Executive Pagan

If Eddie Izzard can be an executive transvestite, I can be an executive pagan.

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My Samhain mix

Posted by Erik on November 1, 2008

As promised. This list is shorter, as it’s harder to find good Samhain-appropriate material (“good” in this case being defined as “I like it” :) )…for me, Samhain is not about death per se, or even Death, but about loss, remembrance, and turning inward; and I rely on this mix to help me set the mood.

Once again, I’d love to hear your suggestions!

  • “Mistress Mine/Come Away, Death” – John Harle with Elvis Costello
  • “Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night” – John Cale
  • “Gilgamesh Laments for Enkidu” – Tony Garone
  • “Verdigris” – Jonathan Byrd and Dromedary
  • “Mama’s Hands” – Three Weird Sisters
  • “Samhain Eve” – Damh the Bard
  • “Memento Mori” – Rhea’s Obsession
  • “The Scythe” – Gaia Consort
  • “Don’t Fear (the Reaper)” – Unto Ashes (this is a really meditative, downtempo version)
  • “The Captain and the Kid” – Jimmy Buffett
  • “Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep” – Libera *
  • “Some Friends” – John Cale

I also listen to the fantastic compilation “All Souls Arise” from the (now sadly defunct) company Woven Wheat Whispers; almost the entire disc is perfect for this holiday, but there are a few tracks that I have woven into my permanent mix:

  • “Samhain Song” – Doug Peters
  • “Let the Fire Begin” – Mary Jane
  • “Welcome Cold November” – Pig’s Ear
  • “Night Falls on Summer’s End” – The Owl Service

* The words to this remarkable poem by Mary Elizabeth Frye:

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there; I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond glints on snow,
I am the sun on ripened grain,
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there; I did not die.

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9 Responses to “My Samhain mix”

  1. Mam Adar said

    We were just listening to Cale’s version of the Dylan Thomas poem last night over dinner. Wonderful song.

  2. Kullervo said

    One of my son’s middle names is Gilgamesh.

  3. You should hear “One Hell of a Life” by Katell Koening (I might be spelling that almost correctly).

  4. Feral Boy said

    One that always gives me the chills is Ralph Stanley singing “Oh Death”.

    — Feral Boy

  5. executivepagan said

    I’m considering the Johnny Cash cover of NIN’s “Hurt” – not so much for the lyrics, but because of the hauntingly emotional video. If you haven’t seen it, it really feels like he knew the end was near and was looking for a way to express some of his feelings about the journey he has taken…

  6. Kullervo said

    That video and song are really intense. I saw Johnny Cash in concert on his last tour. It was pretty amazing.

  7. Feral Boy said

    “Hurt” is another I would have recommended, too. Probably nobody else had more right
    to sing those words.

  8. executivepagan said

    Yep. Reznor may have written the song, but Johnny flat owned it; it might as well have been written specifically for him.

  9. mahud said

    I’ve tagged you for the six random things meme!

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