Peace, PlaceFall 2012 Music
Veteran indie folk musician Peter Siegel and more than three hundred K to 5 students at the New Hampshire-based Symonds School-a public school dedicated to "learning, collaboration, peace and justice"-sing songs of unity, empathy and recognition of the interconnectedness of all living things. The tone is never heavy and Siegel, a music teacher at the school, has a particularly appealing baritone and quiet clarity that never overpowers the engaging and endearing child singers who put their hearts into every song they sing. The well-chosen selections are nicely balanced: Siegel's rendition of Bob Blue's "Pineapple Rag" is a hoot. "Hazrat Bibi Maryum," the traditional Sufi song that follows and is sung by the children a capella, is hauntingly beautiful. At his website, Siegel writes that "the sense of empowerment that a child or adult feels when participating in a dance, a group song, a drum circle, a band, and orchestra translates to empowerment in life."