Dinah Washington + Max Richter ::: This Bitter Earth ||| On The Nature Of Daylight


Hello friends, today's Weekly Pick is a unique and extremely beautiful piece of music. It is one part touching composition and the other, the essence of a shared consciousness, a synchronicity, with the beauty that's around us always. I'll explain more on that in just a bit... 

"This Bitter Earth / On The Nature Of Daylight" is a remarkable mashup of post-minimalist German composer Max Richter and brilliant and soulful song-bird Dinah Washington. It contains the sweeping and powerful movement of the piece "On The Nature Of Daylight" from Richter and the incredible vocal tracks isolated and inserted from Washington's 1960 version of "This Bitter Earth," creating possibly one of the most powerful pieces of music I've come across in a long while.

Now, to expand on my shared consciousness a bit... I found this beautiful piece of music watching a fantastic documentary A Restless Creature (available on Netflix) based on New York City Ballet principle dancer, Wendy Whelan and her remarkable journey through her final stages of her career. I was so drawn to the music that I had to find what this treasure was. After a bit of research, I found it's actually the two separate songs "mashed-up" for the soundtrack of the Martin Scorsese film "Shutter Island." A venerable surprise to say the least! As I often do, I dug deeper and found that the composition was from Max Richter who created the immensely beautiful theme and soundtrack to the HBO series "The Leftovers." That show and it's music had an enormous impact on me, so much so that I was blown away by the synchronicity of this song being created by the same composer. I was completely drawn to this music set in a completely different genre, text and form --- it was the truest sign that if you listen, the universe will speak. If you're lucky enough to listen often, you'll be able to share in that consciousness that can be so full of pure and honest beauty.

This bitter earth
Well, what a fruit it bears
What good is love
Mmh, that no one shares?
And if my life is like the dust
Ooh, that hides the glow of a rose
What good am I?
Heaven only knows
Oh, this bitter earth
Yes, can it be so cold?
Today you’re young
Too soon you’re old
But while a voice
Within me cries
I’m sure someone
May answer my call
And this bitter earth, ooh
May not, oh be so bitter after all
— Clyde Lovern Otis / Dinah Washington

Lastly, I'll mention that this piece couldn't be more poignant or timely. In this current climate we live in that is so full of rage, hate and lack of understanding and empathy for each other. We are ALL in this together and can share in that shared beauty... we only have to listen.

Thank YOU for listening!