I had the Everly Brothers biggest hits lp. I was never a fan but I did like a couple of those tracks for melodramatic reasons: ‘Crying In The Rain’ is hard to resist. What I didn’t realize then was that the collection were re-recordings for the most part. The original tapes lost in a studio fire. I remember their TV show being fun. But their sound was just too country for me to really make me a fan.
When Warner Archives released a two cd set of those hits with the original, now found, recordings I was happy to add it to my collection. They were a duo trapped by their genre – young enough to want to become more hip they weren’t encouraged to do so. Tight harmonies, songs of teen angsty romance or longing for farm grown purity. Perish the thought that they might want to do a song about the war in Nam.
I have vague memories of their TV show – similar to Smothers Brothers, Sonny & Cher – songs, sketches but with a more country feel – not as cornpone as Hee-Haw. I should check YouTube to see if any episodes of it have been uploaded. They were good clean American boy-next-door – who like most too-young for fame went through booze, drugs, solo careers & opted to step back from the limelight for awhile satisfied with what they had done. Their last studio lp was in 1988.
Near them on the shelf are a pair of Cesarea Evora CD’s: Cesarea, Cabo Verde – another of those rich, warm, evocative world music voices out of Africa. She sings in Portuguese, French, various native languages as well. Like Mercedes Sosa – it is the emotional quality of the voice that draws me in – I have read English translations of the songs – they’re about love of the land, loss of love, the discovery of love. Discover her & you’ll be grateful for it.
Mike peered down from the outcrop over the clearing. If he hadn’t stopped sharp his next step would have taken him over and down a twenty foot drop into the crowd below.
Drums played. Pounded.
People – men women moved in intricate patterns stepping along a series of patterns marked with bluish stones on the ground. A foot would touch each point and the person would spin, hands raised and head lowered, spin and move on to the next stone.
As he watched the motion began to form into something he recognized. The slither of a giant snake, a human snake sliding and slipping endlessly over the clearing.
He could hear some vocal sounds come up but not distinctly enough for him to tell if it was words or just a chant. He would have laid on the ground to get closer but the outcrop was hemmed in by thick trees. He felt his sweat trickle down his back. Insects fluttered past him.
The drums became faster.
At the tip, what he guessed was the mouth of the serpent, was a fire. Peering he saw three figures step out from the ripple of people. The ripple stopped. The central figure was Robert! He was sure it was Robert. The flicker of flames made the face hard to see clearly but the body movements and shape was unmistakable.
The drumming stopped. The came the voice:
‘We have gathered here for this moment.’
The voice was Robert’s. Without the drums he could hear.
‘This is the season of sacrifice
the night of plenty and innocence
and we call here
the three red stars
the snake of green kind giving
and he replies
we know he will reply
he will bring us all
he will accept this sacrifice.”
Two women brought forth a goat. It kicked and bleated. They stopped before Robert and held it still. Two men joined them and they turned the goat over so the soft stomach was exposed. A silver knife flashed in Robert’s hand as he held it high above his head.
we present this small gift
this hint of what is to be given
for what you have to give to us.’
Mike felt hands on his back. A shove and he fell forward.
The drums started.