Making Music on the Front Porch


| 8/29/2012 8:31:10 AM


Tags: Music, Front Porch, Michael Johnathon, folk music, songs, Pete Seeger, banjo, guitar, log cabin, Michael Johnathon,

MichaelJohnathon CabinIt’s a melodic, early morning on the front porch of my log cabin here in Kentucky. The air gently resonates with a magical, peaceful symphony of sounds ... sunrise is nature’s musical awakening, an earth-song that starts the day. 

Henry David Thoreau, my favorite writer, said it best,  

“The morning is the awakening hour ... Poetry and art, and the fairest and most memorable of the actions of men, date from such an hour. All poets emit their music at sunrise. To him whose elastic and vigorous thought keeps pace with the sun, the day is a perpetual morning.” 

And so, in this calm and tranquil setting, I sit in a wicker rocking chair on my grand front porch with my cup of cinnamon coffee and begin scribbling thoughts in this old ledger. The irony of writing for MOTHER EARTH NEWS is not lost on me. 

I’ve been a fan of Mother Earth News since I was a kid growing up along the Hudson River in upstate New York. I was the one who would plant and then harvest the big family garden. My uncle subscribed to Mother Earth News as a gardening gift for me. It was through these pages the concept of how to merge the earth, nature, community and home with music began to form, albeit in the most clumsy way possible. 

As a young teenager I was introduced to the partnership of folk music and community by my neighbor. He was a pleasant fellow, an odd older guy who claimed to be a musician but played the banjo. To a young rock’n’roller like me that was an odd and strange contradiction. Real musicians wouldn’t be caught dead playing a banjo, after all. Plus the guy was kinda weird. Anytime there was a big storm in the area he would show up at the school yard with an ax so he could help chop up the fallen trees and branches. 

michael johnathon
9/14/2012 8:26:42 PM

Samantha, so good to hear from you. It's been a while since we spent those evening in Pipestem! mj


ada robbins
9/1/2012 6:11:07 PM

Refreshingly delightful article and life story of a musician with a mission for using music to bring about positive changes for the earth and human kind. Keep writing, keep playing & Keep on the Sunny Side!


tony 2581
8/30/2012 4:13:46 AM

Great article, Michael. Thanks for the great music you have shared with all of us in Kentucky!


sue peterson blyth
8/30/2012 2:41:45 AM

Planning on playing a little Seeger and Guthrie this weekend. Down home music that very much speaks to my heart. Tues night is music night at our little intentional community. It's a rare night that we don't play at least one Seeger song.


michael bates
8/30/2012 1:52:14 AM

Nice work Michael! Kudos!


samantha fixter amey
8/30/2012 1:37:05 AM

Well Michael----you have certainly arrived!!! Mother Earth News indeed!! Congrats!!! Thinking of you & your music & those campfires at Don West's farm fondly.Love & peace to you, brother.





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