KMW welcomes Kathleen Hudson as a contributor with her column, On The Road. Kathleen Hudson, Ph.D, is in the English Department at Schreiner University in Kerrville, Texas. She founded the Texas Heritage Music Foundation in 1987 out of a commitment that stories and songs make a difference in the world. She has won many awards, has been a newspaper and magazine columnist for over 12 years, and previously had her own Radio series on Texas music. She is a published author of Telling Stories, Writing Songs: An Album of Texas Songwriters and Women in Texas Music: Stories and Songs, and KMW is honored to have her on board. Here is her first contribution.
KATHLEEN HUDSON – ON THE ROAD: AUGUST 2012
MI CORAZON: Here’s to Gabriele Rico, a woman warrior who’s groundbreaking work on the teaching of writing, WRITING THE NATURAL WAY, called me out to California to the Young Rhetorician’s Conference 20 plus years ago. To find her. And I did. Now she is fighting her third major battle with cancer. She hid the first two battles so people would not know, so she could fight alone. Now her work in creativity and writing has opened her up to sharing. “Only connect, “ says E.M. Forrester. I used that quote in my dissertation on writers. Gabriele, my mentor, my inspiration, my light. I stayed with her in 2011 in San Jose as I did some research for my new creativity class at Schreiner. She put David Sheilds’ book, REALITY HUNGER: A MANIFESTO, in my hands. I have not been the same since! This column is now a collection of pieces of reality. And I dedicate it to Gabriele! She encouraged us all, all her students, to say what we saw and to flow.
JULIA MAGNESS: I heard Julia Magness sing at Willie’s place, Luck, Texas, on an Easter morning. Bells of Joy were the featured group for this gospel time. Julia was “the voice,” discovered in a previous gospel Sunday. As the preacher took the mike into the audience on the last song, “When the Saints Go Marching In,” he was looking for the next voice. Julia was moving on with her own recording, “Take Me Home,” after winning a spot on the Memphis Blues Awards. I looked down, terrified at the thought of even singing one verse in this crowd. Gabriele would have nudged me to look up and take the mike. For the fun of it. I didn’t.
MARFA: Reading a story on the new festival in Marfa, Texas, I saw Julia listed as a featured performer, along with Brennen Leigh, Terri Hendrix, Drew Kennedy and a host of others. What a way to end July! And the three I listed will be in Kerrville for the Silver Jubilee of the Texas Heritage Music Foundation, September 28-29.
BOOKS: Drew not only has a CD but decided to get on the road and write an accompanying book that tells us a story about each song, a novel approach, and a good one! Either piece stands alone, and together they have been described as a “masterpiece.” The reviews on his website hail the project and groundbreaking and innovative, FRESH WATER IN THE SALTON SEA. Terri has her book out on the art and business of music, CRY TILL YOU LAUGH: The Part That Ain’t Art. I am using that in my Texas music class. The Texas music office has a new handbook published by Texas Tech, full of stories about our colorful history. And Terry Dalrymple has an original book out, TEXAS SOUNDTRACK: Texas Stories Inspired by Texas Music! Each author in the collection writes a short story based on a song. See www.inkbrushpress.com for information on Dalrymple. I love the the one inspired by Stephen Bruton’s “Bigger Wheel,” by Wayne Nichols. And Chris Ellery owes a debt to Robert Earl Keen’s “Feelin Good Again,” in “Four Snakes.” This Texas music genre is full of literary connections, a web of stories and songs.
PIER 27: Terry and Gary McCormick were part of my early history in Kerrville when I lived off Southway and spent many an evening in the mall nearby dancing at McStipps. I heard local band Japonica there as well as rock bands from Austin. And oysters at happy hour were a surprise. Now they successfully produce music at Pier 27 and Guadalupe River Club, where I also had great oysters. Pier 27, formerly the Back Porch, showcases various styles of Texas music. Greg Forest and Ronnie Leatherman hold down a Thursday night open mike. THMF may start hosting one on Wed. night with Austin Ladd Roberts. And Pier 27 is home to the birthday tribute for Jimmie Rodgers on September 8, hosted by Bill Lewis and the Stoney Ridge Playboys. We will play Dylan songs for Jimmie. After all, Dylan started his Egyptian label to pay tribute to Jimmie in 1997, his 100th birthday! Everything connects.
ERIC TAYLOR: THMF is hosting a Silver Jubilee house concert in the faculty house at Schreiner University on September 22 with Eric Taylor. Pick up the September magazine for that story. September 5 is a coffeehouse with Max Baca and David Farias, free at Schreiner University. September 28-29 is the new revised Texas Heritage Music Days, featuring Terri Hendrix and Lloyd Maines. Over 50 performers will play Friday for schools and teachers and any community members. Terri and Lloyd will also give a workshop Saturday for only $95, including lunch, the Hendrix book, and an evening coffeehouse showcase. Many more details at www.texasheritagemusic.org.
AUGUST 30: Texas Heritage Music teams up with Grapejuice from 5-9 to enjoy music and good food! 5% of food sales benefit THMF project. Come eat (and enjoy wine) with us. Joleen will have some silver on display and music will flow! All for a Silver Jubilee.
GEMINI INK: I attended the summer literary festival in San Antonio, writing poetry with Tom Ward and making chapbooks with Bryce Milligan, owner of Wings Press (Townes Van Zandt songbook).Bryce may be on of the wonders of Texas as he wears all the creative hats! When asked how he describes himself, he answers my way, “I live my life and follow my muse. That is my life.” He not only publishes 12-15 books a year with Wings Press, but he also writes songs, novels, essays, edits and publishes, and makes guitars!
HEART OF THE TEXAS CONCERT BAND: I accompanied Rod Kennedy, a rich music aficionado, to Louise Hays Park on Sunday, July 8., for the Sunday Summer Serenade brought to this community by the Bank of the Hills. What a gift! What a cool evening with storm clouds threatening and keeping us cool! I sat back, relaxed, and loved the showcases of familiar songs, ending with “Deep in the Heart of Texas.” I was there, in that heart!
KERRVILLE WINE AND MUSIC FESTIVAL: Dalis covers this well in her column so look there. I have many stories of the music I love in Kerrville, and the Kerrville Festivals are at the heart of my life’s work here. Guy Forsyth, Cary Cooper, and Ruby Jane (young with a fiddle) are a few of the featured performers. Guy sings songs and creates that sounds with his voice and instrument that cause an audience to sit up and pay attention! Cary recently won a songwriting award. Whatever Dalis does, it’s all good. Ils sont partis.
~ Kathleen Hudson
Purchase Kathleen’s books:
“I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.” ~ Maya Angelou
“Woman is the Wonder of the World.” ~ Billy Joe Shaver