… I wondered if I should go to confession the next day….
It was back to Hannah Community Center for me and my husband on April 1st. This time it wasn’t for a Community Sing, although the “community” did do some singing. It was for a folk concert. The singers/songwriters/musicians this night were Archie Fisher and Garnet Rogers. We found out about this concert at the Community Sing back in February. The emcee for the night announced that unlike most folk concerts put on by Ten Pound Fiddle, this one would be at the Hannah Community Center because there was an overflow crowd last time they played at their other venue at the Unitarian Universalist Church nearby. Figuring we shouldn’t pass up a chance to hear some obviously fabulous singers. Fabulous singers who also sing Scottish folk songs (my husband, Dan, is part Scottish), Dan whispered to me “we should go!” I agreed, though I’m not a big fan of Scottish folk songs. But, I dragged my husband to many a Polka Mass and he keeps reminding me of his bad experience at the Orchard Lake St. Mary’s Polish Country Fair a few years back. I was having a wonderful time listening to Big Daddy. If I had a partner, I would’ve been on the dance floor polka-ing (my husband does not dance!) He kept complaining how loud it was. Alas, we eventually left before Big Daddy’s set was over… So, basically, I owed him. That was my attitude going into this night.
By the end of the night, however, I was glad that I went. These two artists are “earthy,” as Dan likes to say. I’ll just call their humor “raw.” Hence the thought: “should I go to confession after exposing myself to such language?” Dan assures me that Joel Mabus is much more “earthy,” but I don’t think so. (I’m a fan of Mr. Mabus and have enjoyed his concerts immensely!) Perhaps, “earthy” in a different way. I’ll concede that. Despite the “earthiness” this night, I laughed so hard! Haven’t laughed quite so much in a long time! It was wonderful to laugh like that!
So, if I’m laughing and having a good time, why did I also cry, you ask? It wasn’t so much out of sadness, as it was out of sentimentality. Many of the songs sung were just so beautiful and romantic. Garnet Rogers sung a song called “Small Victory” that made me tear up. Perhaps it’s a song that any animal lover would get tears in their eyes over. Here are the lyrics, but truly it’s best to hear the song sung. Alas, I could not find a YouTube video suitable.
You’ve no business buying a mare like that
But buy her if you must
He bit the end off his cigar
And spat it in the dust
She’s old, she’s lame and barren too
She’s not worth feeding hay
But I’ll give her this, he blew smoke at me,
She was something in her day.
I recall her well 10 years ago
She was a winner in her prime
She was fast and lean and willing
But they raced her past her time
And though she had the heart
Her legs were gone
It wasn’t hard to see
But they kept her at it in the hopes
Of one more small victory
She was shunted round from track to track
From Kentucky up to Maine
They’d run her in cheap claimers
All doped up to mask her pain
And if its my advice you want I’d say
The poor things had her day
You’d be thowing good cash after bad
Its best, he turned away
Oh they led her round the auction shed
And bidding started low
She’ll go for dogfood someone said
The markets been that slow
But she raised her head and pricked her ears
And before the hammer fell
She’s was mine
My friend turned round to me
You’re softheaded I can tell
But she’d been shoved from pillar to post said I
And always done her best
They used her up they rung her dry
You’d think she earned her rest
So if she does not bode out her day
Beneath some shady tree
I’ll have saved her from the knacker’s yard
And that’s enough for me
Oh that was near two years ago
She’s filled out some since then
And more so since she’s been in foal
She eats enough for ten
And this morn as I crept to the barn
Around ’bout half past three
There stood nursing on still trembling legs
One more “small victory”.
Tearing up yet?
Then there was this song, sung by Archie Fisher. He had the audience get involved by singing the refrain. As far as I’m concerned, this was the most beautiful song sung that night.