Sunday, September 26, 2010


Billy Sue was there in the form of a goat with a goiter and loads of insecurity. Back and forth overcompensating his leadership role by attempting to maintain balance in a scattered herd. For me, the goat was preshow entertainment.

The whole scene was actually.

I kept thinking who dreams this big? who has a plot of land and shares it so exquisitely with the world?The answer would have to be the very fine folks at Cedar Hill Farms in Love, MS. The effort it takes to do what they do is mind boggling. The location for the music fest was the most perfect venue for family, respect of nature and witness to the most incredible music. It was an honor to have placed a blanket there, have pulled up a cooler and watched magic on a clear, cool, starry Southern night.

It was an energetic atmosphere and, for the most part, I stayed on a back plot behind the crowd, taking in all the stories around me. Naturally main stage was where the meat of the novel was. A two piece band taking the floor and allowing us to watch as they checked the sound.


check. check.

syllabus. check.

up. acoustic in the first one. drums. more bass.

check. syllabus. syllabus. check. check.

I stood there and watched as Priscilla first got off the blanket and began skipping toward the stage.

Then Seth and Slater quickly stood from the hay bails they had been sitting on and walked past me in a beeline toward the center.

Within moments Josh rolled off the blanket and silently marched forward.

I think I was a witness to what good music does. I, standing there in the dark, barefoot on a beautifully manicured field, a herd of goats to my right, am here to give my testimony of a church service on God's green Earth last night. When it's real and guttural and connecting then you can't help but be moved towards it. People were.

I was.

I wish this morning that I had a song list.

I don't.

There was one new to me, and I think it was called Remember My Name or Remember Me. I don't know, but I've got to find out more about it. Study it. It interested me.

But even more than that was the feeling of the entire show. There were kids running around swinging glow bands, people dancing in their own temporary property. Woodstomp providing a celebration of sorts, a metaphoric fireworks show. I think the thing about it is you can't help but celebrate when you watch them play. Their music is a celebration.

They are two very happy guys when they are doing what they do.

And you would have thought that would have been all there was. All there needed to be.

Yet Gary Burnside, one of the very talented sons of Mr. RL Burnside, walked on stage to jam with Woodstomp on their last song. This, my friends, was the moment when what I thought was all there ever needed to be became more. The celebration written of earlier was amped up.

All on party.

Soon after The Burnside Exploration got on stage and gave me the feeling I was a part of a historical moment, the FIRST EVER LOVE MUSIC FESTIVAL.

I was there. Privileged. Honored.

And grateful for the climatic moment of all moments when I joined the group, sat on a hay bail as Charlie and Connor from Woodstomp came back on stage to perform what I must call magic with Gary and Dex Burnside.

So very grateful.

If you're around, today is the last day so you may want to catch what that is. If you missed last night, well, all I can truly write is I'm sorry.....maybe next year.

Photos from the talented Priscilla Miller.


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