I awoke to the sad news this morning that the jewel of these mountains had died. Her music helped shaped me a little bit:
Country music legend Hazel Dickens, who grew up in poverty in Mercer County and sang her hard-hitting songs about working people, coal mining and West Virginia all over the world, died in her sleep Thursday night at age 75.
“She was a treasure, a musical pioneer in bluegrass music, a gifted songwriter, an activist and a very wise woman who saw the truth in things and spoke it freely,” Goldenseal magazine editor and musician John Lilly said Friday. “She sang and wrote about mining issues and mine safety issues and women’s issues in general, and spoke up in her songs and conversation for people who needed a voice.”
I’ve been to that grave in the above video…