Friday, August 23, 2013

3 Chords & the Truth: Plain as black and white

One thing always has puzzled me about the South, where I was born and raised.

It's the whole race thing, including the region's checkered past in that regard -- what with slavery, a war fought to defend slavery, Jim Crow after the war thing didn't work out, segregation, freak-outs over miscegenation, freak-outs over integration, nullification, racism, state's rights and a lack of civil rights.

With all these skeletons in our Dixie closet, you get the impression that black folk and white folk can't get along. All too often, that was -- and is -- true.

What's ironic about this -- and this is something we demonstrate a little bit on this week's edition of 3 Chords & the Truth -- is that Southern white folk are, without a doubt, the blackest white folk on Earth. And to all this country's African-Americans who have qualms about their ethnic and racial cohorts "acting white," I just want to say that it's quite all right.

WHITE Southerners like me and mine have been acting black for ages -- even when that went against the official Jim Crow party line. Irony, thy name is Dixie.

We survived, and indeed, I think, prospered culturally for it. From what, exactly, do you think the Big Show emerged almost fully formed? From me playing my white parents' black R&B records (and their white country ones, too) as a young kid in the segregated South.

Irony. Complexity. Music. Life.

That was and is the South, and that pretty much is what you get, too, on 3 Chords & the Truth. Let's just say you'll be amazed at how much in common Ruth Brown has with Jerry Byrd & the String Dusters' hillbilly assemblage.

That's pretty much where I started on this show post, and I guess that's where I'll leave it, too.

It's 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.

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