Tuesday, 24 March 2015

My favourite things. . .

This blog post is dedicated to +Anthony Faitaua 

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woollen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favourite things. . .

Julie Andrews is the governess or nanny I wish that I had growing up.  I'm also not ashamed to say that My favourite things is one of my go-to karaoke songs.  Why you might ask?  Because you wouldn't expect a well-built Samoan woman singing in a flawless English accent with an even more flawless soprano.  This particular track has brought the house down on many occasions not only because it's a firm favourite amongst those of us who were brought up on The Sound of Music (that title of the track itself I often used as a vocal warmup for school productions - the hiiiiiillls are aliiiiiive, in ascending semitones each time!) but because it's Julie Andrews for crying out loud!

Cream coloured ponies and crisp apple strudels
Door bells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings
These are a few of my favourite things

What are some of your favourite things?  Obviously the list of Fraulein Maria's list of favourite things is heavily influenced by her native Austria.  I can't help but notice that her list of favourite things have a lot to do with nature with the ponies and geese, as well as food with the strudels and schnitzel.

Girls in white dresses with blue satin dresses
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes
Silver white winters that melt into springs
These are a few of my favourite things

Obviously living in Austria, this verse talks alot about winter with all things white.  I can't also help but think that there is some secret reference here to the influence of Hitler's Germany with references to all things white (the Aryan race with blond hair, blue eyes and flawless white skin), although the white winters do eventually melt into springs.  My favourite line is the second line because of the reference to snowflakes and the way that Andrews sings this word in a sing song voice (sung speech) in the repeat.  The lyrics upon repeat experience a modulation, a key change.  Modulation is a great tool that composers like Rogers and Hammerstein use to create tension by raising the key higher for the vocalists to start showing their singing technique.

When the dog bites
When the bee stings
When I'm feeling sad
I simply my favourite things
And then I don't feel so bad. . . 

I hope that even when there are some pressure points in your life, that you think about the favourite things that you have going for you in your life, and then you won't feel so bad :-)