Deepening.  The UUFC’s theme for the year lies in a single word, but this word holds a multitude of meanings. Deepening can mean strengthening, simplifying, purifying, loving, taking a stand…the interpretations are endless. The piano music for the year will have various interpretations of deepening, but today’s selections are quite literal; all of the pieces played today have the words “deep “ or “deeply” in their titles.

Savage Garden was one of the many boy bands hailing from about twenty-five years ago. As a child of the nineties, I always felt drawn to this Australian duo because of the strong keyboard presence in so many of their works, including “Truly Madly Deeply”, this morning’s prelude.  Some of the lyrics seem tailor-made for our new church year:

I will be strong, I will be faithful ’cause I’m counting on a new beginning.
A reason for living. A deeper meaning.

“Truly Madly Deeply”: Official music video by Savage Garden

“How Deep is Your Love” was originally going to be today’s postlude, but Jill inspired a last-minute change.  During her sermon at the 9:30 service, she said, “Deepening does not necessarily mean more“. I realized that this simple but powerful idea could apply to today’s music as well as our daily and spiritual lives, and wondered if a simpler and slower rendition of the Bee Gees’ tune could work as music for meditation.  A few chord changes here and there, a sparser texture, and a more relaxed tempo made this possible.  In the case of this particular song, having less did indeed give a sense of deepening.

“How Deep is your Love?”, performed by the Bee Gees

Since I played “How Deep is Your Love” earlier in the service than planned, the original music for meditation – a sweet and calm ballade-version of “How Deep is the Ocean” – was transformed into an upbeat and caffeinated postlude.  This Irving Berlin tune was popular in the thirties and remains a well-loved tune today, judging from the fellowship members who were singing along at the end of the service!

How Deep is the Ocean, performed by Diana Krall

May we strive for deepening in all the facets of our lives.  Welcome to a new church year!