I have a confession to make. Songs play in my head every minute of the day, and many of them are Irish. Even though St. Patrick’s Day has come and gone, Ireland is never far from my mind. That’s because on a daily basis I use Celtic music as part of my writing routine.
My relationship with Irish music began when I saw the show Riverdance for the first time and heard the choral group, Anuna perform. Before long, their music filled the house, initiating me to medieval music and heartbreaking harmony, sung with a minimum of instrumentals. Overtime I learned that the music is always recorded inside ancient cathedrals and churches, most times in the Gaelic language. The unique sound of Michael McGlynn’s compositions and their ability to transport me to another time and place have enriched the soundtrack in my head and in my heart.
On a trip to the Aran Islands over ten years ago, I lay on a tuft of grass above the raging Atlantic with a medieval song playing in my head, the echo of the waves pounding against my back. Now, every time I hear that song, I feel the sting of the salt-misted wind and the beat of the waves against the cliffs. There have been times in my life when I need the peace of that moment and I draw that song from my treasure chest of memories.
Every morning, when confronted with the reminder of just how rough my rough draft can be, I turn on the music and allow it to calm and center me. That the composer, a mere mortal, was able to interpret age-old text and music and bring them back to life with both sweetness and power, inspires me that I might be able to do the same with my stories. The lyrics and melody bring me home to a place inside myself. Stirred by what my ears are hearing and my soul is absorbing, my special place longs to create something just as beautiful and lasting. The songs give me hope.
Whether its opera, heavy metal, or Celtic music that moves you, let the artistry lift you up and take you to your own haven of creativity and vision.
She spent her childhood running wild on an Idaho mountainside. Although she’s lived across the U.S., she is still an Idahoan at heart and a notorious potato pusher. She has a degree in Human Services and worked as a roofer, a hoofer, a computer data entry operator and a stay-at-home mom.
Music has ruled Jennifer’s world since birth. She shimmied out of the womb with a bad case of Boogie Fever, but soon fell in love with the lyrics, how the words fit together perfectly like a jigsaw puzzle. Jennifer has dreamt of writing romances since reading Wuthering Heights at the tender age of twelve, and now lives that dream, using music on a daily basis to uplift and inspire her writing. It’s no coincidence that Ian, the hero in Mercy of the Moon, uses music to win heroine Maggie’s heart.
She lives in rural Florida with her husband and Great Dane puppy, and enjoys frequent visits from her three grandchildren and three grown children. She feverishly lobbies for the return of breeches and would really love to see her husband of thirty-five years in a pair. Jennifer can be found online at: JenniferTaylorWrites.com