I have a confession: I don't know much about music, especially contemporary music. For example, I know that there are bands out there called Arcade Fire and Mumford & Sons, but if you played me a track from either of them, I wouldn't be able to tell who played what. This is why when I go to karaoke, I almost exclusively sing songs from before the mid-90s. There are some contemporary artists I love, but I don't search them out and once I fall in love, I'll listen to them over and over again. I turn CBC Radio One on when I get up and it stays on until at least lunch, sometimes all day. Despite the best efforts of Jian Ghomeshi and the good folks at Q, my musical education has been stalled.
These days, I've been listening almost exclusively to Old Time Mountain Music. I borrowed it from a friend years ago, ripped it, returned it, and mostly forgot about it until recently. I can't get enough of this mountain music bluegrass, especially Ola Belle Reed. The song below is on the collection. (Don't bother watching the video, but just listen to her. Amazing, no?)
I did a little sleuthing, and it looks like there are a couple of Ola Belle Reed collections and I'm going to add this one to my Christmas wish list.
I don't know what it is about this kind of music, but it speaks to me. It is raw and honest, it comes from a place of beauty and hardship. I have no connection to where this music was made, but I wish I did. Perhaps my heart is a banjo. I don't know.