Over The Rainbow

There is no doubt that Judy Garland is one of my all time favourite female singers and over the years it has been my privilege to sing many of the songs she made famous. Today I’m delighted to share my own recording of her iconic song “Over the Rainbow” from the 1939 film “The Wizard of Oz.”

Judy was only 16 years old when she was cast as the young Dorothy Gale

Singing For The Soul

Today, most funerals have moved away from focusing on the sadness of death, towards a much more personalised celebration for that life. If you would like me to help you celebrate the life of your loved one, either by singing at their funeral, or by delivering an inspirational reading or even presenting your family’s eulogy, please contact me to discuss your particular requirements.

I provide an empathetic, considerate and caring service. My foremost wish is to sing that special, treasured song which will celebrate the life of your loved one and create a unique and special goodbye. I sing from the heart, my voice a gift to you and to them on this most important of days.

I have a whole selection of beautiful religious and non-religious music. If you are unsure, contact me to work with you to find the perfect song for your ceremony.

Ruth Smile

More information is available at www.ruthstrangewaysingingforthesoul.com

It’s A Lovely Day Tomorrow

This is the third Vera Lynn song, which my friend Martin suggested I sing. I’d like to say a big thank you to him for highlighting them and also the “Bomber Harris” film, starring John Thaw, which I’ve now bought and look forward to watching.

Although “It’s A Lovely Day Tomorrow” was composed by Irving Berlin in 1939 and appeared in the 1940 musical “Louisiana Purchase,” today the song is synonymous with Vera Lynn when it was used to lift the spirits of the British people during the darkest days of WWII and the Blitz. It’s a beautiful song and I’ve really enjoyed working on it. I hope you enjoy my recording.

Other recordings were made in 1940 by Al Bowlly and Frank Sinatra.

Smile

This song is dedicated to my dear friend Cath, who suggested I sing it. I hope you enjoy it.

“Smile” was written by Charlie Chaplin in 1936 for his film “Modern Times.” Its’ hauntingly beautiful and poignant lyrics touched deep into my soul as I recorded it and reminded me how deep each one of us is digging into our reserves right now and to remember to smile and remain optimistic.

Nat King Cole made a wonderful recording of the song in 1954.

 

When The Lights Go On Again

“When The Lights Go On Again, All Over The World” is the second Vera Lynn song that my friend suggested I record. Although it was recorded originally by Vaughn Monroe in 1942, Vera recorded it soon afterwards and it’s her version we still remember and play today.

Music was a large part of the culture during  WWII and served as a uniting factor among people around the world. “When the Lights Go On Again” was one of the songs that helped keep up the spirits of those who were struggling. Once again we see that its’ lyrics are still relevant today. Whilst we don’t have to face bombs falling from the sky, or race for the air raid shelters, the invisible Coronavirus still forms a deadly enemy living amongst us in the atmosphere, and we can draw parallels between lockdown and the air raid shelters of the 40’s.

 

I hope my recording, about a time where we can all be free again, helps lift your spirits.

 

Virtual Motivational Music

Given the current Covid restrictions, I am continuing to share my voice and raise spirits on my You Tube channel and I am also available for virtual entertainment in care homes across the country.

I have been providing entertainment to the care industry since 1996. I have an extensive repertoire of songs which include “Songs From The Shows”; “50’s, 60’s & 70’s Music”; “Music Hall”; Songs From WWI & WWII”; “Pub Singalong Songs.” 

I established Motivational Music in 2011, to encourage care home residents to sing, have fun, move and make music. 

Between 2012 – 2015 I worked as an Activity Coordinator in residential care, where I formed the Guinness World Record’s The Oldest Choir In The World.

In 2017, I introduced “Music for the Mind” music sessions, specifically designed for those living with dementia and their carers. I continued to build on this experience until the outbreak of Covid 19, working in many care homes in the Yorkshire area bringing entertainment to residents living with dementia. 

For further details or to book a Motivational Music session please contact me by email at sruthstrangeway@btinternet.com or phone me on 07810 807518

There’s A Land Of Begin Again

I’d like to thank my friend who, a couple of weeks ago, suggested a few Vera Lynn songs that I might enjoy singing. After listening to them, I decided to sing this particular one called “There’s A Land Of Begin Again.” It’s one of her lesser known songs, but instantly I connected with it, loving the lyrics which resonated with many feelings I’ve experienced throughout lockdown; isolation, loneliness, hopelessness and despair and a deep, deep longing to be re-united with all that I hold most dear.

Vera Lynn is one of my lifelong heroines. Even as a little girl, I loved her rich, warm, comforting voice and the uplifting, inspirational songs she sang.  How I would have loved to have been entertained by her, live in her heyday.

“There’s A Land Of Begin Again” talks about new beginnings on the horizon, just over the hill. It’s a real song of hope. I hope it helps lift your spirits and you find yourself looking out, over the hill, towards a new better and brighter tomorrow.

Thank you for listening.

 

We’ll Gather Lilacs In The Spring Again

Today, I’ve recorded the beautiful song “We’ll Gather Lilacs In The Spring Again.” It’s a song of hope and my hope is that my recording will help to lift spirits a little and encourage us to look ahead to better times, as we face our third lockdown in 12 months.

The song was written in 1945 by Welsh composer Ivor Novello, for the hit musical “Perchance to Dream”. The stage musical opened at the Hippodrome Theatre in London’s West End in 1945 and ran until 1948. This particular popular and enduring number emerged from the production as World War II drew to a close.

It describes the yearning of parted couples to be together again. It evokes the joy they will feel once they are re-united, and the simple pleasures they will enjoy as they walk together in Springtime  amidst the English countryside, whilst the lilac blossom is in flower. Its’ words still seem relevant and poignant over 75 years since it was first written.

 

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas

Like me, I’m sure you’re thinking of Christmas past and remembering all those family members, friends and acquaintances we’ve not seen this year due to the Covid restrictions. How I’ve missed each one of them and especially my lovely friends in the care homes. It is with a deep sadness that I reflect on the Christmas carols we’ve not sung together in 2020.

So, with all that in mind, here I am singing to each and everyone of you, “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.”

I know it’s going to be a very different one but remember, when everything else is taken away, the only constant is yourself. So, just like the shepherds, angels and wise men, look for the star that shines brightly in your life and gives you hope. Keep following it and trust in a brighter tomorrow.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas. I send you my love and sincere hopes for a brighter 2021.

The Lord’s My Shepherd

Since the start of Covid 19, I have enjoyed supporting the York Spiritualist Centre by singing at some of their Sunday Zoom services. It’s been wonderful revisiting hymns that I’ve not sung for years. One such hymn is “The Lord’s My Shepherd.”

This Christian hymn, is based on the words of Psalm 23. Its’ words were written in 1641 by Francis Rous. My recording is sung to the tune Crimond which was composed in 1871 by Jessie Seymour Irvine, daughter of the Minister of the Crimond Parish, with harmonies by David Grant.