A tribute to a lovely lady

Some years ago, we lived in Scotland and Colin ran a very successful piano teaching practice.

One of his long time students contacted us recently with the very sad news that his beloved wife had passed away in October 2018 after a long battle with lung cancer and advanced dementia.

He wrote some beautiful words and asked if we would compose some music and melody to go with his heartfelt lyrics.

We said ‘of course’ and set about the sad and sensitive task of putting his deeply personal words to music.

In January of this year we finally came up with what is hopefully a tasteful and poignant song to honour the memory of Alex’s beautiful wife, Sheila……

The song, at Alex’s request, is called ‘Dementia Love ….. Sheila’



Words by Alec Milne - dedicated to Sheila Milne - - - - Music by Paula and Colin Mitchell - VoicePiano

Your eyes say troubled, that once sparkled.

Your words of anguish were once of joy.

Your tears come from hurt, that started with love.

Your love hasn't gone - it's lost it's way.

Your body so strong now needs another's strength.

Your thoughts once true are now confused.

The life you gave, you now need some back.

Your love hasn't gone - it's lost it's way.

The memories you made are all mine now.

Some I'll share and many are already shared with others you've blessed.

Others are ours my love

And are cherished deep within.

Will be ours for all of time.

I thank you for that gift.

Past times good are still good now.

The love you laid supports us all.

The memories made, never fade or lose their cheer.

Your love hasn't gone - it's still in here.

We thank you now for everything that you gave.

The love to all - the strength each day.

We know that you're in there but hiding now.

To reappear as we once knew.

Your love hasn't gone - it's just lost its way.

The memories you made are all mine now.

Some I'll share and many are already shared with others you've blessed.

Others are ours my love - And are cherished deep within.

Will be ours for all of time.

And I thank you for that gift.

You've lived - you've laughed.

You've loved, you've shared, you've cared.

You've dared, you've cried.

You've sighed but always tried.

You've suffered and overcome.

You've danced and overwhelmed.

The memories you made are all mine now.

Some I'll share and many are already shared with others you've blessed.

Others are ours my love - And are cherished deep within.

Will be ours for all of time.

And I thank you for that gift.

1 year since my voice op - Update from Paula

I can’t believe it’s been a whole year since I had surgery on my vocal cords! It’s been a tough year in other areas but even now, one year on, I’m thankful every day and in awe of how beautifully my voice works!

I had a polyp removed from one of my vocal cords by an amazing human being and voice consultant, Mr Declan Costello. I cannot express my gratitude enough to this man who literally saved my life. As a singer, there is nothing, and I mean NOTHING worse than not being able to sing.

This time last year I was banished to silence and communicating only via a pad and pen or a whiteboard. I had to endure 6 whole weeks of complete voice rest - no sounds at all! Colin was completely cock-a-hoop of course lol. He was so thrilled that I couldn’t answer back and used it to it’s full advantage.

When I first started using my voice again the pitch of my speech was much higher than normal and it stayed like that for a few months, but then it started to settle down to it’s ‘normal’ pitch, which is a bit lower. As for singing, I discovered that there was nothing that I couldn’t sing - no note that couldn’t be reached. It was exhilarating and exciting! I even recorded a classical piece by Mendelssohn which I hadn’t sung since school! I recorded all three vocal parts of ‘Lift Thine Eyes’ from Elijah. (You can listen here)

It made me realise what an integral part of my body and soul my voice is, and I understand now, that if I can’t sing then why am I here? It’s who I am and what I do and I want to share it with you. We all have gifts and the best thing is to share them with others and that’s what I intend to do!

Moving forward, we are now working on three new tracks towards the album. We’re planning on releasing it this year some time.

Watch this space…….

This is my Happy face :-D

This is my Happy face :-D

The new album - musings and observations from Paula....

Ok, so we've started on the second track for the album - it's going to be in the same kind of genre as the first track, In Our Space, but it'll be a bit more complex musically.  Colin has freed himself from the shackles of composing music to suit others and really let himself be led by his immense creative genius!

He played me his idea on his beautiful Steinway Grand (which is 112 years old and still sounds stunningly gorgeous - maybe we'll do another blog entirely dedicated to the piano lol...) and he was a bit sceptical that I would like it.  Huh!  As if !...    Surely he knows by now that everything that flows from his magical fingers is nectar to my ears..... 

Anyhoo....  I would say it has classical influences, with definite nods to the Yellowjackets - so very tasty indeed!   The vocals on this one will be very tight and close, using amazing jazz voicings and I can't wait for the challenge!  Bring it on!!  Nothing makes me happier, truly....

I've recorded him playing the piece on the piano as a starting point and I'm going to document each stage of the song as it always evolves and changes as you go along - it should be very interesting to compare the original rough piano version to the finished product.   We'll post that a bit later once it's done...

We've just changed over to a new desktop computer (one from this century...) and I'm currently in the process of getting my sticky paws on Pro Tools.  We have always used Cubase but I want a change and would like to try Pro Tools to see what the difference is....  There's nothing I enjoy more than spending hours and hours with DAWs - yeah, I'm weird I know, but I just don't care.... 

So, the next step?  Get Colin to lay down a rough version of the track onto Cubase (or Pro Tools...) and fill me in on which bits he wants vocals on.   

Will keep you posted......

Until next time - Adios Amigos and stay peaceful x x

Paula
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VoicePiano blend crossover jazz with multi layered ethereal vocals, for fans of Enya-esqe multi-tracked vocals and gorgeous piano music.

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