I'm betting that a goodly portion of Baby Boomers can name-that-tune from the subtitle, and will easily recall a panoramic televised view of teenagers on a hilltop, singing of apple trees and honey bees while holding bottles of Coca-Cola labeled in various languages in suggestion that world peace is attainable through the mere purchase of a soft drink. "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony)" is rated as one of the world's most influential advertisements, and is an oddity in that its ad-turned-into-hit-song approach is opposite the customary order in which a "pop"ular song becomes a vehicle for the sale of a product, which in turn feeds the pocket of a clever songwriter.
So, what does this icon of crass commercialism have to do with "The Celtalachian Harmonies of Thistle Dew," or of one Dew Drop's pilgrimage to the small Alabama town that birthed the Voting Rights Act of 1965, or of anything of importance, for that matter? Just this: it is my belief that all forms of harmony are intrinsically positive, their origins or intentions notwithstanding, and the Jubilee observance of the 1965 Selma-to-Montgomery March was graphic confirmation of such.
I came to Selma in the best of company; my dear friend (and Dew Drop-In) Sam Jones was born and raised there. As a pre-teen, she was strictly forbidden to go downtown while history was being made in her hometown, and yet her entire adult life has been radically impacted by half-century removed events.
Her perspective and expectations of our pilgrimage were, therefore, much different from mine, but we both came home with the same surprising impression--that of overwhelming goodwill and friendliness from each and every person amongst the thousands (news reports range from 40-to-80 thousand) we encountered. In spite of predictions of discord amongst the vast array of organizations represented--civil rights, labor unions, churches, youth groups, planned parenthood, crime prevention, arts councils, and (inevitably) commercial enterprises--as well as the various causes each promoted, there was an over-all feeling of hope for social justice and peace through the empowerment of community. In short, there was harmony.
As a vocal trio, Thistle Dew is likewise dedicated to blending our voices together in just such a harmonic way that those listening will somehow be lifted above whatever mundane circumstances they encounter to a place of hope, abundance, and infinite possibilities, through "A song of peace that echoes on and never fades away..."
For Sam Jones' perspective of the Selma pilgrimage, please click the link below.
~rhodyjane - March 14, 2015
March 2015 Pilgrimage to Selma, Alabama
(In Perfect Harmony)