iPod morning commute music: Emmylou Harris, Wrecking Ball (1995)
By the time I started listening to this this morning, I realized that it was the final piece in a series of coincidences. More on this below. First, Emmylou Harris is an artist underrepresented in my collection. I bought her second album, Elite Hotel (), when in first came out, and again when I started buying CDs. I also own Trio (), recorded with Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt and a greatest hits. Of course, she sang back-up and duets with Graham Parsons. But Wrecking Ball is special. First, it's not country. Produced by Daniel Lanois (U2, Bob Dylan), it is full of atmosphere. Second, Neil Young is helping out a bit, always nice. Mainly, though, it is a mature set of songs that sends shivers up the spine. A masterpiece, different and daring, especially for a singer just approaching 50.
Today, students and teachers from our sister school in Korea will be arriving for a 5-day visit. The students will be in home stays, with the teachers in a hotel near the school. This is a great program we run, as the common language is English, with all the students being non-native speakers (as opposed to our British sister school program and our summer home stay/study program in Australia). My involvement this year is minimal: I'll be one of the teachers meeting them at the airport this afternoon, will join the teachers for dinner tonight, and will help out with Monday's in-school program. Two years ago, though, I escorted students to Korea and was heavily involved in their visit here. One of the best parts of my job is my work with the international programs.
Yesterday, a friend in Seattle wrote that they were having trouble with the Korean home stay student they have hosted for at least a couple of years. I couldn't believe it, because this family is one of the most liberal, progressive and laid-back family I know. If a home stay student can't make it with them, they couldn't make it with anyone.
Then, this morning, I decided to listen to Emmylou. A few minutes into it, I realized the one time I saw Emmylou and her Hot Band live, around 1980, was with the same friend having problems with the Korean student. I was a student in Eastern Washington working on my second degree at the time, and a group of us drove over to Seattle for the concert, I believe at the Paramount Theater. Asleep at the Wheel opened the show. When Emmylou came out, we all shouted "Emmylou, we know someone who would drink your bathwater!" in reference to a mutual friend who couldn't make it to the concert. It was a great time, a great show.
And a weird feeling on the train at the coincidence of it all.