The Course of Reason

Music Monday: A Special Live Edition of “Saved,” by Shelley Segal

May 13, 2013

segal album A few weeks ago, I heard that Shelley Segal was planning to perform at CFI–Northeast Ohio, and I contacted them, on a whim, to see if she might be able to extend her trip to join us at CFI's headquarters in Amherst, New York. We worked with her awesome tour manager, Natalie, and ended up putting on a last-minute, but very successful, performance with Shelley at a local coffee shop. 

Shelley has been featured on a previous Music Monday, where Cody writes about how he discovered her music on the r/atheistmusic subreddit. (Weird. I didn't even know that subreddit existed.) 

Anyway, Shelley put on a fantastic live show at Spot Coffee. She opened with a cover of Phil Ochs' "When I'm Gone," a beautiful piece of music that I always found atheistic. (And much better than Eminem's version.) Phil Ochs' lyrics reveal a humanistic look at the finite nature of human life, and embrace living life to the fullest:

Can't live proud enough to die when I'm gone
So I guess I'll have to do it while I'm here

Shelley mostly played her own original songs, including some from her new jazz album Little March, recorded with Adam Levy. I caught an iPhone video of her single "Saved," a song that has become an anthem of sorts for the freethought movement. My favorite line: "You think it's any of your business what goes on between my thighs?"

Shelley's lyrics are especially relevant in light of the fast-approaching Women in Secularism 2 conference, hosted by CFI in DC this weekend. Many of Shelley's songs from An Atheist Album embrace exactly what this conference is about, including her recent Efat, a song she was inspired to write after hearing Maryam Namazie speak about the unrealistic and inhumane expectations religions place on women. Maryam Namazie is one of many speakers who will be at Women in Secularism 2.

As always, if you get a chance, send your suggestions for future Music Mondays to Cody at, leave a comment below, or @tweet us at @CFIOnCampus. Your suggestions, along with future and past songs, may end up in the official Course of Reason Music Monday Spofity playlist that anyone can listen to.    



About the Author: Sarah Kaiser

Sarah Kaiser's photo

Sarah Kaiser is a field organizer for CFI On Campus. Prior to her work at CFI, she got her start in the freethought movement as the co-founder and president of the Secular Alliance at Indiana University, where she helped organize a nationally recognized atheist bus ad campaign and large campus speaking events. As an atheist, a feminist, and a small part of the universe's way of understanding itself, she is thrilled at the chance to help advance CFI's mission. On Twitter: @sarahebkaiser.




Guests may not post URLs. Registration is free and easy.

Remember my personal information

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Enter the word that goes in the blank: CFI is short for "Center ___ Inquiry"

Creative Commons License

The Course of Reason is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

CFI blog entries can be copied or distributed freely, provided:

  • Credit is given to the Center for Inquiry and the individual blogger
  • Either the entire entry is reproduced or an excerpt that is considered fair use
  • The copying/distribution is for noncommercial purposes