SPOTLIGHT ON THE SONG: YOU REAP WHAT YOU SOW
with Artist Mara Levine
The right words speak volumes. The right words set to music have the power to change lives. The right song evokes emotions and actions. A great song is one that will transcend time and generation.
Every artist looks for those special songs that will impact the listeners beyond just the toe-tapping tune.
Folk and bluegrass artist Mara Levine, who recently joined Bell Buckle Records, found such a song in her newest radio release, “You Reap What You Sow,” written by Susan Shann.
“I picked up two CDs from Susan at the SERFA (Southeastern Regional Chapter of Folk Alliance International) conference in Montreat, North Carolina,” explains Mara. The message of this song caught her attention. “The chorus struck me immediately, and I feel both lines together send a powerful message.”
You reap what you sow so you’d better plan wisely
That the harvest may yield you a bounty of good,
You get what you give, so give completely
And all your deeds will return as they should.
It most certainly is a powerful message. It makes one think twice about the impact of his or her actions. Mara elaborated, “The entire song resonated with me as a positive message about doing your best at whatever you do and reaping the rewards or fruits of your labors. I also interpret the song to mean caring for others and nurturing relationships, in particular, keeping your word and your commitments and that this will be returned to you in kind. I think the message of caring and being kind to each other is so very relevant today.”
Mara knew right away that this was one of “those songs” – the songs that have universal appeal. She described it as “uplifting” with a lovely melody. “I love to invite audience participation and the chorus was catchy, sing-able and the entire song connected with me as coming from a positive place.”
With wonderful arrangements, backed by some of the best bluegrass musicians including Bob Harris, Rob Ickes, Andy Leftwich, Mark Schatz, and Scott Vestal, and beautiful vocal harmonies by Greg Blake and Molly O’Brien, you will find yourself humming along with this catchy tune. You will find yourself thinking about the lyrics long after the last chord has ended.
This song is important to Mara in her own life as she practices the concept of reaping what you sow. In the competitive world of music, she has done a significant amount of volunteer work, supporting other musicians, mentoring them, encouraging them, and educating them. “I have seen that these actions and my non-competitive and nurturing behavior has helped to create a network of friends who, in turn, have been supportive in kind,” she expressed.
Mara hopes that through this song, especially during this time, listeners will be encouraged to care for others and support each other, regardless of their differences.
During the pandemic, Mara and Valerie Smith, owner of Bell Buckle Records, opted to use that time to create a music video for the song, which was filmed on a pick-your-own sunflower farm, with each artist contributing self-shot videos, and re-released it through Bell Buckle Records. Les Butler, of Butler Music Group and Family Music Group, is promoting “You Reap What You Sow” to Southern Gospel and Bluegrass Gospel audiences in conjunction with the re-release.
Les had this to say, “This song and this voice was a breath of fresh air from the moment I heard ‘You Reap What You Sow.’ I am honored to represent Mara and this song as a single to Gospel radio worldwide!”
“You Reap What You Sow” has already experienced success on the FAI Folk Chart and Bluegrass Today Grassicana Chart and is sure to draw in both Southern Gospel and Bluegrass Gospel fans as well.
Be sure to check out Mara Levine on Facebook at www.facebook.com/marascreations and watch her music video at https://youtu.be/1qQ0mR4Smu8.
DJs can download at: https://airplaydirect.com/music/maralevine/
Mara Levine’s website is https://maralevine.com/
Bell Buckle Records: https://bellbucklerecords.com/
Butler Music Group: https://www.butlermusicgroup.com
“You Reap What You Sow” is written by Susan Shann (Mystic’s Mantra Music, ASCAP). Mara Levine has obtained a sync license from Susan B Shann, license available on request.