Appalachia Music

Spider Web Canyon


Brasstown, NC

I’ve been thinking a lot about Brasstown over the last few weeks. You could probably tell from my recent writings. From Paradise to Brasstown in March of 1929 I’ve published more than a few posts about the area.

I couldn’t really tell you why I’ve been studying on Brasstown as I go about my day, but I have.

I suppose it’s a mixture of being grateful to live here and wondering if everyone feels the same way about where they live.

The other night we had the great honor of playing a few songs with our friend David Kaynor at his JCCFS Friday Night Concert. I think we enjoyed ourselves more than the crowd did and the highlight of the evening happened when we ended the concert by playing the song Chitter composed in memory of Pap “Spider Web Canyon.”


I hope you enjoyed the peek into the concert. If you’d like to hear the Vermont Fiddle Orchestra play the tune go here.

To sum up my recent thoughts about where I live I’ll quote L.C. Chastain who was my very first Mountain Folk interview. When I asked L.C. what he thought about our area of Appalachia he said “Well I’ll tell you what, if I didn’t already live here I’d be getting here as fast as I could.”


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  • Reply
    March 26, 2018 at 5:49 am

    My very first thought was, Wow, this would be some really good back ground music for a ” Hallmark special” and then after I finished watching I read where someone had already mentioned it.

  • Reply
    Bob Dalsemer
    March 25, 2018 at 5:35 pm

    Beautiful! ! Sorry missed the concert!

  • Reply
    Ron Banks
    March 25, 2018 at 3:03 pm

    Beautiful tune that rings of Appalachia.
    It reminds me of something you would hear in a Ken Burns documentary of the South and the Cival War era. Well done y’all!!

  • Reply
    Janis Sullivan
    March 25, 2018 at 3:03 pm

    Oh, Tipper, I think you just have to pop with pride sometimes about your wonderful young ladies, your whole family.

  • Reply
    March 25, 2018 at 2:20 pm

    Last night I received a blessing. It was at Paul’s School in Martin’s Creek Community Building. I found a comfortable place to sit and before long Miss Cindy and Tipper was sitting in the same row, talking with me. My Doctor, Dr. Eichenbaun was seated beside Tipper, while another group sung many heart-felt songs. They were from Georgia, somewhere, but they were Good too.

    When it was time for the Pressley Girls and most of the Wilson Family’s turn, they played and sung a lot of our Favorites. Then Katie (Chitter) squeezed in between Paul and Chatter, saying she wanted some spotlight too. ha But her and Paul was getting ready to sing “If I could Hear My Mother Pray Again.” That was a Big Hit and I remembered my Preacher brother, John, learning to play that song on the Piano. He’d put in the little extras, like Paul does on the Guitar, and make those Cold Chills run up and down your Spine. I’m just Glad I was there! …Ken

  • Reply
    Pamela Danner
    March 25, 2018 at 1:47 pm

    Oh Tipper, this is such a beautiful melodic tune! It sounds like it should be music for a movie on Hallmark. Chitter did a wonderful job of composing Spider Web Canyon! You all are so very talented!

  • Reply
    betty stephenson
    March 25, 2018 at 1:28 pm

    beautiful music really loved it i have lived in christchurch new zealand for most of my 71 years and despite losing a lot of our beautiful city and a few of our people in those horrible earthquakes 7 years ago its still home and always willbe have a great week and stay well everyone

  • Reply
    March 25, 2018 at 1:07 pm

    I’m so thankful to hear this tune, so thankful for the meaning, so thankful for the sense of place.

  • Reply
    Don Casada
    March 25, 2018 at 12:31 pm

    Tipper, I don’t know how I missed the original posting of the song with the photo sequence of Pap (my far better half obviously didn’t since she commented), but these two postings are some of your finest work. Katie’s composition is a lovely tribute to a truly great man.

    I have to wonder if part of the “Spider Web Canyon” naming was Katie recalling him teasing her about the spider that, as she said, “charged” her. I can still see the twinkle in his eye as he told that story, sitting at your kitchen table. He did it in a way that was simultaneously really funny but also revealed his love for and pride in Katie.

  • Reply
    Ed Karshner
    March 25, 2018 at 11:36 am

    This is probably my favorite Pressley Girls song. I like both versions but I’m partial to the girls playing.

    Chitter did a great job capturing the spirit of the genre. That it is so personal comes through, too. What a wonderful and talented family.

  • Reply
    Sherry Whitaker
    March 25, 2018 at 10:58 am

    Thank You for this Sunday morning melody and love that pours out of your mountains to me. I do long to get there again and stay.

  • Reply
    Wayne G. Barber
    March 25, 2018 at 9:54 am

    Thank You, for sharing the story and great music, Wayne

  • Reply
    harry adams
    March 25, 2018 at 9:50 am

    As soon as I started listening, it reminded me of Shenandoah which I heard recently as an instrumental. Songs like this bring a picture of serenity in the mountain valleys to mind. Growing up and living in mid SC we would visit the mountains in the fall. I went to Clemson also in view of the Blue Ridge. We always said that if we had to move back south, it would be somewhere in the mountain tri-state area.
    I went to Google earth to look up Brasstown. If you have never looked at google earth you are missing the ability to travel the world from your desk.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    March 25, 2018 at 9:22 am

    I’m so glad for you and yours that you love where you live. I got uprooted many years ago and remain shallow-rooted still. Contentment is a rare thing for us humans and to be treasured wherever it can be found.

    The music seems to me to be saying something I just can’t quite interpret. The words are just beyond the edge of my knowing. And I reckon any such message would be different for each person. That’s the way instrumental music works I guess.

    There must be a story behind that title?

  • Reply
    Ann Appplegarth
    March 25, 2018 at 8:15 am

    Beautiful! That soft, sweet, plaintive melody is a perfect tribute to a greatly beloved grandfather. And, just now, it is a lovely beginning for my Sunday. Thank you, Chitter.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    March 25, 2018 at 7:59 am

    That’s beautiful, Tip. Katie wrote a fine tribute to Pap. I can feel her heart in that one!
    It was a pleasure to meet David this week he is certainly a kindred spirit!

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    March 25, 2018 at 7:53 am

    I live in Brevard, NC, and I love it here, but I love the mountains of Western NC, regardless of which town I am in. Beautiful scenery and beautiful people here.

  • Reply
    Colleen Holmes
    March 25, 2018 at 7:00 am

    Spider Web Canyon is a beautiful song. Happy morning to everyone.

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