Archive for dance party erupts during quaker meeting for worship

Max Carter on Jon Watts’ Video

Posted in Bull and Mouth Records, Quakerism with tags , , , , , on October 28, 2009 by Jon Watts
Max Carter, Director of Friends Center at Guilford College

Max Carter, Director of Friends Center at Guilford College

I am not adept at most of the modern social networking devices. No Blackberry or cell phone, even. At the insistence of Friends Center staff and students, there is a Facebook account with my name attached – for purposes of getting the word out on campus ministry programs. But I don’t know how to operate it.

Thus, I was unaware of a YouTube video that recently went “viral” – at least in proportion to Quaker numbers – until friends referred me to it. The video shows 2006 QLSP graduate Jon Watts rising in the silence of worship in the Barn at Pendle Hill. His vocal ministry turns into a “rap” about Quaker history and theology, focusing on the diversity…

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‘Dance Party’ Reflections – Two Months Later

Posted in Pendle Hill, Performance, Quakerism, Spirituality, The Art of Fully Being with tags , , on October 9, 2009 by Jon Watts

Three months ago I traveled to the Sierra Friends Center in California to take a break from the spotlight… I had been traveling in the ministry and performing all over Philadelphia Yearly Meeting for two months.  It was my intention to get some rest and do some discernment about my next steps, including some experimentation with internet outreach.

While on tour in PYM the previous April, I had arranged for a short filming session for what was to be my first music video, set to my most blatantly Quakerism-oriented song, “Friend Speaks My Mind”.  Now, four and a half months after that afternoon filming session, filmmaker Ben Schilling sent the final edit.  Great… we released it on youtube, hoping it would get a bit more attention than the videos already posted, all wavering around 100 views.

I returned from camping with my brother and his family the next day to find the video had 1,500 views overnight.  In a week it would have 8,000.  I had an inbox full of emails from all over the United States and England – from all sorts of folks… Friends missing Pendle Hill and joyful to see it depicted, other artists wanting to introduce themselves, old f/Friends who I hadn’t connected with in years.  One email was from a Pee Wee Herman-esque talk show host in Italy…

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