Shifting On The Left
I’ve lost track. I think this might be the 15th UK tour I’m about to embark on but I don’t honestly remember.
Like a lot of things in life it started serendipitously. My friend Chelle Rose was meeting BBC DJ Bob Harris over at a studio somewhere in Nashville where he was broadcasting live from the Americana Music Association convention. Chelle just wanted a few minutes of hand holding since she had never played on the radio and the broadcast was going out to who knows how many thousands of listeners all over the globe. So, blackberry cobbler [Chelle is a full on East Tennessee native with all the cooking acumen, sensitive mothering and potential ass whooping implied with that birthright] a guitar and a couple extra cds in hand we went over to the broadcast.
Bob Harris was a vision. Looking every lanky centimeter like the very embodiment of the BBC broadcaster in my head, Bob welcomed us graciously and Chelle waited for her turn.
Tony Joe White was there as well as a few other folks I’ve forgotten about at this point because Tony Joe White was there.
Chelle played her song and introduced me to Bob who obsessed over the cobbler he insisted on calling a crumble. Chelle generously gave Bob a copy of my first cd Tiger Tom Dixon’s Blues and off we went. I was proud of her. She had sounded great and I could tell Bob was genuinely charmed by her soaking wet kerosene rag east Tennessee accent. Also the crumble/cobbler.
A few weeks later Bob played a song of mine called “On and On” from the cd. I couldn’t believe it. I was played on the BBC radio. A few weeks later I played my first show ever in England and while playing On and On I was dumbfounded as I watched folks singing along with me to a song they couldn’t possibly know. I got chills.
A few years later I ran into Bob Harris and the first thing he said was “does Chelle still make that berry crumble? I think this is the 15th tour with thanks to Chelle and Bob for starting my addiction to Magners Cider, skinny hotel beds and shifting on the left.