The Deer Hunter is the man who can fix anything. I swear it doesn't matter what is tore up he can figure out a way to make it work like new. Sometimes I think he's MacGyver-remember him from tv?
Unlike most musicians we don't own a sound system so we're always at the mercy of whoever we're playing for and often have to just make the best with what's available. At a recent show they were one vocal mic short which meant Paul or Chatter one would have to play and sing into the same microphone. The gentleman helping out thought he saved the day by finding another stand in the back until we noticed it was missing the mic holder. Oh well we all said, we'll make do.
Before I knew what was going on The Deer Hunter followed the man back to the room where he found the extra stand to see if he could find something else that might work. When he failed to find anything he taped the microphone to the stand allowing the audience to hear Paul's amazing flat top picking as well as his beautiful voice. I said "Where in the world did you get the tape?" The Deer Hunter said "I had it on the handle of my knife, all I had to do was take two pieces off." See what I mean about MacGyver? Who carries tape on their knife handle just in case?
I know there are resourceful people like The Deer Hunter all over the world, but it seems my area of Appalachia is chock full of them: folks that can figure out how to fix things with what they have on hand and I'm mighty glad to be married to one of those people.
p.s. The Pressley Girls will be playing Saturday June 10, 2017 @ 8:00 p.m. at Vogel State Park - Blairsville GA.
I've been noticing a clump of weeds just out the backdoor. The green bunch is growing right in the portion of gravel that leads you to the back steps.
Even though it's in the way, for some reason I've kept ignoring it choosing to walk awkwardly around it instead of pulling it up.
I was beginning to think I had another fairy tale on my hands. Every time I passed that way I felt the small plant nudging open the file cabinet in my brain, but I could never get the drawer it was in open until today.
As I side-stepped the plant on my way down to the garden I realized what it was trying to tell me.
The skinny spiky top heavy stems were trying to remind me of long recesses at Martins Creek Elementary School and of a group of sweet girls who played together, argued together, and made bracelets, necklaces, and crowns from narrow leaf plantain stems.
p.s. It was way back in 2012 when I shared my own personal fairy tale with you here on the Blind Pig and The Acorn-would you like to hear it again?
p.s.s. The Pressley Girls will be playing Saturday June 3, 2017 @ 1:30 p.m. Art, River & Music Festival - Murphy NC and on Saturday June 10, 2017 @ 8:00 p.m. Vogel State Park - Blarisville GA.
Over 1200 elementary students recently watched a professional theatre show at a college in Appalachia.
Students working hard to better the lives of their families and ours.
hoe down noun A type of lively dance or music; by extension a noisy, lively square dance, usu with a string band supplying the music, the event occasionally accompanied by drinking. Joseph Hall participated in and recorded a number of these events varying from just good fun to hilarious occasions, providing excellent recreation and graceful creativity for both the musicians and the dancers. They are an outstanding part of traditional mountain life.
~Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English
The hoe down tradition is still going strong in my area of Appalachia. Last Saturday the girls and I helped out at a hoe down at a nearby elementary school. Fun was had by all!
The old saying cute as a speckled pup is still alive and well in Appalachia - especially when a pretty girl is holding a seven week old puppy and it falls asleep.
Chitter made me the afghan in the photo for Christmas. I'm telling you the girl can crochet , well actually both girls can crochet. Chatter gifted me with a beautiful scarf she made out of the softest yarn.
Granny's mother Gazzie loved to crochet and she passed that love on to Granny. I've told you plenty of times before, Granny is crochet crazy. She spins out things faster than we can keep track of them or find a place to put them.
Granny taught the girls to crochet and they've stuck with it. Pap used to get so tickled at them. We'd go somewhere to perform and while we were waiting to go on stage they'd pull out whatever they were working on and start crocheting. He said "They really are like two little grannies."
Granny is always telling me I'll be sorry I never let her teach me to crochet and someday it'll be too late. Even though I never picked up the skill, I sure am glad the girls did. Three generations of crocheters is pretty cool if you ask me. And if you count my cousin Tina who is my age and learned from Granny Gazzie-that makes 4 generations which is even cooler.
In Appalachia we have helicopter pilots who criss cross the mountains ferrying folks who are in need to hospitals which are capable of filling those needs. We also have little boys who think whirlybirds and the people who drive them are pretty cool.
Granny will plant seeds anywhere she can spot an empty piece of ground, which results in things like greenbeans growing on her mop handle.
The girls had the opportunity to help skim as sorghum syrup was being made at the Burnette Farm in Haywood County NC. I've seen the process of making syrup at the festival over in Blarisville GA, but seeing a family make sorghum syrup as they do every year was a wonderful experience.
David Burnette, who owns the farm, explained the process from the planting of the sorghum in early May all the way to the making of the syrup at the end of the growing season. He discussed the various names folks call the syrup as well. He often calls it molasses, even though the jars he and and his wife sell say sorghum syrup. Mr. Burnette admitted it could get confusing, since true molasses is made from sugar cane which is a totally different plant than sorghum. But as he said, it's hard to change what you grew up calling it.
Pap simply called it syrup. When I was growing up there was always a jar of local honey on the table and a jar of syrup. Pap and I liked the stronger taste of the sorghum syrup and Granny and the boys liked the milder taste of honey.
The Burnette family opens up their farm for several weekends during sorghum syrup making season. Anyone can drop by eat a big bait of food from the potluck table, learn about the process of making sorghum syrup, and even get to listen to some mighty fine pickin and grinnin while waiting for the syrup to boil down.
Are you a fan of sorghum syrup? What do you call it?