Wellesley Station-Wellesley Station was a stop on the Washington, Idaho and Montana Railroad in Latah County, Idaho. My mother, Suzanne Spencer Hornbuckle, was born near there and while you will never find it on a map I know it existed....because I do - if you get my drift.
The South Road-In 1846 my mother's great, great grandparents, Wilson and Abigail Lee, joined a wagon train in Holt County, Missouri, bound for the Oregon Country on the Emigrant Road. They followed the Applegate, or South Road, to Oregon and settled in Polk County OR, near present day Dallas. I'd like to think there might have been a banjo player or two amongst the company of emigrants.
The Crooked Man-The Crooked man was written during the first term of Geo. Bush, the lesser, and was inspired by the nursery rhyme of the same name. When I asked John to play fiddle on the tune I used one word-greazy. And that's exactly what he did...nice and greazy.
Hopping Harvey-Harvey is a cat. Harvey likes to hop.
Fleetwood's Ford-Houston 'Hewes' Fleetwood, my paternal great, great grandfather's brother, founded a store and ferry crossing on the Red River in the Terral Indian Territory, OK in the 1880's. He grubstaked half the neighbourhood and his financial support was crucial to the success of many prosperous farmers, ranchers and businessmen in the area. Special kudos to Ivan's evocative, Knopfler-esque solo.
Chausson de Ruby-In a different story, we're standing together outside a shop on a busy city street. She's tall, fierce, 20-something. Her auburn hair is cut short but not so short as to hide the curl. Her green eyes flash at me, she smiles, turns and is gone. It takes everything I've got to not skip ahead to see if we meet again.
Cleo Belle-The best swimming hole in the world in located in Nanaimo, BC and can only be found by them what knows where it is. My daughter, Cleo, taught herself to swim there and if you can imagine the chimes in the tune are the sounds of the splashes made by the most beautiful little girl in the world as she jumps into the water of the best swimming hole in the world well...mission accomplished.
Zebadiah's Stomp-When my nephew Zebadiah was born, I had no idea he would become the fine young man that he is today. Further, I am fully convinced that had he been born in a different time, he would have been the subject of the kind of novels that celebrated the likes of Kit Carson and Jim Bridger....he's certainly got the name for it.
13 or So-When did it change for you? When did you realize that childhood was passing away? That there was a pretty big world out there and that it was at best indifferent? When did nostalgia, and the knowledge of possibilities, good and bad, make you slightly more and more conscious of the tick tock, tick tock ...13 or so. Trent and Joe really shine on this number.
A Farewell(to the Cowgirl with the Pigtails)-My mother was endlessly loving and supportive of my brother and I. She encouraged me to 'just stick with it' when I was struggling to make something, anything, close to music emerge from my banjo. She and my dad Chuck were instrumental in my success. She passed away suddenly, unexpectedly, September 9, 2015, the same day I was nominated as Instrumental Solo Artist of the year by the Canadian Folk Music Association. I'm sure she would have appreciated the O. Henry-ness of it all. I love you Zana.