George Hartner shares with us today a song and video he created which is perfect for this Valentine's Day. George explains how it came about:
A couple of years ago my friend and the very talented musician, Steve Forbert was in town to perform a show in Wilmington. At that point, Steve and I had just met and he was spending the night at my house. Towards the end of the evening over a slowly fading fire in my backyard, Steve asked me the question, "Hey George, what about Houdini?"
It seemed like a very random question, but as I was getting to know Steve better, you had better be ready to have conversations that quickly take you from one interesting topic to another.
I told him that I knew very little about Houdini beyond the fact that he was a great magician, escape artist, and illusionist. Steve's reply was simply, "Yeah, well maybe we need to look into him a bit further."
That simple question and follow up remark set me on a journey....I started looking into the life of Harry Houdini and what he was all about.
What I didn't expect to find however was a beautiful love story that goes something like this: Houdini was pretty convinced that he was probably not going to outlive the love of his life, his wife Bess. After all, this business of getting tied up in chains, handcuffed inside a box and thrown into rivers has a way of potentially shortening one's lifespan. So Houdini said that he and Bess should have a code between them that only the two of them knew. That way, if Houdini died he could come back from the great beyond and deliver the code to Bess and therefore she would know he had pulled off the greatest feat of all time--to transcend death itself.
The code was the simple phrase, "Rosabelle Believe." Sure enough, Houdini died before Bess and whether or not he delivered the code is the subject of much speculation. After all, just like his great illusions we all want to believe in the power of magic and the ability to reconnect after we are forced to say our final goodbyes to those we love.
I wrote the song and assembled some very talented musicians to perform it along with me. It features Dorothy Papadakos on piano, Jessica Landes on violin, Roger Manning on percussion, Trent Harrison on bass, and was recorded at Hourglass Studios. And to put some icing on the cake, the company Cassian Films decided that they would like to do a film around it starring the wonderful actors Sara Lucas and Craig Woolard.
I hope you enjoy the song, the film, and the whole mystical journey.