|Me and Grammy Rose|
So what do you get when you cross a Frenchmen, an English woman, a Scott, a few Indians, a Danish musician and possibly a milk man or two from an origin unknown.... why that would be ME. Or quite possibly you. I mean sure, we may have an idea of who our biological parents are, but do we really understand the past and all the lives, all the decisions, all the friends of friends and all the love that it took to give us this breath of air today?
When I wrote last and mentioned that "I owe ALL the music in my soul to my Mom", perhaps that was a little narrow in thought. Believe me, she does deserve honor and recognition for the musical influence she gave me... but perhaps it goes a little deeper than that. My bedroom, like many of yours, is scattered with family pictures. Most are of family I know, but I have a few from several generations back that my Grand Mother gave me on one of my visits to see her. The faces are strangers to me, but when I stop and look closely, sometimes they feel familiar. There's one picture I have of my great, great, great, uncle who has a violin in his arms. Maybe he was the one of ones that planted some of the seeds of music that genetically found their way to me many years later.
|Mom's Mom and Dad... dancing - maybe this is|
is where the music comes from.
Sometime in my early adulthood, Grammy sent me a book that she compiled with one side of my family tree. I can't image how many hours she spent gathering the skeletons of the past and aligning them along a timeline. This was way before the internet and the resources we have today, but seeing it laid out in front of me with pictures and maps, and lines that connect the parents to their children, newspaper articles and government records of birth, property, marriage and death.... it stirred my imagination and somehow made me feel more real. I have a sense of belonging now when I remember that all the souls and countless other undocumented lives... are the reason for me.
|My Rasmussen Family with me on the far right and Grandma and Grandpa on the left|
Just two days shy of her 99th birthday, Grammy Rose left us this past year. She gave us a wonderful legacy of a family tree that will be treasured for generations to come. She signed one of her letters to me with a PS at the bottom that says it all.... "Don't forget to snap a picture, write it down or sing it loud so someone else so can experience it too". I bet she's still out there somewhere, still driving her little yellow bug, taking pictures along the back roads.