Tony Provencher
Original, Traditional, and
Good Time Music ♫ ♫ ♫

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

100 Years ago: The Christmas Truce of 1914

100 years ago at Christmastime, a most remarkable thing happened, as, inspired by the Christmas Spirit, soldiers in the trenches on both sides of the line met, unarmed, in No-Man's Land and exchanged carols, gifts, and a lively football (soccer) game, putting to a pause World War I in what became known as the Christmas Truce of 1914.

This amazing true story was, another World War and some decades later, made by John McCutcheon into a moving song that deserves to become a Christmas staple, especially on this 100th anniversary of the Christmas Truce of 1914.

Christmas in the Trenches
~ John McCutcheon

When I saw John McCutcheon perform this song some years ago, he introduced it, as he does here, with a chilling story of his experience playing it in Denmark to an audience including some German World War I Veterans. Please give a listen:


Friday, April 11, 2014

R. I. P. Jesse Winchester

I first became a fan of Jesse Winchester and his music during the time of his exile in the late sixties. It wasn't until the 2006 Boston Folk Festival that I finally had the pleasure of seeing and hearing him in person. On that occasion I was moved to write these words:
"We returned to our stakeout in the main field to hear Jesse Winchester, another favourite of mine. Jesse's laid back demeanor gave the impression, even though we were several thousand strong, sitting in a six or seven acre field, that we were invited for a little chat in his living room. The chat was filled with Jesse's beautiful voice, untarnished by time, singing some of the most accessible melodies ever written, delivering lovely lyrics that touched us all deep inside."
Jesse Winchester's Facebook Page posted today:
"Friends, our sweet Jesse died peacefully in his sleep this morning. Bless his loving heart."
Bless his loving heart, indeed -- one of the finest gentlemen the folk community has ever known -- God speed, Jesse.