Saturday, September 29, 2007

Italians Can Pick Too

Today my son and I helped a friend who is preparing to move. He really dove into the work, hauling load after load of iffy material from her garage, coming up with and demonstrating alternative uses for unknown objects, and just being a good fun kid.

As we drove away, he sighed, "I'm really gonna miss her."

So will I. This friend has been around a long while, and was there when Son of Mando came outta my belly and into the world. Since that moment he's been his own kid, kind of an old soul in a young body. He's eerily insightful and genuinely funny. He has his teen moments, but most of the time he's good to hang around with.

This tune, Old Joe Clark, is one of the first fiddle tunes he learned to play -- on fiddle, guitar, and mando. He has it in him to do it all if he could just recognize in himself all that the rest of us see in him. He is extremely bright, incredibly compassionate, and very talented. And I'm glad he enjoys this music.

That fella in the middle is a guy named Beppe Gambetta. He's "the" Italian bluegrass star, here sharing the stage of his Acoustic Night performance with Darrell Scott and Brad Davis in the retelling of this trad favorite. My son is proud of his Italian heritage (on Dad's side) and so it's a fitting little tribute to him to share with you.

Enjoy one called "Banjo Clark". Listen carefully to the words. As my son would say, there's more than meets the ear.


At September 30, 2007 10:04 AM, Blogger Blueberry said...

I enjoyed that song. Thank you! I had not heard of Beppe. Music certainly is universal these days. I was just listening online to a Greencards concert yesterday (which you can hear through links on their website), and Kym tells the story behind one of the songs on their latest, about his grandparents that left everything behind in their native Italy and moved to Australia. His father is also a Bluegrass player in Australia (like he [Kym] was before moving over here) named Trev Warner. Bluegrass music is not at all common or even popular over there, but it still made its mark over great distances.

At September 30, 2007 3:39 PM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

Hi Blueberry!
Wasn't that fun?!

I first heard about Beppe Gambetta in a sort of bluegrass history written by Stephanie Ledgin ( I think I may have heard of Trev Warner. The European Bluegrass Music Association (EBMA) is pretty vibrant, but alas, imagine my disappointment when I got my first issue of the membership magazine....and it was all in Dutch and German! lol! Needless to say I plan to continue to support them, sans periodicals.

Hope you're having a wonderful Sunday!

At October 01, 2007 7:25 AM, Blogger Shameless Agitator said...

I look at Son of Mando and his little sister, my kids, my sister's kids, and I wonder how on earth we all created these amazing people. They are wise beyond their years. Someday they'll be running their own theater company. And the world, too.



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