In keeping with the Chimes’ song of water today, it’s fitting to share this piece. I wish so badly that I could find a clearer recording of it, but even in this recording, you can easily hear the water themes. The piece alternates between the refrains of “Wade in the water” and “God’s gonna trouble the water,” at times imitating a babbling brook, rising and falling waves, and ending as a roaring, raging river.
There is not enough space here to devote to composer Margaret Bonds (1913-1972), but she was a true groundbreaker. As an African-American female, she defied the odds by pursuing classical training in an era where formal music education was available to neither African-Americans nor women. She is known for her collaborations with poet Langston Hughes and soprano Leontyne Price and for her compositions which blended the Negro spiritual with European compositional traditions.
I continue to pray for those who lack water, both physically and spiritually. May we all be used to help quench their thirsts.
More on Margaret Bonds: