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Discovering music that moves

As I was driving my children home from a family gathering recently,  I decided to pop in one of my seldom-heard-lately but favorite music CDs:  "Standing in the Safety Zone" by The Fairfield Four.

I like all kinds of music (much to the chagrin of my hip husband who likes to hide my "Sound of Music" CD when guests come over for dinner).   The Fairfield Four is an old-school gospel group that has been in existence in one form or another for over 80 years.  If you are a fan of traditional American music, you should give their acapella gospel harmonies a listen.  I first bought the CD because I fell in love with the men on the cover, wearing an engaging combination of over-alls and tuxedos (don't you love it?):

Fairfield Four

Listening to this CD brought back a wonderful memory for me.

A few years ago, I was working through my long list of "to dos" as I prepared to sell my home in Richmond, Virginia for our move to Boston.  We had hired a lovely gentleman, Mr. Eldredge, to do some painting to spruce the place up a bit. One day he and I were working side by side.  As he painted the front door, I was nearby feverishly trying to remove small handprints and dried play-doh from our living room shelves before the first potential buyers arrived.  I put in my Fairfield Four CD for a little background music.

And then, the "ta-da" moment:   Mr. Eldredge started to sing along in the type of baritone voice that makes you stop in your tracks and take pause.  I couldn't believe it!  Not only did he know my music -- but he sang as if he loved it.  At the song's end, I said:

"Why, Mr. Eldredge, you know that song.   You sound wonderful!"

His reply:

"Well, now, you know I do love that song.  I believe I sang that one at the White House for President Clinton.  Or maybe  it was the first President Bush..."

Yippee!  I felt as though I'd won the lottery.  I asked him to put down his paint brush and tell me all about it.  It turned out he was part of an elite group of singers who has sung for many a president.  And here he was in my presence.  Painting my front door and singing a song I cherished.  I wanted to capture this moment in a box and carry it around with me to remind me what happiness feels like when I need a lift.

Sometimes music transcends.  More often, people do.  Have you had a moment like this -- when you realized one of your "discoveries" was loved by someone else?  Music or not, we'd love to hear about it.


  • Amy Says:

    The thing I love about this recession is that it is making us all (and by that I mean me in particular!) focus on the basics and on what really matters: ah ha moments, other people, the kindness of strangers, sitting down to dinner with family to talk without the TV on the background because we cancelled the cable! (and other things like that)

    Thank you for sharing this!

  • Jana Says:

    What a wonderful story! I love that you took the time to listen and hear what Mr Eldredge had to say-- most of the time it seems like so many of us rush around and don't see what is right in front of us! It's a good reminder to try to do that! Love it and thank you for sharing!

  • schmutzie Says:

    I have to go find out more about them now, because they are called the "Fairfield Four", but there are FIVE of them in that pictures.

  • Barbara Says:

    Good catch! Sorta like another one of my faves from the 90s -- The Ben Folds Five, which had 3 members including my high school classmate Ben Folds.

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