appalachia rising

CHRIST STOPPED IN DIXIE || [PLAYMOSS] [SPOTIFY]

Later he saw Jesus move from tree to tree in the back of his mind, a wild ragged figure motioning him to turn around and come off into the dark where he might be walking on the water and not know it and then suddenly know it and drown. 

- Flannery O’Connor, Wise Blood

Blood on my Name  |  The Brothers Bright   
Saint Elizabeth  |  Kaia Kater
Don’t Go into the Barn  |  Tom Waits
Oh Death  |  Rising Appalachia 
God’s Gonna Cut You Down  |  Johnny Cash
Old Time Religion  |  Parker Millsap 
Pretty Polly  |  Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn 
Devil Got My Woman  |  Skip James  
Way Down Hadestown  |  Anaïs Mitchell  
Nothing but the Water (I)  | Grace Potter & the Nocturnals  
Freedom Hangs like Heaven  |  Iron & Wine  
Red Right Hand  |  Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds  
Black Ghost Blues  |  Lightnin’ Hopkins  
Human  |  Rag n’ Bone Man

B A C K W A T E R  W I T C H C R A F T ( T H E  S E C O N D )

“an ancient suitcase full of beeswax candles and unknown bones wrapped in dirty burlap, gris-gris bags and jars of anointing oil.”

(a convenient followup 8tracks playlist of my favourite voodoo blues, southern gothic, swamp witch sounds)

[ tracklist ]

I Put a Spell On You - Joss Stone  |  Don’t Go Into That Barn - Tom Waits  |  Black - Kari Kimmel  |  Special Death - Mirah  |  Black Cat Bone - Lightnin’ Hopkins  |  Gold Dust Woman - Fleetwood Mac  |  Instructions to Meet the Devil - Tom Brosseau  |  House of the Rising Sun - Lauren O'connell  |  Oh Death - Rising Appalachia  |  Black and Evil Blues - Josh White  |  Diggin’ My Grave - William Elliot Whitmore  |  Season of the Witch - Donovan  |  Beat the Devil Tattoo - Black Rebel Motorcycle Club  |  Mississippi Queen - Mountain  |  No Place to Hide - Jace Everett  |  She Belongs to the Devil - Washboard Sam  |  Little Drop of Poison - Tom Waits  |  Sign of the Gypsy Queen - April Wine  |  Black Magic Woman - Santana  |  The Love Me or Die - C.W. Stoneking  |  Nothing But the Water (Part 1) - Grace Potter and the Nocturnals

l i s t e n  h e r e

2

rising appalachia was fucking amazing as always ❤ it was such a different experience this time! they performed in an old church sanctuary from the 1800s so the mixture of the stained glass, incredible acoustics from the vast dome ceiling, and of course the wonderful band just made for a very captivating event.

they had a first nations couple come in before they performed to welcome us and them all to the lekwungen territory, and sang a traditional cree song which was absolutely beautiful.

was going to ask the lovely chloe & leah for a photo with them afterwards (they were signing merch) but everyone was exhausted and I didn’t want to be a bother. they’ll be back though, so maybe next time! regardless, it was such a memorable night, I don’t need a photo to remember it~ ❤

youtube

(via https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=czkHmjrFCnM)

Rising Appalachia- Medicine [Official Music Video]

“Medicine” is a song-anthem honoring the traditions of folk medicine; plant-based medicine as a tool for empowerment and healing. It is a call to action to support the voices of the herbalists, healers, and teachers… the roots, plants, trees, and stones… the arts, the spirits, and the wild ones. It is an honoring of all the many ways that we can be well, and the radical and traditional ways in which we can steward health within ourselves.

This song is a direct tribute to the people around the world who are holding and teaching these ways of herbal plant-based medicine, educating us all to know our gardens, our forests, our plants and our own bodies… to bring wellness back into our own hands and communities. It is not a dismissal of modern medicine, but a gratitude and honoring of its ancestry and foundations within folkloric traditions.

This release comes on the New Moon after the Fall Equinox. As we are moving into a new season, a new time, and a new chapter, we offer this song as a ritual anthem for this transition and time of great change.

"Medicine” Lyrics:

Wise men say that rushing is violence
and so is your silence
when its rooted in compliance
To stand firm in loving defiance,
make art your alliance
give voice to the fire

Move people to the beat of the wind
Gather yourself and begin
to dance the song until it ends
We are winners, champions of the light
forming in numbers and might
keep the truth close in sight…

Chorus:
Medicine Woman, Medicine Man
walking with grace, I know your face, and I trust your hands
Medicine Woman, Medicine Man
walking with grace, I know your face, and I trust your hands

Find your teachers in the voice of the forests
unplug you cant ignore this
wisdom of the voiceless
Remedies are bountiful and surround us
from the garden to the farthest
prayers made of star dust

Find your healing in the music that calls you
the voice that enthralls you
what do you belong to
Eyes out theres the setting of the sun
give thanks to each and everyone
the lesson is the…

Medicine Woman, Medicine Man
walking with grace I know your face, and I trust your hand
Medicine Woman, Medicine Man
walking with grace, I know your face, and I trust your hand

Poem:

I believe in bending backwards and extending
in my tracks
trip back
until the lesson is in action and
your yard is feeding
stop stark the disbelieving
cause the garden holds the shards
the medicine is in the seeds when

We hold tight to our right to protect and
we know our might is 10-fold in connection
our elders hold them bright lights
we protect them
the medicine is evident
the wolf, the hawk, the bear clan

We hold tight to our right to protect and
we know our might is 10-fold in connection
our elders hold them bright lights
we protect them
the medicine is evident
the wolf, the hawk, the bear clan…

Medicine Woman, Medicine Man
walking with grace, I know your face, and I trust your hands
Medicine Woman, Medicine Man
walking with grace, I know your face, and I trust your hands

Made with SoundCloud

S E A  W I T C H

“she mixes potions in tide pools, wears dresses made of sand, divinations whispered from seashells, she is just as controlled by the moon as the tide in which she lives in. attempt to seek her out and all you will find is sea foam and a storm in her wake.”

(a convenient 8tracks playlist of my favourite dreamy pagan, magical, and oceanic tunes)

[ tracklist ]

The Lotus Eaters - Wendy Rule  |  Heartbeat - Gazelle Twin   |  Moonchild - King Crimson  |  Mississippi Song - Rising Appalachia  |  Into the Woods - Cilla Jane  |  The Heretic Heart - Catherine Madsen with the Greater Lansing Spinsters Guild  |  La Femme De La Mer - Wendy Rule  |  Chimacum Rain - Linda Perhacs  |  Swoon - Rising Appalachia  |  La La La Song - American Horror Story Coven  |  Hairy Trees - Goldfrapp  |  Unicorne - Faun   |  Icarus - White Hinterland  |  Against the Sky - Vashti Bunyan  |  O Deep Woods - Solanaceae  |  Bya Bya - Solveig Slettahjell  |  The Curse - Agnes Obel  |  Song of Exile - Cover by Karliene Reynolds  |  Blue Caravan - Vienna Teng  |  Never Let Me Go - Gazelle Twin  |  The Violet Hour - The Civil Wars  |  Come Away to the Water -  Glen Hansard

l i s t e n  h e r e

My Arrest at the White House

The following is an op-ed I wrote about being arrested at the White House protesting mountaintop removal. It appeared in the 3 October 2010 edition of the Lexington Herald-Leader.

***

“Freedom Fighters: Protesting Coal Abuses”

I first saw the White House when I was 11 years old. Standing on the sidewalk of Pennsylvania Avenue, I remember grasping the iron bars of the fence and peering in with reverence.

I have stood on that sidewalk many times since — again as a tourist, then as a college student at nearby George Washington University, and finally, briefly as a D.C. resident strolling through Lafayette Park.

But on Monday, I returned to the White House to engage in non-violent civil disobedience and to be arrested in protest of mountaintop removal mining as part of “Appalachia Rising.”

Appalachians have often been forced to dissent in this manner against the tyranny of the coal industry and the cooperation of our government. One cannot reflect on the union movement of the 1930s without thinking of Don West and Aunt Molly Jackson, or the fight against strip mining in the 1960s without recalling the image of the Widow Combs being carried off a mountainside by Kentucky State Police.

Still, it was an action I did not take lightly, but was one necessitated by the indifference of Kentucky’s elected officials (including Gov. Steve Beshear) and the half-hearted regulatory efforts of the Obama administration.

Along with fellow Eastern Kentuckians, including Beverly May, Teri Blanton, Mickey McCoy and Rick Handshoe, I crossed a police line in front of the White House. I did so as an Appalachian, as an American, as a Christian. More than 100 others joined us in a symbolic attempt to gain the attention of President Barack Obama and the Environmental Protection Agency.

We ignored repeated warnings from the U.S. Park Police to move, instead chanting “We are Appalachia” and “Yes, we can.”

The arrests began, and rightly so — we were willfully disobeying an order from law enforcement officials. We were in the wrong according to the law, but in the right according to our consciences. For mountaintop removal does not just scrape away a mountain. It lays waste to an entire culture, the livelihoods and health of mountain people and, perhaps most importantly, our very freedom.

In 1941, President Franklin Roosevelt famously named “four essential human freedoms” that should be enjoyed by people throughout the world, freedoms that are sadly missing today in Appalachia.

Freedom of speech. Many Appalachians are afraid to speak out against the coal industry, fearful of retribution from their employers and neighbors. “My daughter bought me a stun gun for Christmas because I’ve been threatened a couple of times,” recalls Judy Bonds, one of the anti-mountaintop removal movement’s most vocal leaders. “You can’t look down when somebody looks at you. You’ve got to look them right in the eye and keep going.”

Freedom of religion. While the region boasts an abundance of churches, it too often seems like coal is the true religion, a vengeful god requiring total devotion and subservience. The concept of environmental stewardship is rarely taught, as most churches rely on tithes from members affiliated with the coal industry. “It’s just as simple as Psalm 24,” says Patricia Hudson, writer and co-director of the Lindquist Environmental Appalachian Fellowship. “‘The Earth is the Lord’s.’”

Freedom from want. The poverty rate in the coal-producing counties of Eastern Kentucky and West Virginia often exceeds 30 percent. And according to statistics from the West Virginia Coal Association, the number of mining jobs in the state declined from 125,000 to 16,000 between 1950 and 2004, while coal production increased during the same period.

Freedom from fear. Noted Kentucky author Anne Shelby observes, “The coal companies do a real good job of making people be afraid of losing their job, that fear that people have of not being able to put food on the table for their families. They’ve always done that.”

It has been said that “freedom is not free,” and I agree. Sometimes, defending our freedom calls for the men and women of our military. But sometimes, it requires thousands of protesters to march through the streets of our nation’s capital. Sometimes, it requires 115 patriots to cross a police line and refuse to move an inch. Sometimes, it requires $100 to pay the fine.

It was the best 100 bucks I have ever spent.

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Grassroots folk-soul sisters Leah & Chloe & the Rising Appalachia collective create their 6th full-length album full of sound prowess.