We Are for Egypt
River to River Community Records
My vision for this album is to bridge Southern Illinois’ traditional musical heritage with its living arts culture while highlighting Southern Illinois’ fascinating “Egyptian” legacy. In an homage to the “song catching” of Appalachian ballads, I set aside half the album for traditional songs and the other
My vision for this album is to bridge Southern Illinois’ traditional musical heritage with its living arts culture while highlighting Southern Illinois’ fascinating “Egyptian” legacy. In an homage to the “song catching” of Appalachian ballads, I set aside half the album for traditional songs and the other half to newly-commissioned works. It was a firm requirement that all of the musicians were from Southern Illinois or were active in Southern Illinois’ music scene. I also hope this album serves as an example for historians and researchers to develop more outward-facing projects and incorporate community members in the knowledge-making process. Ultimately, a scholar’s work is not for themselves but for others. May listeners, present and future, find inspiration in these songs and the rich, artistic traditions of Egypt, Illinois.
My work on this album is dedicated to the memories of my Grandpa,JohnT. Davidson (1928-2003), dulcimer-player extraordinaire and history buff, and my landsman, Steven H. Crane (1980-2020),
saxophonist, bass clarinetist, and repository
of Egyptian Illinois lore.
I am grateful for the unwavering support of Joseph Davidson and Carolyn Davidson as well as my family, friends, and supportive colleagues.This album would not have been made without the dedication, hard work, creativity, expansive talent, and extensive experience of my Producer, Jenny Pape, and the musicians who contributed to this album.
Producer’s Note: Jenny Pape
When Stacy contacted me, I knew the hardest part of my job was going to be narrowing the scope of this project to only a handful of songwriters and performers in this area. Not the worst problem to have, I admit.We’re fortunate to have a rich, musical history in Southern Illinois, with a community that celebrates live music and its songwriters.This album, I believe, shows that to be true. A lot of research went into selecting the traditional songs, and I found the SIU Press to be a great resource of local folklore, oral traditions, regional specific songs, and public domain works.When selecting songwriters and thinking of the type of sound for the album, I wanted to keep with the American roots music found within this region and include: blues, folk, Americana, bluegrass/string band music, and even a blend of Latin and country music. I was continuously impressed by what the artists brought to the table throughout the entire process of writing, arranging and performing. This project has been a blast! It’s been a journey, and I can’t say enough good things about it, so I’ll stop trying.
I’d like to dedicate this album to my son, Thelonious Arthur Pape, with a smile sweeter than a Cobden peach.
Thank you to my supportive husband, Alex Pape, my creative and technical sounding boards, Alex Jockusch and Josh Morrison, and all of the incredibly talented songwriters and musicians. A heartfelt thank you to our Executive Producer, Stacy Davidson, the reason any of this happened— we are so grateful for you.