There is war in the Ukraine. War hurts and kills. It’s complicated and it’s not.
I know that the Ukraine and its historic interactions with Russia are convoluted at best. But on a human level, I also know that the invasion of Ukraine will end with far too many dead, maimed, or devastated in so many other ways.
When the invasion began, I started listening to all the Ukrainian music I could find. Almost without exception, I can hear the heart in every song and every instrumental. I’ve noticed numerous media outlets starting to invite or emphasize Ukrainian music.
Propelled by my sadness about this conflict, I wrote, arranged, recorded, and released Bandura and Sopilka. I was still swimming in the beautiful ocean of sounds I had been listening to. Don’t get me wrong: I’m not saying that I wrote a Ukrainian song. Just that I was influenced by what the musicians from that country have created.
One way I am choosing to help is by donating to an organization that I trust. That’s why I’ve chosen Doctors Without Borders. While Russia attacks or occupies the Ukraine, for every download of this song from links above and below, I will double what you pay in a gift to their efforts.
Instrumentally, I was especially drawn to the two instruments in the title of this piece. The bandura is a stringed instrument with a wide range. That width is both in terms of pitches and styles. It’s sometimes compared to a zither or a lyre, but it is so much more than either of those instruments. I think you’ll notice this sound right away near the beginning the track.
“Sopilka” basically is a wooden flute. Though this name is used for a wide variety of aerophones in the Ukraine, many of them are medium to high-pitched flutes. Typically, these instruments have six to ten holes and the mouthpiece is on the end (rather than on the side).
Honoring Ukraine Musicians
I particularly want to honor Ukraine musicians. They, like most of the common folk of that country, will be powerfully impacted by this war. I pray that their music and their influence will not be wiped away. Now that I’ve taken the time to listen, they have been so inspiring to me.
Thanks for listening. And especially thank you for caring.
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UPDATE March 5: Thanks to your support, I’ve contributed more than $200 to aid efforts helping the people of the Ukraine!