The Death Whisperer Series

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Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Indigo Girls and Saint-Amant Grangeneuve

Although I was a professional bassist when I was younger, I took up the acoustic guitar because playing the bass by myself was boring. I used take my Martin D-35 and play regularly at a particular coffee house in college. So, although I’m a jazz/blues musician by training, I have always loved the folk scene.

Amy Ray and Emily Saliers make up what I consider to be one of the premier duos to ever hit the music scene—the Indigo Girls. The only other due that comes close to their melodies, harmonies, and lyrical beauty is Simon and Garfunkel. They first met at Laurel Ridge Elementary School near Decatur, Georgia. They didn’t become friends until high school because Emily was a year older than Amy. While attending Shamrock High School, they recognized their musical love and started performing together, first as “The B-Band” then as “Saliers and Ray.”

After graduating, they went their separate ways, Saliers to Tulane University and Ray to Vanderbilt. Both became homesick and returned to Georgia where they attended Emory University and reunited as a musical duo. They needed a name and began going through the dictionary looking for words that struck them. Indigo was the winner and they began performing publically under the name Indigo Girls.

Around 1988, the duo seemed to fit into the category of “the next big thing,” following the success of artists like Tracy Chapman and Suzanne Vega. As a result, Epic Records signed them to their first major recording contract. Their first release, “Indigo Girls” contains one of my all time favorites, “Closer to Fine.” The album won a Grammy award for best folk recording.

While their guitar and vocal harmonies are captivating, don’t miss the poetry of their lyrics starting with “Closer to Fine.” Hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Opened a bottle of one of my favorite wines recently, which is very appropriate since the Indigo girls are one of my favorite folk groups. The 2009 Saint-Amant Grangeneuve Beaumes-du-Venise is a Southern Rhone crafted from 60% Grenache, 35% Syrah, and 5% Viognier. In the glass it’s dark purple with aromas of red raspberries and spice. Its tastes like a bowl full of raspberries and cherries with a bit of pepper due to the Syrah. At $17.00, it also a bargain. Get your local wine shop to order a case and enjoy it with the music of the Indigo Girls.


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