A series of clicks on amazon brought me to an incredible, folksy album called The Goat Rodeo Sessions on which string greats Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, and Chris Thile play 11 nuanced, melodically complex, introspective songs. Singer Aoife O’Donavan joins them on a couple of songs and Here and Heaven in particular hit me in that place where music becomes more than just organized frequencies – where life is explained, where beauty is at the forefront and, until the music stops, nothing else matters.
We just got back from a brief but enjoyable visit to the Virginia Folk Life Apprenticeship Showcase. The program exists to link enthusiastic learners to master craftspeople within Virginia. The showcase featured oyster shuckers; banjo players; stone masons; guitar, autoharp, gun, mask, pie, cheese, stew, and cider makers; and Chikahominy dancers. We didn’t stay for the entire showcase, as things progressed a bit slowly, but we did get to see a few musicians and sample stew, cider, oysters, cheese, and apple pie.