved it and Garry was very moved.
Last night, 19th October 2013, Emma performed it for the first time at a Tarantara concert in Stratford Methodist Church and I was privileged to be asked to accompany her.
I would love to make this song available from my website but my dilemma is that I cannot find out who Emily Matthews is to know whether the words are in copyright. The poem is available all over the internet in various websites, always giving credit to the writer but never with a copyright sign. Can anybody tell me whether I can publish my setting of her words legally?