Today I heard a striking choral work on WNED, but I missed the piece’s introduction. I’m old enough to remember when this kind of thing was a pain! If you heard a song or piece but you missed the radio personality’s intro, you had to wonder what the song was and hope to hear it again. Nowadays, with WNED, I can go to the station’s website and look at their playlist to figure out what I heard…or I can actually hold my phone up to the speaker and let it listen to the piece and try to identify it. This works a surprising amount of the time. Yes, I’m still vexed that we don’t have moonbases and giant spaceships under construction to launch Phase One of our colonization of Mars, but a device in my pocket that can (among other things) identify music? Now that is something.
The piece was “i carry your heart” by Eric Whitacre. It’s a setting of a poem by e.e. cummings, whose birthday it is today, which I suppose is the “hook” that WNED cited to play the piece. You can read cummings’s poem here (I would reproduce it here directly, but it’s cummings, which means that the typography is important and I don’t want to screw it up), and the ever-brilliant Sheila O’Malley has a big post about cummings here.
And here is “i carry your heart” by Eric Whitacre. It’s quite a wonderful piece, at times evocative of plainchant or a medieval madrigal.