About Me

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Lake Mathews (Perris), CA, United States
Born in Illinois, I grew up in Wilmette, a northern suburb of Chicago. I have one sibling, an older brother. I am married, for the 2nd time now, to Butch & got 4 children in the deal. They have gone on to make me grandmother 25 times over & great-grandmother to over 20!. After many years working in industry, I got my bachelors and masters degrees in speech communication, & was a professor in that field for 13 years. I retired in 2001 & returned to school & got my doctorate in folklore. Now I meld my two interests - folklore & genealogy - & add my teaching background, resulting in my current profession: speaker/author/entertainer of genealogically-related topics. I play many folk instruments, but my preference is guitar, which I have been playing since 1963. I write the "Aunty Jeff" column for the Informer, newsletter of the Jefferson County NY Gen. Soc. I work in partnership with Gena Philibert-Ortega & Sara Cochran as Genealogy Journeys® where we focus on educating folks about Social History. More about that: genaandjean.blogspot.com. More on our podcasts: genjourneys.podbean.com. More about my own projects: Circlemending.org.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Sunday Singalong with Circlemending: Remembering

Memorial day is upon us. A good time to remember. I'm at a campout with Songmakers and enjoying all sorts of music throughout the weekend. This morning was the traditional "Songs of Meaning" period where songs ranged through everything from remembering family members to religious upbringings to special times, along with some songs people might not have felt were "meaningful," yet held some sort of meaning to the singer. Many were in tears, remembering loved ones, times gone by, and private things they shared only internally. I sang a song I wrote for two 2st cousins, 3 times removed - both children - buried in a cemetery in New York. A guitarist and fiddler teamed to play one of my favorites: "Music Box Dancer" (I love that song and get a happy feeling when I hear it, but could not explain what it is or why it conjures up such good feelings). In a large circle, people held hands to sing "Will the Circle be Unbroken?" while some musicians accompanied from outside the ring. When people join together to sing a song, the feeling is one of unity. We can share those memories through songs.

With Memorial Day less than 24 hours away, what songs bring back memories for you? Certainly, songs that memorialize our military dead are most appropriate, but so are any songs that take you to a time, a person, a place, or an event long (or short) past. Share it here.

1 comment:

  1. I love Memorial Day because it brings back so many family memories of parades and picnics and songs. I love God Bless America by Kate Smith which is one of my all time favorites


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