Jamie April Enews: Early Spring

Snowdrops and bluebells, primroses, daffodils
Will ring out loud bells, to welcome in the spring
(Maddie Prior)

Jamie O’Reilly
April Enews
March 30, 2024

Holy Week when I was young, during the Folk Mass era, was all about the music. It meant the Stations of the Cross experienced as the Living Stations, acted out in procession around the church. We sang Ride On, King Jesus, for Palm Sunday, listened to all of Jesus Christ Superstar on Good Friday, and Ye Sons and Daughters on Easter morning, and still sing songs from a three-part song cycle There Will Never Be Another Day Like Today and O, Happy Day, with the family.

When Michael Smith and I came up with the revue Songs of a Catholic Childhood,
I added The Holy City, as I remembered my parents singing in choirs, in a medley with him leading The Bells of St. Mary’s. When I listen to it today I still get chills.

We took the forty days of Lent seriously, and fasted from something – usually sugar – and ate fish on Fridays. For a kid from a big family without much cash, the Easter basket was a seasonal-high with its chocolate eggs and bunnies. In my married years, I made traditional breads, like Hot Cross Buns and the Russian Kulich (baked in a coffee can.) Now my tradition is making chocolate coconut nest candies, with jelly beans in the middle. We always dye eggs. Every year the pastel shades shift, with a brilliant blue, sunny yellow or subtle rose taking the lead in the tray when all the finished eggs are presented.

I tell my grandchildren about our traditions, the signs of spring, new life and the story of the Resurrection.

This year is special. We are waiting for a baby to come. As I write this, Nia and Casey’s little girl could come anytime. What more promise of hope is there?

Peace to you and yours, however you practice this holy week.
– Jamie

Jamie O’Reilly’s Roots Salon presents the May Day Salon: “Blue.” Featured Artist John Erickson, jazz piano. John accompanies Jamie on a spring mix of standards and ballads. Seasonal small plates and dessert menu. BYOB. Reserve a seat now.

April Chicago Arts Community Events

Jamie will be performing in this spectacular along with a bunch of familiars. Crooked Mouth is her brother Beau’s band.

Maestro Subgum and the Whole Revue*
Sun April 21 at 3:00 PM (afternoon)

Chicago Dramatists
1105 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL
*A Fundraiser for The Crooked Mouth’s CD
“The Times We’ll Have”
Chicago artists sing songs from the catalog of Maestro songs.

Light Up the Room
Saturday, April 6th

Uptown Branch Library
Hosted by Elizabeth Marino & Willa Moore
Register online. Share your work in a safe, supportive, beautiful space.
The Community Room at Uptown Branch Chicago Public Library
929 W. Buena Ave., Chicago, IL 60613 | 312-744-8400
Online registration link.

Support our 2024 Roots Salon Season
here: https://www.jamieoreilly.com/roots-salon-donors/

Daffodil photo by Meg Broz
Poster photo of Jamie by Monica Rogers
Nia angel photo by Tamara Staples

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