I have just published another songbook!

Velvet Nights and Other Songs includes eight original  songs and is now available as a spiral bound print book or as an e-Book.  The cover is my art. Details about the book can be seen here.  A YouTube video for Velvet Nights can be seen here.  The YouTube video for My Red Hair, another song in the songbook, can be seen here.

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Velvet Nights and Other Songs was my first songbook and is being reissued in a revised Second Edition. The songs in this collection are about spiritual transformation.  I am influenced by Brugh Joy’s book, Avalanche, for insight into the Fall from Grace as neither mistake nor sin, but a movement from unity to duality.

The song Velvet Nights portrays a woman’s fall from grace and her resulting psychic move from unity with the loved one to independence as she faces the dawn of her new consciousness.  Just as Velvet Nights refers to Eden (“we enter Paradise”) and the Fall (“dark shadows over our love”) so also does the song A Distant Eden. This song pursues the earlier reference to Genesis with references to the serpent in the garden.  Eden is lost in this song, and death is hollow.

My Red Hair is about my own attempts to deny aging and death by dying my hair as I try to “delay the black night of silent time–the night of profound silence.”

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Click here for a downloadable printable file of the first page of my-red-hair-2.

Another song in the book, The House of Spirits, is truly autobiographical.  While at the University at Fayetteville, Arkansas, I lived in an old Victorian house on Leverett Street.  One night in October I saw the spirit of a woman without a face.

I painted the cover design for this collection to reveal my personality structure—a massive white wall of pragmatism and rationality supported only by a flimsy pole at the base of which coils a serpent, my shadow.  In the distance is the longed-for Church illuminated by white light.  Alas, the distance between the self and salvation is dark with sinister rust-colored bushes encircling the self.

My new Gallery

I am learning how to transfer photos of my art from the computer into my new gallery.  I would never be able to do this without the help of my husband who is a wizard at this computer thing.  I have to go over how to do everything a number of times before I catch on. I think I was born in the wrong generation!  I will try to post a few photos every week so watch my gallery!  My Gallery is on the right hand side of my home page. If you double click any image the gallery will open up enlarged. You can navigate with the right and left arrows.

Another book cover by R. S. Perry

Here is another book cover I designed for Volume I, The Collected Works of Luke Peeples. Luke collected and arranged Negro Spirituals in South Carolina.  If you want to learn more about Luke’s music, you can just click the above link on his title, or go to astarfell.com.

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My art used as bookcovers

The cover design for my Celtic Crone Songs uses one of my paintings.  My best friend’s daughter posed for the painting.  Her costume was made by her mother.  I have designed several book covers and you will see them on this site.  One of the first covers I designed was for the songbook  A Star Fell and Other Songs by my husband J.S. Graves, the editor of my songbook.  I painted this in acrylic and still have the master painting. Many of the songs in his book use poems by his mother, Florence Rubert Graves Rossi, for lyrics.

I also wrote the lyrics to Cry, Sad Bird, one of the songs in his songbook. You can hear this song and view its lyrics on YouTube by clicking on the link above.

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