Last night was one of those Milwaukee nights that made me hopeful.
For Milwaukee, for mankind, for the world, for me.
A few friends invited me to see Milwaukee-based singer-songwriter Peter Mulvey Tuesday night at Anodyne Coffee Roasting Co. in Walker's Point. The night was dubbed as a "in the round" and included Christopher Porterfield, Megan Burtt and John Statz.
The four touring songwriters – two from Milwaukee and two from Denver – gathered "in the round" to swap songs and accompany each other through out the night. The intimate show was perfect at Anodyne – if you have not been to this venue yet for a show you are missing a new Milwaukee gem.
There were a few highlights of the fantastic show that I felt compelled to share – mainly because they really touched my heart and gave me hope. I've written recently on few things that are beacons of the good in the world – and I will keep doing so.
Peter Mulvey is one of those beacons – and so is his song "Take Down Your Flag." Peter saw the news of the Emanuel A.M.E. Church massacre and decided to write a song. He wrote the song shortly after in the basement dressing room of the Calvin Theatre in Northampton, Mass., right before his set. Then he performed it. It isn't just any song – it is one with a message and a mission.
While my heart still weeps for those lost in the tragedy in Charleston – my heart did leap at Peter's lyrics and the message he is sending to the world. In all the dark and hate in this world his lyrics are needed.
One verse reads:
"It will take all of the love in all of our hearts,
and it will also take something more.
It will take all of the love in all of our hearts,
and it will also take something more."
Another highlight of the night included Mulvey leading the crowd with "Imagine." He delicated strummed the chords of the Beatles classic but never uttered a sound. The crowd sang instead. First a few, then more, and eventually all of Anodyne was singing it for him.
We do imagine better days ahead. At least I do – and hopefully you do too. Peter's song of "Take Down The Flag" has become a chain song of sorts. More than 62 different verses are now written for it – honoring those love, lost but not forgotten.
In a time like this, the world needs songs like this. Thank you, Peter.
Carolynn Buser is one of Milwaukee's loudest and most adamant cheerleaders (don't dare try to disagree). She's the primary voice behind much of OnMilwaukee's social media and content direction, and apologizes in advance if she can be too sarcastic at times.
What else? She's a wine lover, closet trashy novel reader, beauty supplies addict and devourer of cheese (shocker for a Wisconsin born and bred girl, right?). She's also a bit of a foodie, which is a word most of you hate, we know. She works as hard as she plays - and that includes in the gym! So, you've probably seen her at one of the area's newest restaurant openings (and yes, she will share her opinions good or bad) or enjoying a cold one at a local pub.
All in all, Carolynn's a believer in positive thinking and will do her best to smack down your negative ones while writing about her city, her loves, quests and more.