VOICES OF OUR LIVES, volume 2

by Steve Shapiro

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about

We are inundated every day with voices from a wide variety of sources. This second album includes the voices that have made a deep impression on me and my life. I was inspired to compose music to underscore the voices of William Butler Yeats, John F Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, William Shakespeare, Robert Frost, Nelson Mandela,, Charlie Chaplin and Neil deGrasse Tyson.

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released June 29, 2017

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Steve Shapiro Oakland, California

Steve Shapiro has composed music for hundreds of radio and TV commercials, documentary films, infomercials and other TV programs. He was the music director at Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, which produced hundreds of award-winning educational films and recordings. He has a BA in Music from Brown University and an MA in Music from the Manhattan School of Music. ... more

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Track Name: Robert Kennedy on the death of MLK
Robert F. Kennedy's speech on the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. was given on April 4, 1968, in Indianapolis, Indiana. Kennedy was the United States senator from New York and was campaigning to earn the 1968 Democratic presidential nomination when he learned that King had been assassinated.

"What we need in the United States is not division; what we need in the United States is not hatred; what we need in the United States is not violence or lawlessness, but love and wisdom, and compassion toward one another, and a feeling of justice towards those who still suffer within our country, whether they be white or whether they be black.”

On June 5, 1968, presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy was fatally shot at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, shortly after winning the California presidential primaries in the 1968 election, and died the next day while hospitalized.
Track Name: When You Are Old by YB Yeats
William Butler Yeats wrote this poem in October 1891, during his uncertain relationship with Maud Gonne who was an Anglo-Irish revolutionary, feminist and actress. Yeats had proposed to her in 1891 and many times after that, but had been rejected. The poem expresses unrequited love, loss and regret.
Track Name: John F. Kennedy 1961/1963
In his innaugural speech in 1961, President Kennedy urged American citizens to participate in public service and "ask not what your country can do for you--ask what you can do for your country.” He seemed to speak to all of us and his words are just as relevant today.
Then in Berlin (1963) President Kennedy commends Berliners on their spirit and dedication to democracy and expresses his solidarity with them through the words "as a free man, I take pride in the words Ich bin ein Berliner! (I am a Berliner)."
Track Name: JFK Address on Civil Rights
On June 10, 1963, President John F. Kennedy federalized National Guard troops and deployed them to the University of Alabama to force its desegregation. The next day, Governor Wallace yielded to the federal pressure, and two African American students successfully enrolled.
Track Name: FIRE AND ICE by Robert Frost
Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.

ROBERT FROST wrote this poem in1920

read by N.Scott Momaday
Track Name: The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

written and read by Robert Frost -1916
Track Name: Sonnet 55 by William Shakespeare
Not marble nor the gilded monuments
Of princes shall outlive this powerful rhyme,
But you shall shine more bright in these contents
Than unswept stone besmeared with sluttish time.
When wasteful war shall statues overturn,
And broils root out the work of masonry,
Nor Mars his sword nor war’s quick fire shall burn
The living record of your memory.
’Gainst death and all-oblivious enmity
Shall you pace forth; your praise shall still find room
Even in the eyes of all posterity
That wear this world out to the ending doom.
So, till the Judgement that yourself arise,
You live in this, and dwell in lovers’ eyes.

-WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE c. 1600

(narrated by James Earl Jones)
Track Name: Charlie Chaplin: The Great Dictator
The Great Dictator is a 1940 American political satire comedy-drama film written, directed, produced, scored by and starring Charlie Chaplin. In this speech, he makes an impassioned plea for brotherhood and goodwill.

"Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people! Now let us fight to fulfill that promise! Let us fight to free the world – to do away with national barriers – to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men’s happiness. Soldiers! in the name of democracy, let us all unite!"
Track Name: Nelson Mandela
NELSON MANDELA was a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary, politician, and philanthropist, who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999. He was the country's first black head of state and the first elected in a fully representative democratic election. His government focused on dismantling the legacy of apartheid by tackling institutionalised racism and fostering racial reconciliation. Mandela served 27 years in prison.
Track Name: Neil deGrasse Tyson
"The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it." -Neil deGrasse Tyson

Neil deGrasse Tyson is an American astrophysicist, author, and science communicator. Since 1996, he has been the Director of the Hayden Planetarium in New York City.