This blog is one of a series. Each includes one of the students’ final projects from my online course “Blues: Harp-Style” along with  their answers to five questions I asked them to answer. You can you should check out the story of her first performance of this Blues, below the video.

Watch & Comment at YouTube

Clarice didn’t answer my Five Questions (yet!), but here’s what she wrote about her experience creating this piece: 

I was so excited to have a live performance of my newly acquired blues skills to video for my final project.

I was creating an all-music service for my church and my new blues song fit perfectly. Improvising in music is creating a unique expression similar to the unique expression created in your life as you allow God to work through you.

Nothing like a live performance–and I was getting support with drums, guitar and an amazing piano player, plus they would all ?sing the chorus with me.

Perfect! Now the bad news. Unfortunately, the video camera-for no apparent reason-stopped recording before my performance-unbeknowst to us as my camera-man-husband was playing the drums.

He was absolutely distraught when he discovered it after the service. Oh well, at least I would have an audio copy as our services are all recorded.

Wouldn’t you know, it was the first day to use a new digital recording machine and the sound guy didn’t (or didn’t know how) to save and finalize the CD. No recording!! I couldn’t believe it!

So I came home and recorded it with Steve, my husband – just the two of us – and you’ll have to imagine the whole choir singing with me, the bass and the guitar, the standing ovation (yes, a standing ovation!) and all the incredible love that came pouring out to me from my church family through this song.  And maybe, if you sing along on the chorus and strum a little guitar while you listen you’ll get a sense of what it was like.


A Note from DHC:  Too often, these days, we forget that just because we don’t capture something in a photo, blog, video or audio, that we missed out somehow.  But the way you described that morning in church was wonderful, and better than any video could be and certainly something your congregation with never forget

I don’t see it as negative that the video/audio didn’t work.  I think it was meant to be something special and personal to each person in that congregation … maybe like each individuals personal relationship to their experience of God.

Bravo to your video-camera and digital audio for reminding us of that!

p.s. By the way, I always call Clara, “Clarice.”  When I first met her we were doing improve exercise using our names and I told everyone to choose the name they wanted at that moment.  Clara said “Clarice” and from that moment she’s always been “Clarice” to me!


The next “Blues: Harp-Style” course begins July 29th and runs through the end of August 2013.

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