Saturday, December 09, 2006

Hard Times Come Again No More

I decided to take one of my favorite Stephen Foster songs, as sung by Nanci Griffith, and do a photo essay. Only one of the photos is mine, the rest were found on the web. FYI, I used the image of my own father in the third image. He's the gentleman in the hat looking out meditatively toward the ocean near Kennebunkport, Maine. I wanted to show the faces of poverty and misfortune all around our world - tsunami, war, hurricane, famine, and social injustice, along with the faces of families affected by disease that could have been prevented but wasn't - because not only did their governments not care enough, but we have also turned our faces from their pain for too long. I especially gave exposure to the people of New Orleans, the city whose hidden poverty was unveiled to the rest of America and to the world after Katrina blew that veil away.

It's my first YouTube full-length feature.

If you want to see why you can expect to hear a lot about our nation's need for universal health care from John Edwards in the near future, see this mini-video - my first try at YouTube.


benny06 said...

Your post sparks a couple of past experiences.

Some years ago, I was visiting the DC area, and a friend got tickets to the Ford Theater to see the musical, Beautiful Dreamer, which was a collection of Stephen Foster tunes, wrapped into a civil war theme. I recall this song in particular because it showed slaves who became free but at the same time, the reconstruction period was horrific, so the freed people were still suffering from lack of resources. But they were happy to be free.

Seemed appropriate to see hear the song at that moment since it was where Lincoln saw his last play--and was assasinated.

About time to pull out that old cassette of collected Stephen Foster tunes I have somewhere and perhaps starting looking for CD's to start replacing it.

Nanci Griffith, whose Grandparents' house is featured in John Edwards new book, Home: the Blueprints of Our Lives, is also one of my favorite artists. I saw Nanci in 1981 and 1984 at the Kerrville Folk Festival, then about 8-10 years later in Boston, in which Iris DeMint opened the show. I also won't forget when she performed (by request)at the 1993 Bob Dylan anniversary concert when she did a duet with legendary folk artist Carolyn Hester.

Oh, I just read something I didn't know: Nanci and Elizabeth Edwards share the same b-day, although Nanci was born in 1953. Another moonchild like me.

I'm checking out An Other Day by Yusef. So far, the lyrics aren't terribly enlightening, but I like the music and his celebration of life. You may enjoy giving it a listen too.

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