TITLE: Report From Grimes Creek
AUTHOR: Rosalie Sorrels
PUBLISHER: Green Linnet
"These stories are familiar to everyone. We each have a place that holds our heart - a Querencia, a corner one turns, a familiar street, a stream, a reflection in a glass that suddenly all the dear past floods into the heart and mind. Mine is a hand-made cabin about 30 miles from Boise, Idaho on Grimes Creek. I live in this place now - it is my life source, my taproot. As long as it is here, I feel at home wherever I go."
"My mother's father said we are Antaeus people. Antaeus, the son of Gaea, The Earth Mother, was the giant who wrestled with Hercules. Each time he was hurled to the ground, Antaeus would rise stronger that before, taking his strength from the living earth. Only when Hercules held him aloft and kept him physically from the earth was he defeated. When I am weak and weary, feeling beaten, I come back to touch this piece of earth and I return like Antaeus - stronger than before."
"These songs are my mother's favorites. Her name is Nancy Stringfellow. In Idaho, I'm better known as Nancy Stringfellow's daughter than as the folk singer, Rosalie Sorrels. I hope these memories stir each listener's sweetest recollections."
So read the liner notes from this, the fifteenth album recorded by Rosalie Sorrels. The album itself is really just a continuation - or expansion - of these notes. It's a memoir of Rosalie's parents, and their parents. Oh, there is music, too - good music - but it serves a purely secondary function, quite properly.
I've been a big fan of Rosalie Sorrels ever since I first saw her in concert at the Salt Lake Arts Center nearly ten years ago. I've seen her perform occasionally since then, and I've purchased several of her albums. The concerts are uniformly wonderful, and the albums have been - till now - disappointing. This is the first album which attempts to capture the combination of stories and music which make her concerts special. And judging by the number of times I've played the album, sitting captivated by her reminiscences - it's a resounding success.
Also from the liner notes:
"Limberlost Press announces the publication of 'Report From Grimes Creek After A Hard Winter' by Nancy Stringfellow: a memoir comprised of five short essays, three poems, and a letter, with an introduction by her daughter Rosalie Sorrels. Avaliable from Green Linnet Records..."
And Rosalie was interviewed on NPR late this summer in connection with the release of her latest recording, titled something like "Be Quiet, There's a Baby in the House". This album deals with the subject of abortion, presumably on a very personal level: at age 16, Rosalie had a back-alley abortion and nearly bled to death. Two years later and pregnant again, she moved into a home for unwed expectant mothers in L.A., and gave up her child for adoption. This, she says, was tougher than the earlier abortion.
I've been unable to find this album anywhere, or even verify that it has been released. If anyone else sees it, or hears of it, please let me know.