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Daily Helping for September 10th, 2021 – Stiof

A photo of the musician Stiof, arm casually resting on his harp, standing in a bar and smiling directly into the camera.

Okay, full disclosure. Stiof is one of my closest friends. He’s also a phenomenally talented musician, singer, and songwriter, and until now, I had never seen him perform. So when he invited me to his first gig at a local crêperie, I told him I’d be there with bells on. I didn’t actually show up with bells on, but no one’s perfect. His performance, however, came pretty close.

Stiof plays primarily folk songs on the harp, dulcimer, mandolin, guitar, piano, and kalimba. See what I mean? Phenomenally talented. On the night I saw him, he played mostly covers, including traditional Irish songs and more contemporary selections like Joanna Newsom. However, I have been privy to some of his original works in the past, and believe me when I say they are gorgeous. I can’t wait for his next gig to hopefully hear some of them.

But mostly, I can’t wait for his next gig because I want to hear him play again. On this particular night, he ended with a cover of “Hallelujah” by Leonard Cohen that made me cry. I know it’s pretty easy to make me cry, but that doesn’t make it any less meaningful. I’ve already told Stiof that all I want for my birthday is a recording of that song, but I’m also looking forward to seeing him perform it again. Nothing beats the live experience.

Suggestions for artists I should check out? Please contact me with your ideas. I hope you enjoyed your daily helping of art!