Music is a theme in both of my previous novels and will be a major theme in my forthcoming novel. In Olive Branches Don’t Grow On Trees, Silvia listens to music while she paints. Music inspires her: “The music seemed to go right through her and ended up, somehow, on the canvas. If you stared at any of her paintings long enough, you could hear guitars, harmonicas and even the occasional wah-wah peddle.”
In Discovery of an Eagle, the traveling siblings visit Clay, a blues musician living in Memphis. Clay is passionate about playing music and reminds Cosmo of the importance and value of living passionately. “As Clay played, his face filled with light, growing brighter and brighter as he played on. Cosmo remembered seeing the same kind of light in his own face at one time. Now when he looked in the mirror, he saw a dull, lifeless face looking back. He wished he could get that light back in his face. He knew he couldn’t get that light back by playing the blues. That wasn’t his passion. His passion was learning and when he stopped learning, a part of him died, or at least, went to sleep. Maybe now, it was waking up.”
In my forthcoming novel, A Very Rich Poor Man tells the story the Greco family matriarch, Donna and her brother Vincent, who was a renaissance man and played a variety of instruments. He had self-taught himself the guitar, mandolin, bass, harp, violin, dulcimer, penny whistle and banjo. While music is a theme of its own in this novel, it is part of the greater overall theme of practicing and studying that which contributes to the richness of one’s inner life.