Simone Forti – Hippie Gospel Songs 10“



Limited Edition blue 10″ in illustrated gatefold-sleeve including 16-page color book with sheet music scored by Charlemagne Palestine.

Postmodern artist, dancer, choreographer, and writer Simone Forti originally wrote the Hippie Gospel Songs in 1969/70, around the time of the Woodstock Festival.

“These songs came to me around the time of the Woodstock Festival. Before coming to California where I started working and performing with Charlemagne Palestine and studying Tai Chi at the California Institute of the Arts, I had spent a year in Woodstock, New York, stoned in the woods. Now with Charlemagne at the piano I ran in circles and figure eights. At first I was performing stoned but at some point stopped doing that. The one song in Italian translates:

“I’m awaiting a song from afar, from afar, a song of goodbye from afar. For now I’ve seen the game I was playing, slowly leaving the earth and drifting far among the stars.”

I grew up singing Italian folk songs, and when my father had a bout with cancer, the Ocean Song quite naturally came to me, as did Lullaby to an Ant, which I sang to an ant that I saved out of my parents’ swimming pool.

These songs were quite separate from the dancing with Charlemagne’s playing except for the one asking if we had flown to earth, which to this day I sometimes sing while running in figure-eights. When Charlemagne scored my songs for me I was amazed to see them on paper in a spiral notebook. Studying Tai Chi with Marshall Ho’o was a very big influence on me, as was the I Ching. The Wanderer, with fire above and mountain below, is one of the hexagrams. I mainly sang my songs while driving in my blue car, The Blue Angel, back and forth among the orange groves between CalArts and the nearby town of Piru. I eventually drove The Blue Angel across the country and sold it for one dollar in Halifax, Nova Scotia.”

–Simone Forti, 2017

The seven songs on the record were recorded in 2012 during Forti’s exhibition Sounding at The Box, Los Angeles. This Box Editions release on 10″ blue vinyl features an etching of Forti’s Illuminations Drawing (1972) on side B and is accompanied by a 16-page color book with images of the original sheet music scored by artist, musician, and Forti’s long-time collaborator Charlemagne Palestine.