Another fine performance by Cincinnati's favorite band, Jake Speed and the Freddies. Pay particular attention to my son, the group's guest drummer for the Rivertown Breakdown show. He has a drum solo around 2:30. As their bio says, the music of Jake Speed and the Freddies "leaps right out of Depression-era freight trains and right into Ohio River steamboats" much to the delight of their enthusiastic fans. And most of all, it was fun to see Rory pick up the sticks for this show!
Seeing Quest for Fire something like two decades ago illustrated the harsh conditions that our caveman ancestors faced as they tried to eek out their daily existence. Now we learn that they did indeed have a little magic in their lives because if music isn't magic, I don't know what is. According to this NPR piece, archaeologists have found the world's oldest musical instruments, flutes fashioned from vulture bone and mammoth tusks, on the floor of a German cave. I find it pretty amazing and a testament to the human need for the emotional pull of music that cave people would take the time and trouble to carefully craft these flutes.
Are these THE FIRST musical instruments, though? I recall a bit by Little Jimmy Dickens way, way back when Hee Haw was on the air, where he claimed he could play the world's first musical instrument ... a leaf! He whipped out this leaf, placed it horizontally between his lips and proceeded to get all sorts of music out of it. Since cave people were all consumed with finding food and staying safe, I'll bet the very first music was indeed made with things like leaves, sticks and people's voices. Sure wish we could hear it. I'll bet it was absolutely beautiful.
A couple years ago, I posted a note about how Southwest cheerfully and quickly re-booked Rory and myself on a different flight to LA so we could beat a snowstorm that stood in the way of an important medical appointment out in Cali. And this was during Christmas season, no less! Come to think of it, I've never had a bad experience on Southwest, a company with a good attitude and a great business plan. Here's the rapping Southwest flight attendant.