A song of Thanksgiving

Published 12:12am Saturday, November 23, 2013

As we approach Thanksgiving, among many things, there’s one thing I am very grateful for: music. Music is the one thing that can uplift me at any time. It is my favorite way to express myself – sometimes the only way to release pent-up emotion.

If you’re a musician/singer/songwriter, you know what I’m talking about. If you sing your heart out in your car to George Jones or Whitney Houston, you also know what I’m talking about. I’m not judging. I’m that person who tries to reach all the high notes in “I Will Always Love You” at the red light.

There’s something about creating music, releasing melodies from our lips, that does the heart good, whether the sounds be “joyful” or on key.

I am especially thankful for the musical talent God has given my sister, Kallie, and me. He has gifted us both with the ability to sing and create harmonies together – something that can only be God-given. The two of us make up a country/bluegrass duo called Clementine.

We took a needed break for a while after starting our group when I came home from graduate school. But now, we are getting back in the swing of things. Saturday, we were the entertainment at the Mississippi Farmer’s Market in Jackson, and we have some more performances coming up. Our sound is influenced by Alison Krauss, old George himself, Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline and The Judds.

We try to keep to that old country/bluegrass sound, but Daddy has named our original sound, Mississippi music.

We sing a lot about the south and Jesus’ saving grace. I am thankful to live in Mississippi. I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.

Kallie and I have been practicing a lot more lately, and I fear our poor guitar player is just up the creek without a paddle with us two girls. We’ll argue and argue about how something should sound and he’ll just sit there like a deer in headlights.

He’s a good boy. He’s learning, though, that Kallie and I get over things quickly. We’ll be at each other’s throats one minute, and then getting along and laughing the next. It’s Daddy’s fault for having two girls as hard-headed as him.

Daddy writes a lot of our lyrics, and I write some lyrics and the music. My husband is probably our best promoter. I am blessed to have such a wonderful, supportive husband. I think he’d support me if I wanted to join the circus. He’d buy me the brightest leotard and set up a tightrope in the backyard. Although, I think he’s much happier I’m doing something I’m good at.

Combining a tightrope and me would result in a trip to the ER. I can’t even walk in our house without tripping or bumping into something every day. Jacob didn’t believe how clumsy I am until we got married, and he constantly hears, “Ow!” I’m a walking bruise.

Kallie and I have great supporters in our family. On this Thanksgiving week, I am thankful for Clementine and for my MoMo’s turkey and dressing. Each year, I tell myself I won’t make myself sick on buttered rolls. That self-restraint has not happened yet.

I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, surrounded by the people you love and the love of our Father. Turn on some music and enjoy the smells of turkey and the groans of those who have over-indulged.

You may write to Jessica Boyd-Smith by emailing jessimarie2010@yahoo.com.