Friday musical inspiration: Aretha, “Natural Woman”

There are some days where I work hard at music, that it seems a struggle. That I wonder why I do it.

Then I get lucky, and get to have a moment of transcendence.

Those are hard to share. They don’t happen at the front of the stage, and they generally happen while a lot of other music making is going on. And unless you’re a choral singer yourself, I think it might be hard to relate.

But this video might help. Watching Carole King lose it as the Queen of Soul performs her hit, watching the president wipe a tear as Aretha pays tribute to the great songwriter, and getting the astonishing high from watching the conclusion of the performance is a little like what one of those transcendent moments feels like from the risers in the back of the stage.