I have now been working with a new band that I am super happy and super excited to be working with so far, and this seems to be a mutual thing for them as well. :) I do still have one issue that I'm kind of stuck on, though, and I wanted to post it here and see what my friends here think.
I'm still stuck on the Rede song that I mentioned before (the Wiccan Rede). They really want me to add to it, and there are certain lines of it I really don't want to sing. Which are of course the exact lines that need harmony vocals in my voice range more than anything else in the song. *sigh*
I've listened more carefully, and the song itself is mostly not something I would be opposed to at all. The basic premise is that being polyamorous and pagan doesn't hurt anybody, so if that's what works for you, go for it. That it itself I can totally get behind. It's just the way some of it is worded that I take issue with.
Oddly enough, the verses I have no problem with at all, and there's a pre-chorus that I'm totally happy with, lyrically speaking. It's the chorus itself where the lyrics go where I do not want to go, at least not with my voice.
It is a song that has already been released (The Rede by Gaia Consort), so if anyone has it, you can probably follow it easily enough. As I said, basic premise, verses, and pre-chorus I'm all good with. Chorus itself not so much. They repeat the actual Wiccan Rede at the beginning and at the end ("an it harm none, do what you will"), which really really isn't my thing. I personally found this to be a total utter failure as a system of ethical guidance. It did inspire a different way of looking at things than what I had been taught as a kid, and it was a step up, but given how low the bar is when we're talking about what I was taught as a kid, that really isn't saying much. I still found it to be abysmally lacking as an actual system of ethics.
And there's the line "As the circle has bound us, bound we are still". Oh boy do I have problems with that. I don't take binding in magic lightly; I have done it for protective purposes, but I don't find it something to be taken lightly. Plus, I've done quite a bit of removal of energetic cords, which can result from inappropriate binding; not cool. I also don't really find it fulfilling to cast circles, and I don't like the idea of needing a cast circle in order to feel like you're in sacred space (I know they didn't say that here, but I could see some people understanding it that way; the circle does seem to be meant to symbolize sacred space in my interpretation of this line).
Melodically, the line with the circle could go without a higher harmony and the chorus wouldn't necessarily sound off balance. Both of the times they actually say the Rede, though, it is almost begging for a high harmony. And there are only 2 women in the band, I have the higher voice, and the other one is already doing the main melody on this.
I had thought about just doing something with my harp instead, but the chorus itself is really where the band is coming together vocally, and missing a voice really does stand out. I've also thought about just doing vocables, particularly vocables that have some assonance with the words (ah during "an it harm one", for example). But that also sounds lame and limited, and there really aren't good English vocables for things like "will", "circle" or "bound".
I also thought about changing the words just for me, but a) I think people would notice, and b) that would make it a derivative of the original song, which the band is doing because the guy who wrote it is a friend who went atheist and won't do his Pagan catalog any more, but has a great one and wants other pagans to be able to continue to benefit from it. And our band is full of poly pagans, so this song would be great, if there wasn't a nit-picky CR for the soprano. :)
And I thought about just singing the actual Rede part, as being ok in this one specific context, even though I still find it lacking as an ethical system in general. Part of me feels like that's selling out, though.
I really do want to support the band, but I also really don't want to sing stuff I really don't agree with. Does anyone here have any suggestions?
(I'm deliberately not posting this to Facebook because my bandmates are over there, but not here :) )
Update 1/8/12, almost midnight: I just wrote to the band directly about this. Wish me luck.