I hope to bring you peace. I hope to bring you joy.  G-d knows we need this.  I need this.  I have already made three cherry pies this summer.  One more trip like last week’s Helsinki debacle and I will be opening a bakery.

It is time to flip off the internal switch, the one that monitors the world and our place among the nations, and take a short break. Allow me to provide the soundtrack for this quick escape from reality.

Just as there are no bad covers of the Rolling Stones Gimme Shelter, there are any number of wonderful musical performances inspired by German poet Friedrich Schiller’s 1785 Ode to Joy.  The first and most famous was the final movement of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony.  Many have followed with a variety of musical instruments and styles.  I have provided a few below.

I hope that one of them brings you a moment of respite. I hope that at least one of these brings you joy.

Folsom Symphony and Sacramento Master Singers

Pete Seeger

Ritchie Blackmore

Joe Jackson