It was the winter of 1993 and I was in my grandmother’s kitchen nervously attempting to tell her that I was gay. I had grown up hearing the word faggot so regularly that the idea of confessing that I was one of “those people” was a threat to everything I held dear, especially my relationship with my grandmother. She paused after I told her and took cookies out of the oven and began to tell me about a cd she bought called Yes I Am by a musician named Melissa Etheridge. She said she purchased it because of a song called “Come To My Window” and put the cd on for us to listen to and at the end of the night, she told me she loved me and that I should take the cd with me. I put the cd on and began my journey home. The first song that played on my discman was called “Silent Legacy” and it felt like a blueprint from the gods. I pressed repeat and took the long way home because I wanted to ingest this song until it became part of my body. With each play, I walked faster trying to catch up to the tears of joy that accompany an awakening. I could feel the spirit of revolution grow around me and soon, because of this song, I felt it grow inside of me.
Melissa Etheridge: Silent Legacy
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In anticipation of the upcoming New York Festival of Song’s PROTEST at Hudson Hall at the historic Hudson Opera House on March 3 at 7pm, members of Hudson Hall community – staff, friends, and artists – have selected their favorite songs in the program. For tickets, visit hudsonhall.org or phone (518) 822 1438.
Today’s post is by photographer JD Urban, whose exhibition The Everyday People Project will be on view in Hudson Hall later this year.