Was just in a crowded kitchen, mashing potatoes, listening to Dori Freeman’s new album, and thinking about how great a Thanksgiving soundtrack it makes. It hit me during “Ern & Zorry’s Sneakin’ Bitin’ Dog,” a tune written by Freeman’s grandfather, Willard Gayheart — Letters Never Read is what it sounds like to be surrounded by family. Carrying forward traditions and putting your own spin on them. Enjoying the company and quirks of aunts, uncles, kids, and in-laws. Her arrangement of “Ern & Zorry’s Sneakin’ Bitin’ Dog” is as simple as it gets — just her voice — like an old recipe rendered with care. It made for a moment of calm contentment amid a chaos for which I’m very fortunate.
Whatever you’re spinning, I wish you and yours a very happy Thanksgiving.
I made a Spotify playlist, and while the majority of songs on there wouldn’t necessarily be described as new, it should do the trick. If you have a third helping of stuffing and gravy tonight and need to run a few extra miles tomorrow, I reckon it’ll help you along. (Especially if you like the Pitch Perfect soundtrack.)
Check out the playlist below. I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving.
In a few hours, I’ll be heading home to Norfolk for Thanksgiving for the first time in a handful of years. Normally I’d post a YouTube video of someone lighting a driveway on fire while trying to fry a turkey, but recent events have brought the holiday’s shady origins a little too close to the front of my mind, and it just doesn’t seem funny this time around.
Instead, I’ll leave you with a song about going home that contains the following verse, which seems fitting both for the holiday and for this particular moment in history:
Gee, it’s great to be alive
Takes the skin right off my hide
To think I’ll have to give it all up someday
That’s where being truly thankful starts. Hope everyone reading this has a great Thanksgiving.
To all you parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme slingin’ epicureans, hard at work on some delicious stuffing — don’t forget, Alton Brown says to cook it OUTSIDE THE BIRD to avoid having to choose between dry meat and salmonella — I present to you Sérgio Mendes’ scrumptious version of “Scarborough Fair.”