The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #39666   Message #563377
Posted By: Fortunato
02-Oct-01 - 10:00 AM
Thread Name: The Carter Family: Shaping My Music
Subject: The Carter Family: Shaping My Music
More than any other individuals The Carter Family have been a life long influence on my music and, as a result, my relationship with my family's heritage.

I first heard the Carter family on 78s at my grandfather's house in Shenadoah valley as a child. It had been a log cabin that became a little clapboard house by the side of Honeyville Road. My uncle owned the country store up the road, much like AP's down the valley. The first melody I learned to play on the guitar was "Wild Wood Flower", Mother Maybelle's signature piece. I learned to play it on my grandfather's guitar. Later, when I learned "Little Darling Pal of Mine" I didn't learn it from Maybelle's playing. I learned it from Joan Baez's recording. I also learned from her album liner notes that the hillbillys I'd been rejecting were the progenitors of much the folk music I was playing in our high school hootenannys. I learned to sing bass to gospel songs from AP recordings and at the same time came to respect my own heritage. Their influence moves through me every time I pick up my guitar and sing with my wife. I wish I could thank them.