According to Dictionary.com, Revival means “an instance of something becoming popular, active, or important again”.
When I started this page, I was frustrated with the state of country music. Like most who favor traditional music (or as I have been calling it “Roots”), it sticks in my craw to see the dancin’ and prancin’ and hip/hop vibes coming out of Nashville these days. I think we even see it in much of what is known as Red-Dirt Country as well. In a world where everyone has “gone electric”, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find genuine artists who have not given up on the sound that is deeply rooted in the soil of this country.
But when I listen to artists like Colter Wall, or Willie Watson, I begin to think about what it might have been like for the early pioneers out West. Songs like “Bob Fudge”, and “Bring it With You When You Come” make me wonder what my ancestors were doing during those times. What did they think about music then?
My grandfather used to tell me stories about how he, his brother, and a few other friends got together a bluegrass band. His brother had a beautiful Gibson guitar, and He played the stand-up bass; but not just any old stand up bass. This was a wash-tub bass. He loved to listen to me play songs like “Rocky Top”, “Will the Circle Be Unbroken”, and “Dixie”. His wife, my grandmother, loves ET. No, not extraterrestrial. Ernest Tubb. The Texas Troubadour. I can hear my grandmother singing, “Walkin’ The Floor” almost every time I pick up my guitar. (I think she sings it better than ET, but maybe I’m just biased.)
I asked my brother, not too long ago, why he likes the music he likes. I think he might have better taste in roots music than I do. He said the most profound thing, I think. He said, “I sometimes listen to songs and think, ‘I wonder if my granddad would be proud that I’m listening to this'”. I know there are many reasons that people listen to music. Some to dance, some to sing, some to alter their mood, or even to continue the mood they’re in. But there is something in the human heart that wants to be in touch with what used to be. What did my great great grandmother listen to when she was lonely? What song was stuck in my Great grandfathers head as he walked behind the plow? How many musicians are in my family’s lineage? What songs did they sing?
I now know, after creating this page, that there are more people out there who are holding on to that seemingly lost art of traditional music. And I have found that there are artists who continuing to be true to the roots of the music they know and love and create. It’s out there, and I hope to help be a source for those who are still feeling frustrated as I am, but do not know who these artists are.
There is a Revival Happening, so hop on the wagon!