One of the South’s greatest musical treasures is a gospel singing group that has been around since 1939, called the Blind Boys of Alabama. The longtime leader of that group is, at age 91, retiring after a lifetime of singing. In this week's commentary, Salvation South editor Chuck Reece reflects on a recent visit with the singer and a lasting memory of one of the singer's performances.
Too often, we do not think about the first thing that comes out of our mouths in a conversation. After many years of paying very close attention to the first lines of books and magazine articles, Salvation South editor Chuck Reece has a few ideas about why we should give our first words a little more thought in this week’s commentary.
When we think about “folk music,” most of us think about music that sounds a certain way. But really, folk music is the stuff we pass around to each other, that we sing around the fire, the songs that we let anyone join in on. Salvation South editor Chuck Reece explains the origins of one of the most famous folk songs in this week’s commentary.
In our public discourse these days, certain phrases are almost guaranteed to make people nervous. One of those is “white privilege.” In this week's commentary Salvation South Editor Chuck Reece explains how a long talk with Southern writer, David Joy, helped him look at the phrase differently.
Ask anyone the question, who taught you how to do that thing you love to do? The answer will often be something like, "There was this one teacher who really believed in me and didn’t give up on me." Today, Salvation South editor Chuck Reece wants to celebrate every school teacher listening, who never give up on their students.
Building a series of travel stories about the hometowns of Southern writers, Salvation South editor Chuck Reece discovered an essay by the novelist and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston in which she discusses the town of Eatonville, Florida where she grew up. He has more thoughts on Hurston and her connection to the historic town in this week's commentary.
Due to this year’s unusually warm winter, Georgia peach growers are facing one of the worst seasons in memory. In this week's commentary, Salvation South editor Chuck Reece has a few words of lament for this situation—and some thoughts about how to behave when you visit a fruit stand that has no peaches.
When Salvation South editor Chuck Reece was 19, he encountered what many people say is the greatest Southern novel ever written—William Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom! The book is a grueling test for even the most dedicated reader, but in this week’s commentary Chuck says it is still worth your time.
When Salvation South editor Chuck Reece first moved to New York City, he felt like he had something to prove. But he didn’t know exactly what that was. In this week’s commentary, he reports on what he learned from an audacious experiment.
Salvation South editor Chuck Reece often talks about how cultures from around the world have integrated into the culture of the American South. In this week's commentary, Chuck looks at a truly unique and harmonious marriage of bluegrass picking with the music of China direct from Nashville of course.