Here is a song that I started singing as a Renaissance Faire performer, 1982-1985, accompanied by mountain dulcimer. Nobody said a word about my off-period Ozark Mountain Dulcimer at Scarborough Faire; my songs, I tried to keep reasonably in period, in spirit, style and topic if not age. Fair Maid is a ballad from a very old family of trans-man, or anyway crossdressing, sailor and soldier folk ballads.
When Pegasus Project formed in 1991, I switched to guitar for the change from grove to stage. Everybody in the Band is in on this and I love that it ends with some jolly horn pipes on Linda’s fiddle.
It’s Saint Patrick’s Day Week, a time of the year when Pegasus Project was very busy in the years 1991-1993. Here’s a song I always enjoyed singing. Rupert Crabb plays accordion and Bodhran in this track. Linda Relph accompanies on fiddle and back-up vocals, then springs into a lively fiddle tune at the end.
Jenni sings and plays Bodhran for the band’s take on this old Scottish song; Rupert adds a second Bodhran. Linda, brilliant as always, adds the fiddle back up and ending tune. Recorded in 1992 for our album Ascension (no longer available.)
Through the next few months I will be making my earlier recordings available here online. I hope you enjoy them!
My song South Wind was recorded in 1990 not long after I won that year’s B.W. Stevenson Songwriting Contest in Dallas at Poor David’s Pub. A fellow contestant, Jim Jones (yes, that Jim Jones, the famous song and fiction writer in New Mexico) helped me by producing my first album of original songs, Big Wind.
The melody is also called South Wind, a traditional Irish harp and fiddle tune. This recording features Linda Relph on fiddle. This four-time California State Champ fiddler (just by 1990) had recently moved to Dallas, and we met at a Celtic Music Session at the old Tipperary Inn on Lower Greenville Avenue in Dallas. We later formed a band together with folk singer, Bodhran player and accordionist Rupert Crabb called Pegasus Project. We played hard for about three years and it was a blast.
As Tom and I have become more comfortable in our new home in southern Colorado, I have come to admire Coloradans’ good nature and practical respect for personal liberty. One of our current state senators, Michael Bennet, has raised his voice for justice and fairness towards all in our country, including families who are immigrants. Inclusiveness is an American ideal, along with liberty and justice for all, that is contained in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag that so many of us learned as students and repeated daily.
It’s to Sen. Michael Bennet and other leaders who are speaking up for the civil rights of ordinary people that I dedicate this song.