This show almost didn’t appear: all week I’ve been chasing my tail ….. unsuccessfully. I’ve known for 5 days that I would feature Iris but I couldn’t get going. This had nothing to do with the music but was all about me.
I know for many of you Iris may seem a strange choice because she can’t be categorised as a great. I realised that I have been setting a trap for myself. This show was meant to highlight music that I like but over time I have moved towards “doing” stars, greats, whose music I like. Lots of music I love would be excluded by this unintentional criterion and so, just in time, I have seen the error of my ways.
After this preamble, welcome to this week’s show. Grab a coffee, or a tea if you must, sit down, relax and let the music envelop you.
Let’s start with some music and then I’ll talk to you about Iris.
Surprisingly I start with Iris not leading but accompanying another singer. Why? This is a lovely song written by Iris.
You’ve Done Nothing Wrong
Jacqui Abbott with Iris Dement
Those who listened to Saturday’s Morning Music may recognise Jacqui who was , for 7 years, a vocalist with The Beautiful South.
What a great song! Thanks, Iris.
What a fabulous voice! Thanks, Jacqui.
Did you notice Jacqui glancing down to read the words? According to a commenter she only saw the words 30 mins before the show!
Iris was born in 1961 - a mere youngster she is – her mother’s eighth child and her father’s fourteenth!
Wikipedia describes her thus:
“DeMent's songs are typically simple, clearly told stories about life's pains and joys.”
Possibly but they are very worthy and worthwhile songs.
Sweet is the Melody
This video is from an stv programme but I’m not sure if that stands for Scottish Television or Slug Television.
Sweet is the voice we hear, O Iris!
I first heard of Iris through the BBC programmes, Transatlantic Sessions, and when I featured John Prine in the first show of 2010 show I included a duet with Iris - In Spite of Ourselves.
Today John returns the favour.
Let’s Invite Them Over with John Prine
A lovely silly song.
What happens when we die? Iris say’s that she will
Let the Mystery Be
Some must know but for others there is no need but we don’t need to get into a heavyweight discussion. The song is the song is lovely.
We move into the second half with a political song: a great song.
Wasteland of the Free
The video is unwatchable for the first 30 secs or so, the camera movement settles until after 1min it’s OK.
“We kill for oil, then we throw a party when we win
Some guy refuses to fight, and we call that the sin
but he's standing up for what he believes in
and that seems pretty damned American to me
and it feels like I am living in the wasteland of the free”
One commenter says of our next song,
“….. just because someone claims to be Christian, that of itself does not make them a Christian. I do love the truth in this song!”
If you’re not put off by this then enjoy.
I hope you had as big a laugh as I did.
Only two more songs to go in a show of lower virtuosity than some but a happy and enjoyable time … for me, at least.
Here we have Iris writing about music at home in her early life.
We finish up this week with my favourite.
A lovely song with which to end and great accompaniment.
There has been a very different tone about the show this week: I haven’t been in raptures but that’s no bad thing. Music can touch and move without being “of a mega-star”. Iris’ music has touched and moved me and I can ask no more than this.
Well, that’s it for another week. I hope you enjoyed your coffee and the music. Tune in again next week and thanks for listening.