The incredible Odetta died earlier today in New York. Folk and gospel singer, actress, rights activist and voice of an age – another one of the immortals from my youth has gone. I only saw her live as an actress – she acted one summer at the Stratford Festival – never in concert but I owned at least four of her albums when I was a teenager. On one she sang a song called “Why and why and why” – a simple dialogue between a sleepy child and a weary but caring mother. I can still hear the last line as the child asks one more “why” question before falling asleep: Because I don’t know the answer. I wish I could hear the love she put into that phrase just one more time.
03 dicembre – San Francesco Saverio