Heritage Music

Just A Touch Of The Past

Chevy Impala

Seems my mind is always wondering back to days of old, seems I’m always longing for a touch of the past. This summer I’ve been working for a dear lady who lives down a long winding road. A road I traveled often in childhood, riding in the backseat of Pap’s big white Impala or green Ford LTD. Back in those days I had nothing to do but stare out the window as we wound our way through the curves to a little country church or a house along the way.

For many years my daily travels have seldom led me through those parts, until this summer. Each Friday I feel as though I’m driving back in time. My history lives along the road:

~My Mamaw grew up along the road. She walked it with her sisters and sadly her father was shot and killed along the road too.

~There’s a little white church where I spent homecoming Sundays with lots of food and lots of people. Now the church sits deserted. Silently keeping watch over those who lie near by like Mamaw and Papaw under the oak tree.

~A deserted old brick school building, Ogden, where Pap spent part of his elementary school years.

~The river where two of my cousins where baptized on the same day.

~The sweetest Aunt Ina who lived in the big house that was divided in two to share with her daughter and son-n-law.

~Happy happy days and nights spent at my best friend Tracy’s. I can’t even remember not knowing her. Now she lives far away in the big mountains of Montana.

~I even have memories from the Blind Pig on the road: Sylvia one of my first Mountain Folk Interviews.

Some Fridays as I drive it seems I hear those voices from the past shouting at me, calling me to come back and be part of the days that are gone. Calling me back to the days of riding in the backseat with Steve and Paul.

For this week’s Pickin’ & Grinnin’ In The Kitchen Spot-A Touch Of The Past. I hope you’ll give it a listen and I know you’ll be glad you did.

Hope you liked the song.


You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    Chuck Howell
    August 6, 2018 at 10:21 pm

    “Somehow in my Heart, I know that Those Were Better Times
    When the Railroad Hauled Timber on the Cheat Mountain Line
    In the Hills of West Virginia, Not so long ago
    Feel the Heat of the Old Steam Engine
    Hear that Skidder Whistle Blow”

    • Reply
      Chuck Howell
      August 7, 2018 at 7:28 am

      “There’s an Old Sawmill Town on that Greenbriar River’s Shore
      Wooden Sidewalks & Houses, A Big Old Company Store
      Where Hard Working Families Spent the Little Pay they Made
      Big Owners making Profit while little Children Played

      Oh the Years have gone by since I left my Mountain Home
      I Often Sit & Wonder why I ever Had to Roam
      For Somehow in my Heart, I know that those were Better Times
      When the Railroad Hauled Timber on that Cheat Mountain Line

  • Reply
    fishing guy
    August 9, 2009 at 7:27 am

    Tipper: That was a neat song and the the memories were great.

  • Reply
    David Templeton
    August 8, 2009 at 10:39 pm

    Critics and teachers tell us how we should write and we’ve all seen over-rehearsed plays and programs, constructed precisely according to all the right norms and standards. And, there is an emptiness in academically correct works, a superficiality.
    When a work, especially a written work, evokes the feeling and the heart-rendering sympathy, the sharing of emotion that brings us to feel we are being spoken to personally, that is when a work is good beyond any other conception.
    This writing here, A Touch of the Past, is a treasure we can all read again and again and feel our own personal belonging to its story.
    Your tender essay finds you at your best, yet at the very same unadorned beauty seen in all of your work. Thank you for writing it and God bless you and all in your fold.

  • Reply
    August 8, 2009 at 8:20 am

    I love your posts as they make me think of the times when I would visit my grandparents here in Kentucky during the summers of my childhood. Riding down country roads in the backseat of one of those gigantic cars! Buying candy from the country store and ice cold Ski soft drinks in the bottle. Wonderful memories.

  • Reply
    August 8, 2009 at 7:14 am

    I enjoyed this journey along the old roads with you. Sometimes it feels sad ans strange to see old places of warmth and love shut. Sometimes it’s just good to be there. I like to drive to my gram’s grave, which is a good 90 minutes from here and to see her home, though it’s vinyl sided now and looking very small.Still, it’s good to touch those memories.
    Your post also reminded me of the big ol’ cars of that time. How we used to slide around the back seat!

  • Reply
    Nancy M.
    August 8, 2009 at 2:31 am

    That is a wonderful song! I find that I have been longing for older days too. Some things would be wonderful to have back. But, unfortunately a lot of those special folks have gone on up to heaven and we won’t see them for a while.

  • Reply
    August 8, 2009 at 1:16 am

    Yes, I do. I think it’s because those times were sweet and less stressed times, unlike today. Things seemed more simple and people were easier to please.Just loved reading your memories! Blessings,Kathleen

  • Reply
    Brenda Kay Ledford
    August 7, 2009 at 3:32 pm

    My mother grew up at Brasstown, attended the Ogden School. I drove her down old 64 a few months ago. It was so sad seeing the old brick school closed, grown up, and deserted. Mama has many memories attending that little country school. She grew up on the Trout Cove, helped grow a garden there, and much of her past in interwoven in this “neck of the woods”. I enjoyed this posting. I know how you feel concerning the past.

  • Reply
    petra michelle
    August 7, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    Can so relate, Tipper! There are roads which are so much more rich in memories than others. Whenever my brothers and sisters gather around, we can’t help but bring up those carefree days. The need to recall our fondest memories is so important in days of worry or concerns!
    A heartfelt and warm post, Tipper! Thank you! :))
    p.s. I truly got a kick when Paul burst out laughing when he missed his cue! You all are so real!

  • Reply
    August 7, 2009 at 10:39 am

    All the time! I love this post, Tipper. You described exactly my feelings when I go back home. So many memories and many of them so sweet. There’s something that just pulls us to drive down those country roads of our past, whether we do it physically or just in our memories.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 11:34 pm

    Loved your trip down memory lane! The church looks so much like the little church that we attend back here on these rock and dirt mountain roads.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 11:30 pm

    Though we cannot bring it back, I am always longing for a touch of the past. We moved from the hollow when I was 19. It was a wonderful life living among all my aunts, uncles and cousins. Now we are all scattered and the hollow is not what it used to be. We still visit my sister who lives there and I gaze upon all the changes as we travel up the road, but I will never forget my fond memories of yesterdays.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    Oh I really like this post. I always thought I would be a wanderer, living in many different places, but I spent the first twenty-one years in the same house (save for a college year away) and now I live twenty miles away and have for the last twenty-five years. Those five years in between were not more than ten miles from my original home. Living that close all those years I am constantly drawn back to the past by sights, sounds and fragrances. And now because we have met many people who intimately know the history of where we live I am collecting other people’s pasts too.
    It is a good place to draw from.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 9:59 pm

    You know I loved the video and song. One day, many years from now, you’ll be wishing to be sitting there doing this same thing. I know I miss playing guitar and singing with my Dad.
    I do long to go visit my hometown, 3 states away. I was hoping for a visit this summer. Maybe next year.
    Does your friend ever get to come back home and visit?

  • Reply
    Dennis Price
    August 6, 2009 at 9:46 pm

    I am most at home in the past. I use the things of the present out of desperation, but I do like the pace and tenor of life we enjoyed in a less informed time when we weren’t bombarded with constant clap-trap from electronic media. Sure enjoyed the picking in the kitchen segment although I think it may have been in the den. I also thought I saw you smile when Paul skipped a beat after his run up into the second verse. Best to all. Pappy

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    I loved piling in the car on a Sunday afternoon and going on a drive. Sometimes my Grandaddy and my Daddy would take us to see my Great Aunt Bo and Great Aunt Grace up on the mountain. They had an old blind goose we used to chase around. Never could catch him!! Aunt Bo used to put bandaids on the bottom of her shoes to keep them from slipping. She always had us something sweet and a cool drink that we would take outside and sit on the stoop. Maybe a slice of pound cake or some cookies. Sweet memories.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 5:33 pm

    Sunday drives after Church with Mom and Dad. When we got home it was eggs and bacon for brunch, reading the large Sunday paper. Car vacations were wonderful for me-Dad driving, Mom trying to read the maps and looking for Best Westerns at the end of the day. The stops at tourist traps where I was allowed to buy $1.00 grab bags. We visited most of the Western U.S. Week long vacations-just me-with Aunt and Uncle at their cabin with an outhouse. Grandma making breakfast on the old woodstove, fishing with Uncle. Night time prayers and Bible reading lead by Uncle. Getting tucked in by Grandma and Aunty. Now that property has turned into a ritzy subdivision with many fancy homes.

  • Reply
    Dee from Tennessee
    August 6, 2009 at 4:48 pm

    I suspect that a “touch of the past” would do us all some good.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 1:42 pm

    Tipper is that you playing in this video?

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 1:05 pm

    I love to ride roads on Sunday afternoons. This is a wonderful post.
    We have a church that was abandoned near our house, but a new congregation has bought the property and started to restore (save) the building.

  • Reply
    Sallie Covolo
    August 6, 2009 at 12:36 pm

    I love revisiting the past, and I love it that the girls from your generation also love revisiting it. I remember when I found the church my mother had attended as a child in North Buncombe near Barnardsville. It had not been remodeled yet. I felt the tears come to my eyes as I stood in this church where so many of my ancestors are buried in the grave yard. I could just see my mother sitting in the church. Her grandfather was the pastor and maybe the founder. She used to talk about Morgan Hill Missionary Baptist Church and I thought it was a mythical place but when visiting WNC some years back, my cousin said, “Oh no” it is a real place. So we drove up there. It was a sweet memory, but sad to see how so many of the graves have deteriorated. Thanks for this post Tipper.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 11:27 am

    Your posts always seem to being back a little piece of the old days for me and I truly like that.
    Life seemed do much easier back then, now there is always to much hussle and bustle.

  • Reply
    Brenda S 'Okie in Colorado'
    August 6, 2009 at 11:22 am

    You continue to bring back all my wonderful memories of my childhood and loved ones. Aren’t we blessed with such simple loving memories?

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 10:46 am

    Tipper, I feel the same way. I don’t live near the “highway” where I was raised. I’m about 65 miles or so from it. When I do get back to the small town, it is so changed from the 50’s and 60’s. I drive past my childhood home. Unfortunatly, the many owners after my family did not take pride in that wonderful house that daddy built with his own two hands for us. I was only 9 months old when we moved in to “the house on the highway” from a tiny farm. It was 1951, and the effects of the depression were slowly lifting. Dad had a job as a farm foreman at a private college that raised food to feed its students, and life was good. When I was 18, we moved to the big city. Oh, how I cried! But, daddy said that he had to make a living, and the college had stopped farming. So, we moved. I got my first job, and then came real life 101! All of my school friends from the old hometown have moved, too. They are scattered around the world. I long for the good old days. Yet, I read something the other day that I’ve tried to keep in mind. “Don’t let the past make you forget the present.” Somedays, I REALLY have to make an effort to do that!

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 9:58 am

    Thank U again for your wonderful post.This one takes me back to childhood & riding all bunched up in Daddy’s old car (they had less room in those days)& loved to sit bent over or lying on the part that divided the back seat from the back glass.What a treat to get it & watch the world go by.Thanks to U & Andy Griffith for keeping me grounded in my raising.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 9:17 am

    Very good post, makes me long for yesteryear. It reminds me of those trips with a car full of kids, windows rolled down, everyone sticky from the humidity and we should have all jsut been miserable but I can’t remember ever being happier.
    You are quite poetic, “My history lives along the road.” Excellent!

  • Reply
    August 6, 2009 at 9:14 am

    Oh, I know that feeling all too well. I keep a plaque by the door that reads:
    “Do not loose heart, we were made for these times”
    Clarissa Pinkola Estes

  • Leave a Reply