Saturday, September 06, 2008


As promised, today is a special spin about a special boy named Washington. It is a song written by my nephew, Matthew a/k/a Matty who is a twenty year old junior in college. Matthew wanted it mentioned that this was a first effort in songwriting. I say that information is not important. I guess I got him nervous when I asked if I could feature the song on my "wildly popular Saturday Spin series" and mentioned that we were "going National - even International!" I think the sound quality lost something in transition but you'll get the idea.

Matthew's proud Mama, my dear sister Trish, sent me the song a couple of weeks ago when we were talking about the kids. It's my understanding that Matthew started to learn guitar not too long ago (I believe he is self taught). His younger brother, Colin, is amazing in his own right on the guitar. So I immediately got the lawyers involved and had his people talk to my people and, here it is. A little background about Matthew and how he came to write about Washington (courtesy of my sister Trish).

Matthew is a psychology major and has spent his past four summers working at a camp for the children of migrant workers in Southern New Jersey. The people are very poor and travel to the crops. They are immigrants from far flung locales such as Haiti and Mexico. In this case, the crops happen to be strawberries and blueberries at local farms. The parents work from sunup to sundown.

The children spend the mornings in a school setting and then the afternoons in the camp program which includes athletics, swimming, art. Washington is from Haiti and suffered with both physical and mental difficulties, as well as a language barrier. He could not run with the kids, play ball, etc. but he loved the pool. Matty was so upset the first few days of camp, and then found a way into Washington's world with the aid of another older Haitian boy translating for them.

Also from the Trish email, "sadly, Matty "lost" a couple of kids this past summer when their parents decided that they, too, were old enough now to pick and refused to let them go to camp." Such is life right here in these United States.

Of course I am biased, but this song moves me. The violin in the song was composed and played by Matthew's girlfriend, Colleen, a music major at the same school as Matty. Enjoy!


Matthew and Colleen are pictured seated under the umbrella at the table. Proud Mama Trish incognito in shades along with Joe. In the foreground, my nephew Benjamin and niece, Shannon plot an overthrow of the grill.

I'll round this up by thanking Matty for allowing his music to be shared, Trish for answering my questions and sharing the song to begin with, and good ole Doug for his usual technical assistance without which I'd still be cussing as I figured out how to get the song here.

Have a great weekend!


Doug said...

Great song. I'm pretty interrested in the grill, too. What we having?

Ariel the Thief said...

Great song! If someone made a movie of Washington, this song should be in it. The violin is beautiful.

Hobbes said...

Hang on to that girlfriend; her violin is really good in there.
What a cool young man, your nephew.

Tom & Icy said...

Great song and well performed. We enjoyed listening several times.

actonbell said...

Wonderful! He has a good voice, too, and the Colleen's violin is perfect. Thanks for sharing--the sound is very good.

pia said...

That was wonderful.

Personally I would love a G's family tree post--that's just me though

tsduff said...

Wow. That was a pleasure to listen to. Talent bursts out everywhere, from the poignant lyrics gently sung and the simple guitar strumming all the way to the wistfully sweet violin. I'm very impressed with Matthew and Colleen. I too have a nephew named Matthew - he is 14 and lives in Albania with my sister Julee and her family. Aren't nephews the bomb?

G said...

Doug, glad you enjoyed and thanks again. Now grab some ribs.

Ariel, I love that idea.

Hobbes, I agree on all counts. Thank you.

Tom & Amp & Icy, one listen for each of you :) Thanks, glad you enjoyed.

Actonbell, they do sound great together. I'm glad you stopped by to hear.

Pia, thanks on their behalf. The family tree might have to be a series - hmmm....

You're always giving me ideas.

Terry, it drew me in from the first time I heard it - I heartily agree. Nephews are indeed!

Thanks all for stopping in and having a listen. Matthew was quite astounded that I was spinning his tune. I hope he and Colleen continue to collaborate - they have something there.

Have a great weekend!

Trish said...

Gina, and all who stopped by to listen: thank you thank you thank you! I spoke to Matty earlier, and he and Colleen absolutely forgot to check this out on Saturday, and are doing so tonight. I guess that's life on campus: work, school, music, "research assisting", and the like - you'd think these kids were busy or something {smile}
I'm proud of my son, and of Colleen. But I'm touched by all your comments, and mostly by my younger (grrrrrr....)sister's wit, artistry, and generally her beautiful outlook on life, which seems to be: Live, but laugh. Alot.
love trish

G said...

Those damn slackers! :) It was and is my distinct pleasure to have shared their song in my little corner of the Blogosphere which happens to include the great folks who commented. I enjoy it more with each listen.

Don't worry about the age thing - after a certain point we're all in the same boat! So one word for you - Marco!

Love you lots.