Odetta Awesome

Sunday, after a long day at the news shack reporting on freshly erupting new fires, the scanner sparked up and I found myself on my way to a domestic violence episode that had turned into a hostage situation with threats and guns.

I drove through the warm night toward fresh mayhem listening to the Folk Show on the Ashland NPR station. Cool songs funky, rocking, super soulful and then Odetta!

She was singing “Lowlands.” It was awesome.

Not Valley girl awesome. Not Christian, WalMart, soccer-mom awesome but truly  the power-of-the-universe-in-a-human-body awesome. No “Lowlands” on youtube but:

In this second video, as short as it is, you can see, like I heard last night, the tree of folk music branching out from Odetta’s mighty trunk.

I swear it seemed to me in that moment of hearing “Lowlands” that Fred Neil  copped all of his stuff from Odetta. There is no live video of Fred Neil but you can hear him:

And hence, Tim Buckley is right there, too. Try and watch these and not be touched by something:

I could go on for days about Tim Buckley.

And the son he didn’t know, JEff Buckley:

Jeff had his own inspirational women:

What a brave boy, that Jeff. He covered this song at a show in San Francisco. Thank God for all those people who recorded Jeff’s shows.

Still, somehow, you must hear Odetta sing “Lowlands.”

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