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Daniel Sperry is creating a CD of his favorite Stafford poems woven in rich tapestries of cellos, piano, and standup bass...
85 backers pledged $6,245 to help bring this project to life.

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I am drawn to poems that are conversational, and speak about the difficulties and blessings of being human in plain terms. That is why William Stafford's poetry has been such a treasure to me. Out of all the poets whose work finds it's way into the spoken word and music evenings I produce, it makes sense that Stafford's work would be the subject of my first CD featuring all of one poet's work. As far as I know ( and I would love to made aware if this is not the case), the process of setting Stafford's work into musical landscapes in this way has not been done before, and my hope is that it will help many more people discover his work and gain the benefit of the deep reflection and delight that his poetry brings. Stafford's poetry has literally changed my life and it can yours, and others, too! With funding from this Kickstarter, I intend to produce a CD of 12-13 poems of William Stafford in the same spoken word style I have used in my earlier CDs, When Your LIfe Becomes Poetry and A Secret Pouch Of Listening. The working title of the album is Cutting Loose, after the Stafford poem of the same name. I will include a number of instruments like grand piano, cello, guitar, pedal steel and other stringed instruments to create an atmosphere of depth and discovery, the hallmarks of Stafford's poetry. The funds will also be used to complete a video of at least one of the poems featuring all the live instruments from the CD recording - a video which will serve as an introduction to this work for presenters and booking agents to be able to offer this program in performing arts centers and theaters around the country. The finished product will be a CD for all Stafford fans to enjoy as well as a video marketing piece for presenters and agents to make this work available to a wider audience than ever before for Stafford's work. Permissions for all the poems have already been obtained, and all the musicians and engineers that will participate on this project have all been lined up. We are ready to go! Just need your support...

Risks and challenges

The main challenge with this project is artistic - to create soundtracks for each poem that deeply reflects the spirit of the work. All the participants, engineers, and musicians have done work like this before, so I have a lot of confidence in the execution. The challenge of creating the music around these poems will be one of the most delightful challenges I have ever given myself - to sink deep into some of the greatest poetry ever written and allow music to come forth that grounds the spirit of it in sound - that is something I really look forward to….

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    MP3 download of five poems from the CD ~ When Your Life Becomes Poetry

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    Receive the CD of When Your Life Becomes Poetry - a compilation of poems by Rumi, Kabir, William Stafford, Naomi Shihab Nye, Billy Collins, and Robert Bly

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Receive the new CD, Cutting Loose, an album of poetry by William Stafford, on the first print run.

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    40 backers
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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    A signed poster of the album cover with a beautiful image of Oregon landscape.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    A "Cutting Loose" Poster and three Daniel Sperry CDs, including When Your LIfe Becomes Poetry and Brothers and Sisters of the Soul

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Skype Concert - A half an hour of music and poetry from Daniel on Skype.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Personal Musical Portrait from Daniel - give as a gift to yourself or someone you love, includes five personalized CDs of the work, with a photo of the subject printed on the CDs.

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    Pledge $1,500 or more About $1,500

    A concert in your home, with a choice of programs: 1) all Stafford poetry with Daniel's music or 2) a diverse program including Rumi, Kabir, Naomi Shihab Nye and others, with Daniel's music woven throughout.

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Funding period

- (40 days)