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Music Fills The Air, Joy Fills The Body, Repeat



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Music in the Floyd Country Store is more than a radio station. The old time music jams on Sundays bring young and old with fiddles, guitars, mandolins, and banjos.


A big circle passes the song from one to another; new player, new song.


It’s American roots music at its finest and a treat to find when I wasn’t looking. Apparently my wife was looking and had it figured out quietly.


“Let’s stop in Floyd,” she said. “There’s a country store we might like.”

I’m thinking Arlene’s in Elkton, Oregon as a reference and hope there might be a logger burger in Virginia’s outback. I didn’t expect a bluegrass jam from musicians who looked like they just parked their tractor out back.


The music in Floyd soared up to me and made me wonder how I didn’t know about anything so wonderful. I always wonder that when I hear unsuspecting aces play their strings with farmer fingers so fast and nimble when they look so gnarled and bent.


The last thought was I need to play my guitar more. The same goes for anyone with a guitar.


I remembered Floyd after a call from a band man, the best musician I’ve played with, a drummer, guitar player, and singer with a song list bigger than any juke box made.


Tom Petty’s passing got to him. Las Vegas got to him. We talked about the usuals, but Tom and Vegas were dark clouds. Music needs more roots rockers and country.


My music mentor, call him Ray, and he wouldn’t agree with the mentor part, played county fairs in his dad’s band growing up. He sang with a band in SE Portland at a Hank Williams’ birthday bash, played drums and guitar at open mics.


With the dream of making a mark with music he set off for Los Angeles as a younger man and ended up in Nashville learning the trade of a studio sound guy. He’s got that sort of ear.


After we hung up I thought of the sadness and senseless acts visited on people and wondered how anyone could play music through it all. But they do.


And I thought of Floyd Country Store in Virginia, the little kids and old people sharing the same gift. Their joy was our joy, their journey our journey. Nothing could take that away. Never has and never will.


While the gut punch of loss and suffering hangs on, cue up Tom Petty and let it go for three minutes. Find a smile and let it shine for a moment.


Music helps. So does dancing and singing along.


My sister got lucky, married a yuppie
Took him for all he was worth
Now she’s a swinger dating a singer
I can’t decide which is worse

But not me baby, I’ve got you to save me
Oh yer so bad, best thing I ever had
In a world gone mad, yer so bad


Learn a song and play along.
About David Gillaspie
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