Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Bluegrass Lesson # 1
Romancing the Rural
The single most potent symbol of bluegrass music is the old homestead. Sitting high on a hill overlooking the valley below, the log cabin or farm house represents the heart of the rural family. It was here, on the rural homestead, that most of the living of an earlier era took place.
Before there were roads and bridges and the easy transportation of automobiles, life happened in and around the home. Many people living on remote family farms spent their entire lives within a few miles of their home, just as their parents and grandparents had before them. Both for these people and for those whose hearts were torn when they left the farm for jobs in the city, the Southern home place was sacred.
It’s no wonder that the images of the rural Southern homestead find their way into so many bluegrass songs. In their own way, each of these songs expresses the longing to return to an earlier time when all was safe and secure at “The Little Cabin Home on the Hill.”
In the southern mountains, it was the railroad that first broke down the walls of rural isolation. Before the coming of the railroad to western
For many, the homegrown variety of mountain music was the only type of music they knew. But even after the walls of rural isolation came tumbling down with the coming of the railroad, the automobile, the radio, and phonograph records, many mountain people in the southeast held firmly to the musical traditions they had inherited from their parents and grandparents before them.
Some Common Rural Images Found in Songs:
Cabins, front porches, fireside, foxes, streams, hills, mountains, valleys, mules, horses, cattle, wagons, groundhogs, rabbits, possums, coon dogs, pigs, pine trees, flowers, roses, corn, watermelons, churches, graveyards, camp meetings and baptisms.
**Rural Roots of
You sure love those horses Ava, and they love you too. Take care, my friend, Love, Merle.
I know exactly what you mean about a screen door banging shut. My grandparents had a screen door and the banging closed was a constant sound. It makes me smile to this day to hear one.
Thank you for the well wishes ... keep sending them my way. I'm fighting a little depression. Trying to stay happy and positive. Sometimes easier than others.
I'm okay though, just tired mostly. Up late and getting up early. Under the gun and not feeling like I've accomplished enough to have it done on a schedule.
I do love those horses! They are so sweet to me. Thanks for coming by the blog!
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