Songwriting From the Heart, From Israel

Songwriting From the Heart, From Israel

Aug 20

When I first started writing songs, my material was heavily weighted toward the subjects that occupied most of my time: my kids. I remember when I used to introduce my performance of “Survival of the Fittest” by telling audiences how this song was inspired the tri-partite split that characterized my life… the fact that I was (1) a singer-songwriter, (2) a science writer, and (3) the mother of four “what can euphemistically be referred to as ‘high-energy’ children.”

Well, they’re still high energy. But since they’re directing their energies outward these days, I’m a bit less overwhelmed. As a result, I’ve been able to explore new horizons.

Recently, I signed up for a seminar given by one of our local universities. The subject was “public diplomacy” – that face-to-face (or keyboard to keyboard) communication that makes it possible for average citizens to influence how their nation is perceived around the world. I won’t surprise anyone if I say that Israel is situated in a very volatile environment, and as a result, it faces very difficult challenges in terms of its public image. For years, my desire to defend Israel against unreasonable attacks in the media has been growing… but even the most effective “facebook activism” can only go so far.

Driving home after the seminar’s first meeting, my brain was on fire… and as sometimes happens in these situations, an idea for a song popped into my head. I pulled over to the side of the road and started scribbling, and the result was the lyric to “Song of Zion” – already recorded as part of the “Voices From the Other Side” album. “Freeze Frame Truth” – another Israel-related song – followed soon after.

You can read the lyrics to both songs on the Voices From the Other Side page in the Music section.

I don’t think I’m going to redefine myself as a political songwriter. But to the extent that I can use my art to create a little more understanding about the place I live, I’m happy to do so.