The Hoar fog finally lifted about 11 am today. That made for a freezing night. At least, when it did lift, the day was warm and beautiful.
I went to see a film about the life of Derroll Adams, who is originally from Portland, Oregon who made his name in the European folk music scene. He was friends with many of the great American folk musicians of the mid-twentieth century, including Woody Guthrie and his son, Arlo Guthrie, who appears several times in the film.
I guess what really piqued my interest especially was the part of the film that described his early life in the US. It reminded me very much of some of the stories and places that my own family has told me about. Although he was born in Portland 20 years before my grandparents moved from the mid-west to the Pacific Northwest (PNW) (on black market gas no less, as the story goes), much of what happened at the time (like the Bonneville Dam) had a direct impact on my family as well. My great-grandfather on my grandmother's side worked on Bonneville (hopefully, they will correct me if I am mistaken).
I was unaware that there was a place in Europe for American folk music but he seemed to be able to connect with people even when he did not speak the language. I think that sometimes in US, at least, that we get so caught up in our own psycho-drama about our inferiority complex concerning Europe that we forget that they do not dislike us as much as we dislike them (or, possibly more accurately, we dislike ourselves). To put it another way, many people dislike our policies but do not hate the people that they meet. This is because when we are faced with a living breathing person, it is much more difficult to dislike them than it is to dislike some abstract notion of a person.
posted by Chris #7:01 PM | 0 comments |