Chaz Ebert Debuts Song I Remember People, Performed Quarantine-Style by The Chicago Soul Spectacular

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    Chaz Ebert, CEO of Ebert Digital, publisher of the film review website Rogerebert.com, on Thanksgiving Eve has released a song she wrote earlier this year called “I Remember People” to express how she and millions of Americans have been feeling as we have been forced to keep our distance for months due to COVID-19. 

    Ebert admits she never thought the song would see the light of day, because it is about being in lockdown and isolation, and she thought those days would be long gone by now. But with COVID-19 numbers spiking and medical experts advising families not to get together for Thanksgiving, she decided to have it performed and publish it for all to see. 

    “I wanted to send a message that I feel you. We need each other, and help is on the way,” Ebert said.

    She first got the idea for the song on April 4th, 2020, when Ebert was unable to hold an in-person Day4Empathy event, which she started a few years ago to commemorate her late husband Roger Ebert's principle of Empathy. Since the world had come to a screeching halt because of the coronavirus, she wrote an article, instead.

    “If a virus can replicate in a way to insinuate its structure into the bodies and consciousness of almost every human being on this planet, why not a love meme or positive principles like empathy and compassion,” she wrote. “We just have to figure out how to do it in the most kind and loving way imaginable.” 

    At the time, cities were imposing shelter-in-place orders and people were experiencing a new kind of isolation that was magnified by the lockdown. "The longing for human contact was so palpable that my empathic side wanted to create a balm to soothe the loneliness,” she said. 

    In her column, she alluded to a yearning for human warmth, for the sound of a voice, for the sight of a face, for the touch of a handshake, or a good word to make us laugh and know we are not alone. 

    “What language is as universal as a virus?” Chaz says she asked herself. The answer: Music. Ebert enlisted the aid of musician and composer, Chris Nava, son of filmmaker Gregory Nava ("Selena"). Together, they created a bluesy-jazzy, upbeat tune. Ebert then reached out to Rashada Dawan, the Chicago singer and actress who previously portrayed Chaz onstage in two stage plays: “The Black/White Love Play,” the story of Chaz and film critic Roger Ebert, detailing their life together through their courtship, marriage and Roger's untimely death in 2013, at the Black Ensemble Theater, and “The Great Debate: It’s Out of This World,” a play written by Chaz and performed at Victory Gardens Theater. 

    “Since I can't sing, I knew that Rashada would give ‘I Remember People’ just the right interpretation. And, boy, was I right,” Ebert adds. 

    So here, with her band, The Chicago Soul Spectacular is Rashada Dawan performing "I Remember People."

    I Remember People by Chaz Ebert from RogerEbert.com on Vimeo.

    I REMEMBER PEOPLE

    The sound of your voice
    And the sight of your face
    The touch of a handshake
    And the warmth of an embrace
    All the things we took for granted
    Now it's time we recognize
    We all need each other
    To make us laugh and make us cry

    So tell me do you miss me?
    Tell me do you love me?
    Do you want to see me?
    Tell me do you need me?
    I'm saying that I miss you
    You know that I love you
    That I want to see you
    I'm saying that I need you, I need you

    Yes I remember people
    In the sunshine everyday
    Do you remember just who we are?
    And what it means to live in faith

    I remember people
    Walking in the streets, yeah, every day
    I wanna stand out on the corner
    Shouting how glad I am to see your face
    Can we get a little compassion
    A little kindness, faith, and love
    Yeah let's spread some forgiveness
    Give some light to everyone

    So tell me do you miss me?
    Tell me do you love me?
    Do you want to see me?
    Tell me do you need me?
    I'm saying that I miss you
    You know that I love you
    That I want to see you
    I'm saying that I need you, I need you

    Yes I remember people
    Walking in the sunshine everyday
    Do you remember just who we are
    And what it means to live in faith

    Ha!
    Laaalaaa lala laaaa...
    etc.

    I remember people
    I remember you




    Original: https://www.rogerebert.com/chazs-blog/chaz-ebert-debuts-song-i-remember-people
    By: The Editors
    Posted: November 25, 2020, 6:11 pm

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