Grab your boots and guitar and get ready to celebrate some country music! First recorded in the 1920’s and originating from the southeastern United States this music as endured for almost a hundred years. Originally called hillbilly music, it soon became known as “country and western” with singing cowboys like Gene Autry and Roy Rogers creating what music producers considered a more commercial image. Versions such as country rock and country pop developed in the 60’s in an attempt compete with rock and roll. But, part of the appeal of country music is it’s ridiculous simplicity. It’s music born on front porches when someone decided to pick up a guitar or banjo and simply sing whatever came to mind. My father used to produce country western music shows when I was a kid so this music always reminds me of him as well as my childhood. At the time, I didn’t really know or understand the Grand Ole Opry tour bus that was parked outside our home. I just thought it was cool to have celebrities come over for a party, or that my mom once baked a birthday cake in the shape of guitar (for Waylon Jennings, whom I didn’t know at all, either, but a guitar cake? So cool!). Suffice it to say, it was definitely the music of my youth.

Though I mostly adored folk music as a kid, there were many country songs that I loved as well. I was actually a huge fan of Ray Charles, so my favorite country song was his version of “I Can’t Stop Loving You.” Yeah, folk, blues, and jazz were actually at the top of my list, but my dad always had a lot of country music playing as well. My dad passed away over 15 years ago now, but I can still remember him choosing music on the jukebox he purchased to decorate his recreation room. He was, like me, a kid at heart. And music was an important part of his life as well. His brusque manner often made him seem harsh, but I now remember that he would hang on each word of those songs. It was only after his death that my mother revealed to me that he used to read poetry to her. I had no idea, nor would this have been something I could have guessed from him at the time. But looking back now, it probably shouldn’t have come as much of a surprise. We weren’t really so different after all. And we may not have agreed on the precise musical genre, but we both enjoyed listening for the truth in those songs.

As I get older and hopefully wiser, I have fond memories of that time with my dad. Those moments when we didn’t have to endure our awkward attempts at conversation, but could just silently and suddenly agree on everything as we enjoyed the words sung by Ray Charles. That’s the beautiful thing about music. It’s more than words and melody. It’s a shared emotion that can be enjoyed but two people who seem to have nothing in common. And though country music isn’t my favorite, even today, I still smile each time I hear it. It’s not usually poetic or profound, but simply a celebration of the best bits of life along with the most loved clichés that life has to offer. And though my dad only ever drank beer and moonshine, I raise my wine of glass to him in this moment for a silent toast. I can still hear the music, dad, and I miss you each and every day. I remember each strum of those guitars and banjos of my youth and they always bring back a flood of wonderful memories. A melody of life at its simplest that reminds me of an enduring love. To me, there’s no better reason to smile and celebrate on this Country Music Day.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Aureolin, Vermilion, and Indigo (My “Vintage” Trio!).  Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
Day 17 - Country Music Day Guitar Boots Watercolor - Doodlewash

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30 thoughts on “Country Music Day

  1. What a lovely way to remember your father – music is so evocative and can bring certain moments back to life so vividly. Those boots you’ve painted seem pure Elvis to me, but then his music edged into country and western at times. Hmmm. I’ll have to see if I can find my Cd of the Million Dollar Quartet with Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and Johnny Cash, Haven’t listened to that for a while.

    1. Thanks, Sandra! 😃💕Yeah, this post made me go back and listen to some of those old songs. It always makes me smile. Plus I can understand what the heck the point of the song is, which seems to be tougher with newer music. Which basically just means I’m old! lol

  2. I’d be willing to bet there were tears in your eyes when you wrote this post.
    I know there were tears in my eyes as I read it. I hope you realize you honor community by sharing these little pieces of yourself . Thank you.

    1. Thank you so much, Sarah! 😃💕 Yes, there were indeed tears in my eyes when I wrote this. Every so often that happens with these posts. I have no idea what memory or idea will come out when I sit down to quickly type them. I’m glad you connect with them. It’s been a wonderful experience with the podcast to rediscover posts I’ve completely forgotten. (and yes, a way to organize them as I go into that book 😉

    1. Thanks, Anita! 😃💕 Yeah, wow… this time I did manage to stay on topic the entire time! lol It happens a lot more this month as the random day isn’t always what I feel like talking about. But it’s a fun to see what comes out! 😉

  3. Aww, what an endearing post Charlie. I was raised on country music because of my father who was a real hillbilly from the Appalachian mountains in Kentucky. I listened to Gospel at church and at home when my Dad wasn’t around. I have to admit that I was a fan of C&W until I was 20. My first real rock and roll song that I heard and it was “Jeremiah Had a Bull Frog” I was a child at the time but if that is Rick and roll, no thank you!!! Anyway I really appreciate your comments about how music brought your some fond memories of your Dad. So interesting how time and age changes our perspective. ❤️

    1. Thanks so much, Margaret! 😃💕 So happy you enjoyed this post. And sounds like we grew up with similar music. Yeah, “Jeremiah” probably wasn’t the best intro to rock and roll… I still have no idea what that sound was about. hehe

  4. Cheers to you and your dad, Charlie. I love visiting Nashville and listening to all the old standards, which often had very clever, witty plays on words. As I’ve aged, I’ve grown appreciation for many musical genres that I never thought I’d enjoy. As long as it creates joy of some sort, I’ll listen. 🍷🍺💖

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