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Blessings

by SJ Tucker

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about

Blessings is a purely spiritual work of art. This daring album is entirely dedicated to the pagan segment of S.J.'s fanbase, and may not be appropriate for all audiences. For those that are open to alternative spiritual paths, this album is not to be missed. Blessings opens with an invocation and includes other musical passages which are both powerful and functional, such as a moving piece about the power of the labyrinth, a hymn dedicated to the male deity Herne, a pair of highly energetic tunes devoted to dance, and two playful numbers relating to Mama Dragon. Ginger Doss of Dreamtrybe and Velvet Hammer fame describes Blessings as, "The most sacred, most highly evolved body of pagan work I have ever experienced. SJ walks her path, and it shows."

This album is now in its THIRD printing.

credits

released 20 June 2007

All guitars, bass, bodhran, bells, bowls, djembe, programming, vocals and harmonies: S. J. Tucker
Synths: Ginger Doss
Guest djembe on 'Hymn To Herne': Winterhawk
Guest harmonies on 'Herne': Omnisti and Valkyrie

Tracks 1, 2, 5-9 mixed by Ginger Doss at Eagle Audio
Tracks 3, 10 mixed by S. J. Tucker at Rolling Gypsy Minstrel, Ltd
Track 4 mixed by Winterhawk at Tekneek's Hidden Studio
Album mastered by Mark Yoshida of AudioGraphic Masterworks

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Track Name: For Love of All Who Gather
With but a single breath to clear the way,
I honor all who listen as I play
I honor Freya, Brigid, Cerridwen
I honor every goddess, in my way
I honor Sairyss, Fafnir, Naelyon, Grael
I honor all my friends of wing and tail
I honor earth and flame, rain and wind
For love of all who gather,
let the song begin
Track Name: April Fool's Day
All on an April Fool's Day Sunday
Riding, riding we shall be
Homeward thru the waking spring
Clear 'cross Tennessee!

My best love was riding shotgun
Myself in the driver's seat
We went riding all day Sunday
home for our loved ones all to see.
Unplug the bed, stretch and yawn.
Felt like ash in the crack of doom,
Leaving at the crack of Nine
from a cozy North Carolina room.

All on an April Fool's Day Sunday
Riding, riding we shall be
Homeward thru the waking spring
Clear 'cross Tennessee!

Left behind the Northern snow,
fields of white, on the day before.
Off thru the frisky mountain rain,
winter storms we'll chase no more!
Tunnels, trees and mountain fog,
highway miles and a cloudy day,
Laughing streams and waterfalls,
springtime splashing all the way!

All on an April Fool's Day Sunday
Riding, riding we shall be
Homeward thru the waking spring
Clear 'cross Tennessee!

New leaves rising on the vine
and flowers simply everywhere,
never doubt the day was fine.
We rode as quickly as we dared!
April fools and flowers bold,
March is leaving like a lamb.
Knoxville, Nashville, Westward Ho!
(round the churchfolk traffic jams)

All on an April Fool's Day Sunday
Riding, riding we shall be
Homeward thru the waking spring
Clear 'cross Tennessee!

And here's our priestess at the door!
Merrily we greeted her.
Circle round for what's in store:
a pie in the face from a Minister!

All on an April Fool's Day Sunday
Riding, riding we shall be
Homeward thru the waking spring
Clear 'cross Tennessee!

All on an April Fool's Day Sunday
Riding, riding we shall be
Homeward thru the waking spring
to Memphis, Tennessee!

Carrot casts the circle round
and Rabbit rules the afternoon.
Keep your leaping summer fires--
We revel 'neath an April moon!
Track Name: Firebird's Child
I am the firebird!
I am his daughter!
I am the firebird's child!
I am a firebird!
I am his daughter!
And like the flame, I am wild wild wild wild
WILD!
I am the firebird!
I am his daughter!
I am the firebird's child!
I am a firebird, the boldest song you've ever heard
Join in the dance, and make it wild, wild, wild!
Join in the dance and make it wild!

To see a maiden dance around
a fire is not so strange
but fire dances round the limbs
of this uncommon maid!
Be brave enough to burn
and you'll be brave enough to fly!
Join your sister Solace as
she lights the morning sky!

I am the firebird...

Wonders of the water air and
earth are all the same
you'll never know a wonder
like the wonders of the flame!
Freely fly as what you are
and never walk in shame!
You must not fear to blister
if you'd live a life in flame!
I am girl and firebird
and solace is my name!

I am the firebird...

If you're brave enough to dance
then you are brave enough to fly!
Forget what's right and proper!
You won't know until you try!
If you're brave enough to fly,
then you are brave enough to burn!
Take my hand and join me in the
Carnival of Dawn!

I am the firebird...

Sister will you follow me?
Sister will you follow me?
Sister will you follow me?
Sister sorrow walk with me!

(Solace, Sorrow, round and round
Sisters burn the morning down
Solace, Sorrow, round and round,
Sister, burn your Sorrow down!)

Like a flame you must be wild/I am a firebird!

I am the firebird...

You must not fear to blister if you'd live a life in flame!
Freely fly as what you are, keep dancing just the same!
You'll never know a wonder like the wonders of the flame!
I am girl and firebird and Solace is my name!
Track Name: Hymn to Herne
You can say your prayers, work your rites
burn your little candles day and night
you can shimmy 'til dawn to the pounding drums
but you best be ready when the Horned One comes, yeah

If you wake to the sound of a hunting horn,
dance a ring in the gathering storm.
If the Solstice time gets your panties in a wad,
it's just the coming of the Horned God

chorus
He will call you out, make you sweat,
give you a blessing that you'll never forget.
So revel in the chase and let your heartbeat run:
Blessed are the children of the Horned One!

Hunter who tracks outside of time,
guardian lord of ancient rhyme,
brother stag in the musky glen
and consort of the Goddess in her woodland den,
we call you forth as we make our way,
walking in your power every day.
Guide us true in our hunt this night
and maybe even later in the Great Rite!

chorus
He will call you out...

If you wake to the sound of a hunting horn
dance a ring in
the gathering storm
revel in the chase and let your heartbeat run
but you'd best be ready, little one!
You'd best be ready when the Horned One comes!

chorus
He gonna call you out...
Track Name: Witches' Rune
Darksome Night and Shining Moon
Balance of the dark and light,
hearken ye our Witch's Rune,
as we perform our sacred rite!

With earth and water, air and fire,
by blade and bowl and circle round,
we come to you with our desire:
let all that is hidden now be found!

With censor, candle, book and sword,
and ringing of the altar bell,
we tie a knot within our cord
to bind our magic in a spell.

Mother of the summer fields,
goddess of the silver moon,
join with us as power builds!
dance with us our witch's rune!

Father of the Summer dew
Hunter of the winter snows
With open arms we welcome you!
Dance with us as power grows!

By all the light of moon and sun,
by all the might of land and sea,
chant the rune and it is done.
As we will, so mote it be!
Track Name: Handfast Blessing
Fly we on o'er hill and dale
spruces guard our fairytale
hemlock branches bless and stay
upon my lovely's wedding day
Joy on thy fair handfasting day!

Tide will roll and bridge stand fast
eagles watch and breezes pass
ebb and flow whilst ravens play
upon my brother's wedding day
Joy on thy fair handfasting day!
Track Name: Rabbit's Song
Trickster came a'calling To find a totem here
To teach the foolish heart of man
Without installing fear.
Many came and many went And still the Trickster paused;
Bear and Cat and Tiger tried but had too many claws.
Dog and Wolf though wise indeed
Had teeth t'were quite a fright
And Owl with his tawny eyes could only see at night.
"No," the Trickster said at last
"Teachers, I see many.
But My way is full of laughter and in you I see not any."

But beneath the tree where Eagle sat
Coyote told the tale
of silly hares cavorting
In the old country of Wales.
Raven stared unto the sun
And Crow sang awful songs
And Rabbit sat a'listening
With ears so wondrous long.

"Aha!" The Trickster danced a dance
Of mirth and vict'ry sweet.
He leapt with joy and swooped a swoop
And landed at their feet.
"Of all here now," the Trickster said
"You are the very Beasts!"
And Rabbit said, "I'm sorry sir
But of all, we are the least."

The Trickster smiled and raised a hand
And spoke: "I have a plan
The four of you shall help me
To teach the heart of Man.
Raven with your love of light
The Sun you'll steal and soon.
For the gift of warmth I give to man
To be the greatest boon.
And Crow, you silly creature
Who sings without a voice,
Teach man `bout pride and helping
You really have no choice.
Coyote my friend, together we'll spin
Many a tale at night,
And show man by our naughtiness
What really should be right."

At last He turned to Rabbit
With a twinkle in his eye
"You'll be my favorite creature
And here's the reason why:
Your eyes are bright, your feet are swift
Your ears hear round the bend
But your very simple humbleness
Will steal the heart of men.
Together we shall thwart the pains
The gods do throw to earth
And turn aside their fiery darts
With merriment and mirth.
And when time comes that men forget
The lessons animals render
T'will be the humble rabbit
That mankind will remember."

And round the Trickster the animals thronged
The birds and all the beasts
And humbly bowed to the king they found,
who thought himself "the least."
Track Name: Come To The Labyrinth
Walk between the worlds, bravely down the candle road.
The light will lead you deep into your core.
Move into the center, add your sorrow to the coals
with incense rising, steady as a prayer.
Though the heart is heavy as the dance is burning down,
may you raise your eyes and never bow your head.
We are not alone.

It only takes the tiniest of fires sometimes
to light the way you knew was aways there.
In the heart of matters, it's the journey keeps us warm,
the lights that lead us where we are to go.
May you raise your eyes and know with every step:
we are not alone.

We are come to the labyrinth tonight,
walking one by one.
In the dark of Samhain, a riddle burning bright,
and candles waving down.

It only takes the tiniest of fires sometimes
to light the way you knew was always waiting for you there.
In the heart of matters, it's the journey keeps us warm
and the incense rising steady as a prayer
May you raise your eyes and never bow your head.

We are come to the labyrinth tonight,
walking one by one.
In the dark of Samhain, a riddle burning bright,
and candles waving down.
We are vessels of the highest love
in a lesson, burning bright, the lesson of our lives.
When all our sorrows cauldron into one,
be reborn, this Samhain night.

We are come to the labyrinth tonight,
candles waving down.
Track Name: For Love Of All Who Gather (Reprise) _ Spirit Call
By our very will, the rite is done
with Lord and Lady watching, hand in hand
By power of earth and rain, flame and wind,
for love of all who gather,
let the circle open.
Track Name: In The Name Of The Dance
You don't have to speak: you can do it in the dance
You don't have to hide: you are safe within the dance
All of us are free in the heart of the dance
So mote it be, in the name of the dance!

The circle is here; it lives in each of us
in perfect love and perfect trust.

The circle is here; it lives in each of us
when we meet in perfect love and perfect trust