ROBERT CARLI & TERRY STUART – THE AWESOME MUSIC PROJECT CANADA: SONGS OF HOPE AND HAPPINESS
BOOK REVIEW BY SAMANTHA STEVENS
Robert Carli and Terry Stuart are no strangers to the power of music. Having spent their lives as musicians, Carli and Stuart share their love for the artistic medium through their unique creation, The Awesome Music Project Canada: Songs Of Hope And Happiness. The book celebrates the healing power of music, as well as its ability to remind us of the good times and to comfort us during the bad.
Visually stunning with eye-popping graphics, The Awesome Music Project Canada: Songs of Hope and Happiness is a celebration of that power. There are stories from Canadian musicians including Sarah McLachlan, Chris Hadfield, and Fred Penner, but this book isn’t merely a collection of stories from celebrities. Carli and Stuart went deeper with their approach. They made every effort to include a space for music therapists, journalists, artists, poets, scholars, and everyday music lovers to share their stories about music. Really this book is about connecting. The authors recognize the ability music has to remind us that we are not alone.
This unity is best represented in a motif used throughout the book. The outline of a record on the cover imitates the impression that a beloved old record leaves on a well-worn sleeve. This design choice was no happy accident. A quick flip through the book reveals the same “impression” on each graphic that introduces a story.
The book is organized like a record with major themes divided by “sides.” Each “side” features a wide variety of stories from a plethora of voices. Each story is about a page, a quick read that you can pick up when you need a dose of inspiration or support. There are also quick infographs about music therapy and mental health throughout the book, giving readers an idea of the science behind The Awesome Music Project Canada.
All proceeds from The Awesome Music Project Canada: Songs of Hope and Happiness go to music and mental health research, beginning with the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).