Usually, when I begin writing these monthly essays, I have a pretty good idea as to how they will be structured. The beginning and end are clear, and all that I need to do is fill up the space in between. But March was different, in so many ways. If there was one thought that permeated the time, it had to be the continuing devastation in Ukraine.
Tales of grief and woe, as well as ominous portents, made themselves known through stories on television, in print, and via internet. Amid efforts to censor and exaggerate, a portrait of our mad world became clear. I spent this month working and taking a bit of time off in Europe. Getting perspective away from home is always useful and, for a change, much of the world seemed in agreement regarding the crisis. Where it all fell apart was coming to solutions.
Musicians are wondering what they can do in the wake of the brutal invasion of Ukraine. And the answer is, not much. With my father’s side of the family being from that region of the world, this provocation hits close to home. My friends, Russian and Ukrainian alike, are distraught and united in their support of those being attacked.
I guess no one can really understand how a conflict such as this can occur in the 21st century. Images of 1939 are flashing before our eyes as a tyrant once again attempts to dominate the world scene. And woe to those who dare to oppose him. Will we stand idly by as this blatant breach of world norms continues? Is there anything other than wishful thinking that can take place?