The Sounds of Sunday

This may be my favorite Mike and Connie composition!! It’s called “Firefly”. Which bring a question to my mind. Why does Tennessee call Lightin’ Bugs …Fireflies? Mike wrote this song in honor of the Elkmont Fireflies, which is just down the road a piece.

There are two spots in the world, as Mike says, where you can see fireflies do their synchronous flights. You heard me right…sychronized. The below vid best represents the patterns that they follow…1 blink, then all heck breaks loose as the males will blink together in pulses. Then stop. Then start again. The video has been color corrected to enhance the lighting patterns. Imagine sitting at Elkmont and seeing this. It’s one thing to watch them in my backyard but in a designed pattern?! One of these days, I’m going to Elkmont!

Connie playing her Bowed Psaltery

Anyway, a while back, I wrote a piece about the Clemmers here.  For years, Mike and Connie Clemmer have entertained us at the ChristyFest with their soulful music…coming from lap dulcimers, bowed psaltery and Ban Jammers, which, BTW, Mike invented.  My first visit to Townsend included a stop at their shop, Wood N Strings.  I was intrigued.  I was overwhelmed.  I was impressed. 

Mike with one of his handmade dulcimers

Mike makes many of the instruments and a subsequent search at YouTube confirms that many dulcimers players play an instrument that he has made with his own two hands.  That really appealed to me.  I walked out with a gorgeous walnut dulcimer with deer cutouts that made my Sears and Roebuck mail order dulcimer (made in China) sound like a tin can. 

My baby!

This year, they once again played, along with Don Mitchum on his guitar, for our Sunday morning worship time at the Talley Ho Inn.  And what a time it was!!  I’ll apologize for the friend who sat with me at the service…you get more of her than I had planned.  Big mouth…and no, Marilyn, I am not referring to your nice soprano voice!!

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