Gaia's Voice

Gaia's Voice News - Summer 1997

Welcome to the second issue of Gaia's Voice's new newsletter. In this issue we have news of past events including the birth of a new Gaia's Baby and recording progress for our new recording "Passions and Passages." We include a listing of upcoming Gaia's Voice events, including the announcement of Gaia's Voice tenth anniversary party. Finally we present the text and history of Laurel's "What a Friend We have in Kali."

The newsletter will be available both in Email and US mail form, and will also be available on our web site It is cheaper for us to send using Email but we are happy to send US mail to those who prefer that, or who do not have an Email address. Please inform us if you wish to be added to or deleted from one of the lists.

Contact Information for Gaia's Voice

Mailing Address

Gaia's Voice
2140 Shattuck Avenue, Number 2093
Berkeley, California 94704


Past Events

Gaia's Voice has been very active in the business of providing music and taking the lead in various ritual and performance events. Over the last few months we performed a benefit concert for our new tape, a concert at Pantheacon and provided music at the NROOGD Beltane ritual. We also sang at a Spiral Path ordination for two priestesses, for a Brigid ritual and finally, reaching all the way to Los Angeles, sang a campfire concert for Pacific Circle.

I found a wonderful friend, Grace Severtson, who agreed to open her home for a small living room concert in Corte Madera. More people attended from East Bay than from Marin, even though more people from Marin bought tickets or sent donations. We made over $380 to add to our New Tape Production fund. Thanks to all and everyone who came to support this effort or donated. Thanks to chorus members as well for providing food and drink and other supplies as well as their music in song. The concert was a success and well worth the work we put into it.


New Gaia's Baby

The Gaia's Voice family has grown again! Alexander Galen Barks joins the ever expanding gaggle of Gaia's Kids! Born June 17th at 1:09 p.m. Alec is the second child of former Gaia's Voice tenor, Don Barks, and Gaia's Voice seamstress extraordinaire Sue McCullough.

Longtime Gaia's Kid Kenton Barks is taking his role as big brother to heart and has become very good at holding his little brother. Mom, Dad, big brother, baby and Aunties are all doing great!

Recording Progress

Gaia's Voice's upcoming recording "Passions and Passages." is now recorded and is being mixed (the addition of the new baby--Alexander-- to the household of our recording engineer has slowed things up a bit). Due to the generosity of our friends and supporters, $2000 of the $2500 we need for production has been raised through donations and advance sales--though financial help is still needed for the remaining $500. With luck and the continuing help from our friends, "Passions and Passages" will be available (on cassette and CD) by October.

Gaia's Voice Tenth Anniversary Party

We are planning a party for GV's tenth anniversary for 7:30pm Nov 8 at BFUU. We would like to gather up as many old GV members as possible as well as friends of GV, so spread the word.

Upcoming Gaia's Voice Events

What a friend we have in Kali

Lyrics copyright Laurel Olson, 1996
Tune: What a friend we have in Jesus

    What a friend we have in Kali,
    All our sins and griefs to eat.
    Kali's always pretty jolly.
    And She is our Mother sweet.

    She transforms the dead to living
    And brings us on through death again.
    Hail the Mystery eternal,
    Hail Kali, the seekers friend.

    Have we trials and temptations?
    Is there trouble anywhere?
    Kali is our true salvation.
    Death is always pretty fair.


    Cry Kali unto the nations.
    Speak Her name in every home.
    Kali needs no explanation.
    She gives souls the leave to roam.


I was asked by one of the folks I met at an LA area gathering the chorus recently attended:

`So, where did you get the (expletive), not to mention the idea, to write "What a Friend We Have in Kali"?' I told her it would take too long right then to explain, but I would get back with her. I didn't. (Bad Laurel, no biscuit). Until now. You see, she gets this newsletter. So...

It all began one day, in the middle of 1992. The idea struck me as I was thinking about a host of odd things, the list of which included:

It grew and became the first verse of "What a Friend We Have in Kali" late in 1992, just when I was taking a Dark Goddess class from Chris Rossi. Friends who heard the first verse wanted more. They wanted a whole song to Kali written to the old shape-note hymn tune. I did too, but it just didn't come to me. And frankly, in late 1992 and all of 1993, I didn't have the time to chase after it. So the lone verse remained alone until mid 1994, when I was approached again with a request for a full song. I wrote the second verse at that time. That seemed to satisfy the querant and I promised to get back to her with a third verse. I did mean to write a third verse. Really.

Then there was this Hymn-Filk Contest at a gathering I was attending late in the summer of 1996. This finally pushed me to finish the piece off with the third verse. The song tied for first place, so I guessed it probably was ready to face the larger community.

In late 1996 or early 1997 Gaia's Voice decided the group could perform it. And so, we did.


Gaia's Voice Gladly Accepts Donations

As a service to the Pagan community, most of our performances are free. We value our many opportunities to share and contribute to the pivotal moments of those around us. To that end, we depend upon the generosity of our community to continue.

Where Your Donation Goes

Gaia's Voice is organized as a 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Corporation. All donations are tax-deductible.

Please send your donations to:

Gaia's Voice
2140 Shattuck Avenue, Number 2093
Berkeley, California 94704

Gaia's Voice Newsletter
Editor: Stephen.
Newsletter committee: Marie, Gareth, Andy.
Due date for material for Winter1997 issue: Nov 14, 1997
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