Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Black Waters

Last night we went to benefit concert held at St. Mary’s to Stop Mountain Top Removal, a form of “strip mining on steroids” that has devastated West Virginia and Eastern Kentucky and is now spreading into other parts of Appalachia . Most people who don’t live there have no idea that it is going on. We heard live mountain music and moving testimony from several people and the evening concluded with a stirring talk by Bobby Kennedy, Jr.

The musical star of the evening was Jean Ritchie , who is still going strong at 85. She played the dulcimer and sang, accompanied by hers sons, Jon and Peter Pickow. The first song she sang was Black Waters which she wrote in 1954, the year I graduated from high school. It was wonderful to hear her.


Grandmère Mimi said...

Allen, when my family visited the Smokey Mountains and the Blue Ridge Mountains, we hard lots of good, live, mountain music. I have a dulcimer which looks very like the one pictured, hearts and everything. It was made by Lynn McSpadden in 1975. I even play a little, or I used to. I haven't for a long time.

I'm sure it was a treat to hear Jean.

It's terrible, terrible what they're doing to the mountains.

Grandmère Mimi said...

I should add that my dulcimer came from the Ozarks. We heard good mountain music there, too.