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A little late for his birthday, but what the heck - Saffron Rose's Garden of Life

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December 2nd, 2010

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05:16 am - A little late for his birthday, but what the heck
He always started with this, except for the last sets in Santa Monica. I don't think she was worth it, if what I've heard is true.

some really nice imagery here. Too bad I didn't have the nerve to ask Archie Fisher to sing this at his concert last month in Santa Cruz.

Stan wasn't the most attractive man in the world, just looking at him. When he started to sing or talk, well, I miss him. It's so ironic, Stan mostly bald, Garnet with his wonderful long hair and widow's peak. Now that man is handsome--yes, the hair is part of it. They are both grand and loyal men.

by Stan:

by Garnet (his brother):

by Nathan (stan's son)

This is where he sounds so much like his father
As you can see, the Rogers men each have their own styles

Music by Garnet, to words by the 19 century English clergyman and novelist, Charles Kingsley (Water Babies was his)

Who will know the Bluenose in the sun?

Bluenose was the name of my first car, an old VW Fastback, bought the year Stan died (1983). She had a Canadian dime, with the Bluenose cutout to display it, tied to her rearview window stem.

In December 1992, I was at Epcot in the Canadian exhibit round film room. This song came on as the soundtrack to the 360˚ film by which we were surrounded. I began to weep. It was another year or two before I'd be able to choose to hear Stan's music--before then, I would just cry if I heard it. His loss still hurt that intensely.
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative

(8 comments | and then you say)


[User Picture]
Date:December 2nd, 2010 01:53 pm (UTC)
I looove Stan Rogers. What a magnificent voice. His rendition of "Witch of the Westmoreland" has utterly captured my imagination. And "The Mary Ellen Carter" always makes me feel good. Wikipedia has this note about that song:

So inspiring is the song that it is credited with saving at least one life. On February 12, 1983 the ship Marine Electric was carrying a load of coal from Norfolk, Virginia to a power station in Somerset, Massachusetts. The worst storm in forty years blew up that night and the ship sank at about four o'clock in the morning on the 13th. The ship's Chief Mate, fifty-nine-year-old Robert M. ("Bob") Cusick, was trapped under the deckhouse as the ship went down. His snorkeling experience helped him avoid panic and swim to the surface, but he had to spend the night alone, up to his neck in water, clinging to a partially deflated lifeboat, and in water barely above freezing and air much colder. Huge waves washed over him, and each time he was not sure that he would ever reach the surface again to breathe. Battling hypothermia, he became tempted to allow himself to fall unconscious and let go of the lifeboat. Just then he remembered the words to the song "The Mary Ellen Carter".

And you, to whom adversity has dealt the final blow
With smiling bastards lying to you everywhere you go
Turn to, and put out all your strength of arm and heart and brain
And like the Mary Ellen Carter, rise again.

Rise again, rise again—though your heart it be broken
Or life about to end.
No matter what you've lost, be it a home, a love, a friend,
Like the Mary Ellen Carter, rise again.

He started to sing it and soon was alternating shouting out "Rise again, rise again" with holding his breath as the waves washed over him. At seven o'clock that morning a Coast Guard helicopter spotted him and pulled him to safety.[1] Only two men of the other thirty-three that had been aboard survived the wreck. After his ordeal, Cusick wrote a letter to Stan Rogers telling him what had happened and how the song helped save his life. In response, Cusick was invited to attend what turned out the be the second-to-last concert Rogers ever performed. Cusick told his story in the documentary about Stan Rogers, One Warm Line.

I swear to the gods, every time I read that story, I get teary.

Edited at 2010-12-02 13:56 (UTC)
[User Picture]
Date:December 2nd, 2010 02:21 pm (UTC)
I think Cusick, as a name, is found in The Field Behind the Plow--"Poor old Cusick down the road had a heart attack and died at 42/You could see it in his eyes, 'cause he worked as hard as you"

I saw that clip of him telling his Stan story. Just Wow.

I was able to see every single one of Stan's LA area performances--we'd pay McCabe's in Santa Monica for 4 concerts the weekend, then stand in line early to get front seats, and then go in early and help set up.

There's a guy I met at a James Keelaghan concert--his first in the Monterey Bay area--who was at the last concert Stan gave before Kerrville. He'd recorded it, and he gave me a CD of his tape of that night. I met Joe on a Canadian Music list. He'd asked if he should go to Keelo's concert, and I wrote to the list and said, Yes. You're going to meet me there. Joe was a widower with a special-needs kid, who eventually married someone he met off another musician's list, at one of her concerts in Chicago.

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