Country, My Country

I have a unique relationship with country music. It ebbs and flows in and out of my life in a beautiful way. My grandpa (my hero) played the fiddle in a country music band. My mother loathed country music. My father was indifferent and it was only later in life that I discovered he loved Janis Joplin and saw Stevie Ray Vaughan perform live in a tiny club in Dallas before he was a name …. we can definitely blame my adoration of blues and live music on my poppa.

Isn’t it interesting how our musical appetites shift based on who we spend time with? Boyfriends in middle and high school listened to country but in college and beyond, most didn’t. The man in my most significant relationship did not want to listen to country music so country became an ellipses in my musical life.

One lonely pandemic morning, I woke up thinking of the song “The Dance” by John Michael Montgomery and ditched my whole yoga class plan and made a class around country music.

It’s so interesting to have been raised in Texas but not raised on country music. I had to discover a country music education by way of my friends and boyfriends and I’m a little bit stuck in the 80s, 90s, and 2000s – but I don’t mind… some of the songs I listen to today are my very own time machine— they transport me to a feeling – a feeling of hope… a feeling of appreciating the simple things… of believing in love. I do believe strongly in love. Fiercely.

Family is a note that strums the strings in my heart when I listen to certain country songs. I grew up with a big, strong family – seeing cousins constantly, sharing meals and every holiday together – we’ve dissipated now and it’s one of my deepest heartaches.

We have Native American, English, and Irish in our ancestral family tree but our Texas roots are deep. As descendants of the founders of Dallas, my family could have been disapproving of me moving away – ‘we’ve been here since it began!’ or ‘you can’t leave – we are all here!’ but I have strong women in my family who support me digging up my roots to fly out here in New York City.

Country music is my roots. I love it.

Don’t color your roots… this is what our next Coronayoga class is about. Can’t wait to share it with you. Here’s the working playlist:

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