COVID-19 Music

Ginseng Sullivan

living room with instrument cases on floor

The girls and I have been playing music a lot since we’ve been at home more than usual. We’ve learned a couple of new songs, one of which is “Ginseng Sullivan” written by Norman Blake.

A couple of weeks back The Pressley Girls were playing in Brasstown and family friend Bob Dalsemer was there. Once he heard the girls do the song “Home from the Forest” he said “If you’re going to do Tony Rice covers you should learn “Ginseng Sullivan.”

The girls and I are are very familiar with Tony Rice’s version of Blake’s song so we gave it our best try.

I hope you enjoyed the song. I think it would have been better with Paul’s picking, but he’s still going to work everyday and then there’s the whole social distancing thing.

The song tells a great story. I’m all the time talking about folks who long for their home in Appalachia, so the song is a nice reminder that for other people home means a totally different place.


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  • Reply
    Angelyn McLain
    December 12, 2021 at 9:29 am

    Great song! My maiden name is Sullivan !

  • Reply
    April 5, 2020 at 5:20 pm

    What a catchy tune, , y’all did great ,I was tappin my foot right along with ya. Decided to Google the lyrics to read them through [email protected] @ where down at the finish was a video of Norman Blake telling a bit about the man the song was about, and what the word Batelle was referring to……sorry though that he never made it to His Delta….I’d never heard the song so it was neat to learn about and hear y’all sing it.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2020 at 3:08 pm

    It’s so wonderful to see such joy in such trying times! I am so thankful you all keep making music for all of us to enjoy while “locked” inside our homes! I don’t know how I’ve kept from hearing this Tony Rice song – I thought I’d heard all of his songs, but this is my first time hearing it. I love the chord runs, and of course, you all did a beautiful, amazing job, as always! Sending much love and many hugs your way today! 🙂

  • Reply
    Sue Simmons
    April 5, 2020 at 1:30 pm

    Tipper do you have a picture of ginseng ? I don’t know what it looks like, if you do would you please post it. Thanks a lot

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    April 5, 2020 at 10:50 am

    Good job, girls. You sing now like the songs are a part you…you don’t sing/play the song, you are the song for the time you are with it! It would not exist without you.

  • Reply
    Ed Karshner
    April 5, 2020 at 10:41 am

    I gave this a listen last night and again this morning. As always, I enjoy hearing their music.

    We had all kinds of trips planned home for the Spring and summer. Hoping this stay at home stuff is lifted soon!

    In the meantime, stay safe!

  • Reply
    April 5, 2020 at 9:43 am

    Great job! Never heard that song but it is catchy and for some reason made me think of another song that had in it MS Delta Day that I think Charlie Pride sang. Anyway the girls did a great job playing and singing.

    Home is where the heart is and for some reason “Home” was where ever my parents were. I grew up in Illinois and I would always say I’m going home when I was going back there, but when my parents retired and moved back to MS, I would say I’m going home when I went to visit them there. I must say though there is a distinct sweet fragrance to the ground in NE MS and the sandy bottom of the little meandering creeks are crystal clear and shimmer like diamonds. God sure created some awesome scenery in our 50 states.

  • Reply
    gayle larson
    April 5, 2020 at 8:42 am

    Glad to know you are all ok.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    April 5, 2020 at 8:25 am

    That is a catchy tune, the kind that sticks in your head. And it certainly is a long way in more than miles from the Mississippi Delta to the north Georgia mountains. Life can take us on those kinds of trips and make us wonder if we ever can get back home again.

    The other day I tried an experiment that is related to the idea of getting back home. I asked my wife two questions. The first was, “If someone asked you where you were from, what would you say?” She said, ” Something like ‘from Georgia now but Kentucky originally.’ ” Next I asked her what she would say if someone just asked her, “Are you a Georgian?” Her answer was that, like the first question, it would not be an unqualified ” yes”. My own answers would be much the same. What I was after was understanding where we think of as “home”. I don’t want to disappoint my Georgia friends, some of whom are also BP&A readers, but I reckon the meaning of that word got made somewhere else long ago and hasn’t gotten changed by living in Georgia 37 years.

  • Reply
    Bob Dalsemer
    April 5, 2020 at 8:13 am


  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    April 5, 2020 at 8:12 am

    According to my reckonin’, a fellow would be a whole lot better of in the hills where clear waters flow a-huntin’ sang and a-catchin’ trout than in the mosquito-laden, muddy waters of the Mississippi delta where only a catfish would feel comfortable.
    I really enjoyed the song, which is new to me.
    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    aw griff
    April 5, 2020 at 7:58 am

    Good job young Ladies!! Love that fiddle. Tell you what I’ll do. I’ll trade my 2 fiddles for yours in a blind swap. Think it over, you don’t have to decide today. Hee Hee

    I read over what I posted yesterday and my friend said, ” I’m so DUMB I buy my mail.”” Not POOR.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2020 at 5:09 am

    Good job. I like it.

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