WHY ‘REFUGEE’

My world was blown open in summer 2016 while volunteering at Calais Jungle refugee camp in France. I woke to culture and language completely beyond my understanding, and also the simple power of humans making beauty together – from nothing. It’s an honor to be with people when they have a life-or-death need for ‘perspective’ – that perspective mostly gotten through tenacity, openness and wit. Through these people who had become refugees, I understood how deeply connected we billions of humans are, and how little we may know of each other.

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I walked in fear for the first hours in the Calais Jungle – could I be chewed up by the sharp-eyed need and anger I’d heard about? Being with my EAR (Expressive Arts Refuge) team showed me how to invite trust – mostly through music – while guiding ourselves through conflict. We shared some time in the Jungle with The (London-based) Calais Sessions, who produced an incredible, award-winning album collaborating with refugee musicians. Their project – a combination of expert professional music recording, musical arranging and generous camaraderie – affected me deeply. When this song, ‘REFUGEE’ came tumbling out of me, I knew I would reach out to them to be part of it. Similarly, it became clear that my old friends Leah and Chloe Smith, of Rising Appalachia were perfect, fierce voices to bring in.

My song, REFUGEE is about feeling bereft and misunderstood. We are all much closer to being refugees than we want to imagine. Realizing this may remind us of our humanity – especially those of us who have relatively plenty. Lately, ‘Refugee’ is the only song I feel like singing – mostly because of the raw, calling voice it asks of me, and its un-sentimental plea for compassion. I have some hope that a resolute song can touch our hearts and change us.

The video of REFUGEE came from hearing first-hand stories of unbelievable journeys. These were journeys across enormous distances and danger – mostly by walking and by boat – in many cases alone. It also came from watching young men and women grapple with belonging and self expression in the tense, dangerous limbo of the refugee camps. It also came from watching my new friends – who were left with so little – give everything – especially of their hearts. You hear about this, but to experience it first hand…changes everything that comes after.

This year, in the Greek Skaramagas Refugee Camp, I walked with greater confidence into sharing songs with Syrian, Kurdish, Afghani and Iraqi kids and meeting the musicians in the camp who were refugees also. I felt again how our little songs and lessons, hugs and even moments of disciplining slowly built a cautious trust in all of us – and a willingness to let wildness and joy peer through the anxiety and suffering.

  

Link to Online
Press Kit

Buy the Single
via BandCamp
All Proceeds benefit UN High Commissioner for Refugees
 

Buy the Single
via CD Baby
FULL ALBUM AVAILABLE SOON
 

Buy “Refugee”
Sheet Music

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30 May 2017

CA Folklife Tour + Premiere @ Disney Hall + LA Concerts + Summer Festivals

Hello!  It’s softest green and birdsong here in Vermont. I’ve enjoyed landing here into family and new beginnings.  Next week I begin 3 months of musical travels.  A month in my beloved California, a month around the U.S. and Canada, then to the Skaramagas Refugee Camp in Greece to volunteer and teach.  I’ll be with VOCO, Jayme Stone’s Folklife, The...
23 March 2017

Folklife CD Release Tour!!

Music for YOU this & next week in MI,IL,WI,MN,IA,NJ,NY,CT,VT,MA    Hello there! Tour these next two weeks to MI,IL,WI,MN,IA,NJ,NY,CT,VT and MA!  (and on into 2017) Last night the Folklife Project began our CD Release Tour! Led by my friend, the ‘Yo Yo Ma of the banjo’, Jayme Stone, this tour’s concerts feature the twelve new songs – musical heirlooms – from our...

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Wonderful World of Song: Harmony, Vocal Color and Movement for Everyone
Moira travels the world-wide network of choral music to create joyous, deeply musical singing experiences. She has traveled and listened widely, and has always been drawn back to the power of the folksong, body percussion and harmony. Moira's articulate and gentle approach will have you singing with full breath & relaxation, and your ear sharpened for style & timbre! Moira quickly gets a group singing by ear as well as by music reading - you will experience four-part harmony, singing in other languages, improvising and moving. [; Repertoire from folk / new music of: Eastern Europe, Appalachia, Americana, Irish/Scots, Moira's compositions ];
You do not need to prepare in advance - just come with open ears and your voice, in whatever shape you find it!!
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Your Wild and Colorful Voice: A Workshop with Moira Smiley

February 4, 2017, 10:00am - February 4, 2017, 10:00am

Wonderful World of Song: Harmony, Vocal Color and Movement for Everyone Moira travels the world-wide network of choral music to create joyous, deeply musical singing experiences. She has traveled and listened widely, and has always been drawn back to the power of the folksong, body percussion and harmony. Moira's articulate and gentle approach will have you singing with full breath & relaxation, and your ear sharpened for style & timbre! Moira quickly gets a group singing by ear as well as by music reading - you will experience four-part harmony, singing in other languages, improvising and moving. [; Repertoire from folk / new music of: Eastern Europe, Appalachia, Americana, Irish/Scots, Moira's compositions ]; You do not need to prepare in advance - just come with open ears and your voice, in whatever shape you find it!!

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Albums

  • Laughter Out of Tearsicon-downloadicon-download
    1. Dream Outro // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    2. They’re Red Hot // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    3. Steam Engines // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    4. Whistle Daughter Whistle // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    5. Orphan Girl // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    6. Oh Winter // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    7. Oj Savice // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    8. Oj Jabuko // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    9. Deportee // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    10. Dream Dve Nevesti // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    11. Blow Blow Thou Winter Wind // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    12. Mazurka // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    13. I Live in California // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    14. North Country // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    15. Chilly Winds // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    16. Visa Fran Jarna // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
    17. Dream Intro // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  • circle, square, diamond and flagicon-downloadicon-download
    1. Stand in That River // moira smiley & VOCO - circle, square, diamond and flag
    2. Africa // circle, square, diamond and flag
    3. Wondrous Love // circle, square, diamond and flag
    4. Parting Friends // moira smiley & VOCO - circle, square, diamond and flag
    5. The Cuckoo // circle, square, diamond and flag
    6. Return My Soul // circle, square, diamond and flag
    7. Garden Hymn // circle, square, diamond and flag
    8. Bring Me Little Water, Silvy // circle, square, diamond and flag
    9. Carolina Pines // circle, square, diamond and flag
  • blinkicon-downloadicon-download
    1. Stand in That River // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    2. Esik Eso // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    3. Utopia // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    4. Al Proci // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    5. How Can I Cry // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    6. The Boat BP // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    7. Our Time / Shout // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    8. Long Time Travelin’ // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    9. Katie Cruel // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    10. A Sto Cemo // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    11. Dance S’loyfn, S’yogn // blink
    12. I Live in California // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    13. Deep Blue // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    14. Tryptophan Hand Jive // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    15. Firecracker Girl // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    16. Dying Californian // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
    17. Bartok #148 // moira smiley & VOCO - blink
  • ruaicon-downloadicon-download
    1. Katie Cruel // moira smiley - rua
    2. Grey Shore // moira smiley - rua
    3. A Man Was Born // moira smiley - rua
    4. Stand in That River // moira smiley - rua
    5. Charlie Piggot’s / Sporting Pitchfork // moira smiley - rua
    6. Parting Glass // moira smiley - rua
    7. Queen Jane // moira smiley - rua
    8. House That Jack Built // moira smiley - rua
    9. Hawk and Crow / Monaghan Twig // moira smiley - rua
    10. Donal Og // moira smiley - rua
  • small worldsicon-downloadicon-download
    1. Rano (Early Morn’ Mikrokosmos) // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    2. Out of A Child // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    3. Zelena (Green Mikrokosmos) // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    4. The Hat // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    5. Makedonska // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    6. Summer Has Come // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    7. Silverlake // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    8. Siberia’s Snows (Russia) // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    9. Izgrejala (Gel Moma) // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
    10. Szerelem // moira smiley & VOCO - small worlds
  • changing woman
    1. Fall: Final Snake Song // changing woman
    2. Fall: Song Of An Initiate // changing woman
    3. Summer: Summer Sultry // changing woman
    4. Summer: Poem To The Mother // changing woman
    5. Summer: Earthly Light // changing woman
    6. Spring: Resolution Snake Song // changing woman
    7. Spring: Cage Music // changing woman
    8. Spring: Playground // changing woman
    9. Winter: Mirror Play // changing woman
    10. Spring: The Thawing // changing woman
    11. Winter: Snake Song // changing woman
    12. Winter: Sage Woman’s Dance // changing woman
    13. Winter: Maskes And Echoes // changing woman
    14. Winter: Trees // changing woman
    15. Winter: Snow // changing woman
    16. Fall: Tres Morillas // changing woman
    17. Spring: Spring Snake Song // changing woman
    18. Fall: Our Time Is Near // changing woman
    19. Winter: Opening Snake Song // changing woman
    20. Summer: Mama Hey // changing woman

Latest Videos

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Live in Concert!
Dream Outro // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
icon-downloadicon-download
  1. Dream Outro // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  2. They’re Red Hot // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  3. Steam Engines // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  4. Whistle Daughter Whistle // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  5. Orphan Girl // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  6. Oh Winter // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  7. Oj Savice // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  8. Oj Jabuko // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  9. Deportee // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  10. Dream Dve Nevesti // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  11. Blow Blow Thou Winter Wind // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  12. Mazurka // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  13. I Live in California // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  14. North Country // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  15. Chilly Winds // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  16. Visa Fran Jarna // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears
  17. Dream Intro // moira smiley & VOCO - Laughter Out of Tears