2015 — Visiting Our Mountain…

Such a beautiful, untouched lonely feeling place, such a fine part of what I call the ‘Faraway’. It is a place I have painted before … even now I must do it again.Georgia O’Keefe

There are still places you can go in the world where you can see the stars, hear the rattlesnakes and look in awe upon our mountain — a mountain that belongs not to any individual, company or government, but to all of humanity, all of us.

On the other side of that mountain, located in the Rio Chama Canyon Wilderness, Georgia O’Keefe created art at Ghost Ranch, roughly a two hour drive away, that touches everyone with a heart. I can see why she called it the Faraway after spending five days there in October. I would like to return there again and again for as long as I can.

Randy Crouch‘s song, Hope You Make It, kept finding its way into my ears during this journey to the point where I didn’t care about the rattlesnakes, I wasn’t afraid of the coyotes, and I wept more than once at the beauty before and around me:

randySo if you’re working on your vision
Let me give you all a hand
With your plan, cause I guess that’s part of mine
I’ve made my own decision
To be moving while I can
To a land that may take some help to find

I hope you make it to the mountains
Maybe we all can meet up there
Before we’ve poisoned all the water
And polluted all the air
Now and love will live together
Just wait and see how this world ends, whenever this world ends
At least whatever happens, it’s been good to be with friends

— Randy Crouch, Hope You Make It

Looking back on 2015, I feel like George Bailey when Clarence tells him that he’s really had a wonderful life. I got to visit our mountain. I got to see Georgia O’Keefe’s art at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Arkansas and where she created some of it in New Mexico. I got to see Tom Skinner play music four or five times in 2015 before he passed on and Oklahoma’s music community was heart broken. And I got meet some darned nice people and watch and listen to some of these fine artists play music.

So, here’s music playlist I put together to remind me of the year that was.

  1. Outside the PaleSamantha Crain | Under Branch & Thorn & Tree
  2. Everything You NeedCarter Sampson | Wilder Side
  3. Stubborn LoveLarkin Poe | KIN
  4. When Numbers Get SeriousPaul Simon | Hearts and Bones
  5. MoveHarumph | Harumph EP
  6. Ticket Taker BluesMiss Brown To You | Roll Away
  7. Mania (A Song of Inspiration)Kyle Reid | Don’t Be Afraid…
  8. Cleveland County BluesJohn Moreland | High on Tulsa Heat
  9. Daisy and CloverJohn Calvin Abney | Vice Versa Suite – EP
  10. Wake UpAnnie Oakley | Thought of You a God – EP
  11. God’s Gonna Cut You DownKaitlin Butts | Same Hell, Different Devil
  12. Me And My Broken HeartCary Morin | Tiny Town
  13. Curley & MeJoe Baxter | Pick Rash
  14. Ain’t Dead YetNellie Clay | Never Did What I Should Have Done
  15. Dust Bowl OkiesJimmy LaFave | The Night Tribe
  16. Iron RoosterFoo Fighters | Saint Cecilia – EP
  17. Buzzkill(er)The Dead Weather | Dodge and Burn
  18. TrialsAaron Pierce | Yesterday’s Changes
  19. Whole Lot Of Your SoulTom Skinner | Binky Records Sampler
  20. Hope You Make ItRandy Crouch | Me And You

Some of the music I listened in 2015 to was brand new, but a lot of it, such as Randy’s and Tom’s songs, were just new to me and they touched me in a special place.

New Mexico was new to me too and it is a very special place. Maybe you can visit our mountain in 2016.

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