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From August 17, 2006...
You've heard the old saying, a picture's worth a thousand words... and it's certainly true with the civil rights movement. Meet one woman who explains why, in the 1960s, she captured on film black Alabama farmers forced from their homes -- her photos are part of a new visitor center commemorating the Selma-to-Montgomery voting rights march. Plus, ever wonder what makes an artist tick? We explore the depths - and the derivation - of creativity in certain artisans, starting this week with Birmingham sculptor Frank Flemming. Later, we'll hear the old school soul of 78-year old Roscoe Robinson...Robinson and others are featured on a new CD being released this weekend. I'm Greg Bass and this is Tapestry.
This summer, a new National Park Service visitor center is opening in Lowndes County, a place that commemorates the 1965 voting rights march between Selma and Montgomery. But the center also pays tribute to the black farmers and sharecroppers who were forced out of their homes for registering to vote after the historic march. Makeshift Tent Cities as they were called sprung up in several places across the South. And while the history of those refuges is not well known, there are those who remember them - and documented their plight - quite vividly. Reporter Kezia Simister introduces us to a woman who, in 1966, packed and her camera and headed South.
Some of Reading's civil rights movement photographs have been featured at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC and at the Gallery for Fine Photography in New Orleans. There's more inside the Tapestry section at WBHM.ORG. By the way, on the weekend of September 2, The Lowndes County Friends of the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail will honor those families displaced.
Question: why are some people more creative than others? Is it parental influence? Something in the gene pool? Divine intervention? It's an ongoing debate. But there are those who believe it can't and shouldn't be explained at all--simply experienced and enjoyed. So, we've come up with an occasional series we're calling "The Nature of Creativity" which explores the influences of local artists. What makes them tick? Where do they get their ideas? How have they developed the "gift" of seeing things in a completely different light than most of us? Is it nature, nurture, or a strange brew of both? Some answers - maybe - from reporter Les Lovoy, who highlights the work - and artistic mind - of Birmingham's Frank Flemming.
Our occasional series, "The Nature of Creativity" will be featured, uh, occasionally, on Tapestry; By the way, there's more about Frank Flemming and his work at our website, WBHM.ORG.
To hear the audio portion of the Community Calendar from Tapestry, click here.
Want to know more? Activeculture.info is a one-stop source for finding out what's going on in the Birmingham metro area.
And if that weren't enough for you, this weekend, the UAB Department of Communication Studies presents: Media Now: Truth or Deception; a new look at integrity, bias and persuasion. The conference runs from 9 am 'til 4 pm at the Hulsey Recital Hall on the UAB campus.
In music, there's soul...and there's old school soul. Roscoe Robinson's soulful, six-decade journey has taken him from pulpit to juke joint to major city club. Known as the sighted member of the Blind Boys Alabama - Robinson mixes the sweet sound of rhythm with the depth perception of blues. Born in Arkansas, music runs deep in Robinson's family, mainly gospel and sacred sounds. But he made the secular switch quite a few times - with the likes of Sam Cooke and Buddy Guy - and recorded some tracks in Birmingham. We managed to blow off thirty years of dust and cobwebs to let you hear this and other songs. "Two Heart Accident" was recorded more than 30 years ago at Sound of Birmingham studios. (AUDIO MONTAGE)
That's Roscoe Robinson with "Let Me Be Myself" - recorded more than three decades ago in Birmingham. It's one of many tracks - from Robinson and others - being released on a new CD this weekend called "The Birmingham Sound - the Soul of Neal Hemphill, Volume One." Some of the artists - including Roscoe Robinson - perform Saturday night at BottleTree on Birmingham's Southside, as part of a CD release party. You can download the songs you just heard inside the Tapestry section at WBHM.ORG.
That's Tapestry for this week, guest produced by Steve Chiotakis. Our executive producers are Tanya Ott and Michael Krall. Thanks to Hunter Bell, as always, for waxing musically. Additional reporting this week by Kezia Simister and Les Lovoy. And, a shout out to another Roscoe - not the one you're hearing, but our very own Francesca Rosko - for the community calendar. I'm Greg Bass and we'll see you next week.