Resonant Bodies

S2021 E6 | FULL EPISODE

Ted Hearne

Ted Hearne presents a new song cycle set to Dorothea Lasky’s poetry collection, “AWE.” Hearne leads on vocals and is joined by cellist Ashley Bathgate, keyboardist Nathan Koci, guitarist Taylor Levine, violist Diana Wade and drummer Ron Wiltrout.

AIRED: July 14, 2021 | 0:28:45
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TRANSCRIPT

[ Vocalizing ]

[ Voice distorted ] ♪ It's very hard

Woman: The voice is such a unique instrument.

It is located in this place in your body

where you have your heart below it,

you have your brain above it.

[ Piano playing, man vocalizing ]

Only the sound of the voice, I think,

can really go to those deep emotional places.

And when we hear that, there can be a greater compassion

and understanding and community around the world.

[ Vocalizing ]

♪♪

[ Vocalizing ]

You know, I think that for me, music is so powerful

as an adjacency to language, you know,

because it's like...

because it has all of this information

and it just accesses this really deep part of people

but is not specific at all.

And, I mean, even when it's extremely specific,

it doesn't have the specificity of language, you know?

And I want to be part of music because I want to, like,

put the music and the language next to each other, you know?

I've been a huge fan of "Resident Bodies"

for a long time, so the opportunity to perform it all

on this incredible series is really wonderful.

But it came at a perfect time for me,

because I've been developing this piece

that's really personal for me,

setting the poetry of Dorothea Lasky in a large set.

It's a piece that was commissioned by Carnegie Hall

and the Walker Museum in Minneapolis.

And Dorothea Lasky is an incredible American poet

who is from Missouri and now lives in New York.

And I was just immediately drawn to her work

because of the simplicity of the language and because of the --

I don't know --

the directness of the themes that she approaches.

It just really, really rang true for me.

And also I think that a lot of her poetry speaks to the idea --

You know, it's a simple idea

but just, like, really trusting the inner voice,

trusting the wildness that you have within you,

and finding a way to let that spirit overgrow

on top of all the frames that you've constructed for yourself.

So all of her poetry is full of just this imagery

of overgrowth and wildness.

But she uses, like, the simplest words,

and it reads like song lyrics a lot of the time.

A lot of her poems do.

And then just one word will throw it into this, like --

throw a wrench into it

and create all of these other contexts.

And it's just super brilliant.

So for me, that poetry really just set me on fire,

and I was like, "I want to write this."

And I think I'm setting like 12 or 13 songs for this overall.

♪ Frozen in time

[ Cheers and applause ]

[ Vocalizing ]

[ Electric guitar playing, feedback echoing ]

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ In your mouth

♪ The soul gapes out

♪ The dogs gape out

♪ The men eat grapes

♪ In your rib

♪ A bird looks out

[ Vocalizing ]

♪ The bird is an airbird

♪ Scratch its head

♪ It is holy

[ Vocalizing ]

♪ In your mouth

♪ The soul gapes out

♪ The dogs gape out

♪ The men eat grapes

♪ In your rib

♪ A bird looks out

[ Vocalizing ]

♪ The bird is an airbird

♪ Scratch its head

♪ It is holy

[ Vocalizing ]

[ Cheers and applause ]

Thank you.

[ Cheers and applause continue ]

[ Vocalizing ]

Thank you so much. I'm Ted Hearne.

I'm so happy to be here,

here with my wonderful band of friends --

Taylor Levine, Diana Wade, Ron Wiltrout,

Ashley Bathgate behind me, Nathan Koci.

[ Cheers and applause ]

[ Vocalizing ]

I'm so happy to be here because this is the first time

that we are playing this collection of music

and it's a part of a larger project that I'm working on,

setting the texts of the American poet Dorothea Lasky.

So all of these... [ Cheers and applause ]

Yes. Dorothy Lasky. And she's here.

[ Vocalizing ]

And so all of these texts come from -- come from her.

And we're going to be premiering this piece

at the Walker Museum in Minneapolis in November.

[ Drum beating softly ]

♪♪

♪♪

[ Other instruments join ]

♪♪

♪ I am sick of feeling

♪♪

♪ I never eat or sleep

♪♪

♪ I just sit here and let the words ♪

♪ Burn into me

♪♪

♪ I know you love her

♪♪

♪ And don't love me

♪♪

♪ No, I don't think you love her ♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ I know there are clouds that are very pretty ♪

♪♪

♪ I know there are clouds that trundle round the globe ♪

♪♪

♪ I take anything I can to get to love ♪

♪♪

♪ Live things are what the world is made of ♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ Live things are black

♪♪

♪ Black in that they forgot where they came from ♪

♪♪

♪ I have not forgotten, however I choose not to feel ♪

♪♪

♪ These places

♪ That have burned into me

♪♪

♪ There is too much burning here ♪

♪ I'm afraid

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ You read flat words

♪♪

♪ Inside here are many moments

♪♪

♪ In which I have screamed in pain ♪

♪♪

♪ As the flames ate me

[ Vocalizing ]

[ Cheers and applause ]

[ Vocalizing ]

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ Everyone keeps me

♪ From my destiny

♪♪

♪ Keeps me from it

♪ And keeps me locked away from beauty ♪

♪ And they can't feel my beauty ♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ Everyone keeps me

♪ From my destiny

♪♪

♪ Keeps me from it

♪ And keeps me locked away from beauty ♪

♪ And they can't feel my beauty ♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ In me reaching out

♪ Like glass into itself

♪ In me reaching out

♪ Like glass into itself

♪ And then into glass

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ Everyone keeps me from myself ♪

♪ 'Cause the self they had imagined ♪

♪ Was flesh and bone

♪ And this flesh I am is glass ♪

♪♪

♪ And this flesh I am is glass ♪

♪♪

♪ And everyone keeps me from my genius ♪

♪♪

♪ Because genius is not human

♪ And everyone keeps me from my genius ♪

♪ Because genius is not human

♪ And everyone wants me to be human ♪

♪♪

♪ But I am not human

♪ Everyone expects me to be something they are ♪

♪ Which is human

♪ And I can't be anything they are ♪

♪♪

♪ Which is human

♪♪

♪ Because I

♪ Am not human

♪ And they are

♪ And I am not human

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪ You are beautiful

♪ But you are also heartbreak

♪♪

♪ Locked forever

♪ Frozen in time

♪♪

♪ A cry I cannot get out

♪ No matter how much I grease myself ♪

♪♪

♪ With honey

♪ Pink palette of grapefruit

♪♪

♪ The book on the shoulder of the room ♪

♪♪

♪ The rose gardens

♪ But I do not want you to be so ♪

♪ But I do not want you to be so ♪

♪ You're beautiful

♪ But you are also heartbreak

♪♪

♪ Locked forever

♪ Frozen in time

♪♪

♪ I want to be spilling forth

♪ With the acid yellow honey of the bees ♪

♪ O love, take me thusforth

♪ Into your secret places

♪ I will never travel

♪ I will never wake

♪ You are more than heartbreak

♪♪

♪♪

♪ In your fanciful suits and closing sighs ♪

♪ You are more than the shining blue room ♪

♪ On the afternoon of the date, the cold bite ♪

♪ You are the hot breath too

♪ I take myself into

♪ The hot red fruit I take myself into ♪

♪ The living, breathing thing I take in, I want to ♪

♪ Be a watery nymph in a wooded grove ♪

♪ With you

♪ I want to be a cloud so full of honey ♪

♪ That there is nothing left of me ♪

♪ Until I throw myself into the fire ♪

♪ And am contained forever

♪♪

♪ I will be contained forever

♪ A thing of beauty

♪ Forever

♪ Oh, I will be that thing

♪ I will be that thing forever ♪

♪ I don't want to be beautiful with you ♪

♪ I don't want to be beautiful with you ♪

♪ I want to be an ugly, wretched, bleeding thing ♪

♪ Poring out on the windmills

♪ I want to be the locked tiger they can't lock up ♪

♪ I want to be the locked tiger they can't lock up ♪

♪ Until it murders and then rages through the fields ♪

♪ Of wild grasses

♪ I want to be so wild they can't lock me up ♪

♪ I want to be so wild they can't lock me up ♪

♪ Put fences around me to pen me in ♪

♪ I want to be so full of fire ♪

♪ That they won't be able to extinguish me ♪

♪ Until the beauty comes

♪ I want to be so full of fire

♪ That they can't tell me from you, my wretched angel ♪

♪ Sweet animal

♪ They locked us in this life ♪

♪ But I think we still have time ♪

♪ They locked us in this life ♪

♪ But I think we still have time ♪

♪♪

♪ But I think we still have time ♪

♪♪

♪ Before we have to get out of it ♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

[ Voice distorted ] ♪ If

♪ You

♪ Do

♪ Have

♪ A heart

♪♪

♪ If

♪ You

♪ Do

♪ Have

♪ A heart

♪♪

♪ Well, then

♪ It's very hard for me to see it ♪

♪♪

[ Echoing ] ♪ If

♪ You

♪ Do

♪ Have

♪ A heart

♪♪

♪ If

♪ You

♪ Do

♪ Have

♪ A heart

♪ Well, then

♪ It's very hard for me to see it ♪

♪♪

♪ And my heart is bursting forth ♪

♪ Like a bursting flower

♪♪

♪♪

♪ My

♪ Friend's

♪ Heart

♪ Is

♪ Perfumed

♪ I eat

♪ Her heart

♪ With care

♪ I eat

♪ The world

♪♪

♪ Lovingly too

♪ But you

♪ But you

♪ Your heart

♪ Is pity

♪ And has no edge

♪ And your heart

♪ I place on platters

♪ It multiplies

♪♪

♪♪

♪ And your heart

♪ I dine on with

♪ My children

♪ And we

♪ Laugh at you

♪ Your little scowl

♪♪

♪ Is now marked

♪♪

♪ For the great urgency

♪ Of this world

♪♪

♪♪

[ Music stops ]

[ Cheers and applause ]

[ Vocalizing ]

[ Cheers and applause continue ]

[ Vocalizing ]

♪♪

♪♪

♪♪

[ Vocalizing ]

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