Sunday, March 15, 2015

"Ill Fly Away" - Gillian Welch and David Rawlings (2011)

I first posted this a few years ago. It's such a beautiful performance of the old standard that it deserves to be posted again. I listen to this one often in the car. Sue will have to tell you about me driving over the mountains one foggy and rainy night, singing this song and trusting in the Lord to take us home! She made me stop and get a motel room, which only led me to question her faith; and earning me no points at all....

Gillian Welch is one of the modern gospel singers who, along with guitarist, and real life partner David Rawlings; have been keeping that good old time gospel music alive for the past decade, or so. They are part of an independent music scene that increasingly draws upon the resources of our American past, particularly the so-called Appalachian sound, borne of the poverty and hopelessness of the Great Depression.

The main thing which attracts me to this type of music is that it is easily played by just about anyone with a guitar; including me. With just a few simple chords, the amateur guitarist can soar with the angels. Watch David Rawlings on the solo and see how he is at one with his instrument. That's an old 1936 National guitar and he never plays anything else that I've seen. And his sound and approach to music are as unique as that guitar.

Music is a balm which soothes the soul. And gospel music is one of the main roots to American music in general; even being somewhat of the basis for jazz; and certainly the father of rock and roll. I like playing this song- it relieves me of my troubles and pains. Sometimes music can transport you beyond this world and all of its shortcomings, hinting at a better place. Kind of like Judy Garland and “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” It’s all about hope. 

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