Friday, July 22, 2016

Tom Brosseau - No Matter Where I Roam - North Dakota Impressions by crossbillrecords

Tom Brosseau on 'No Matter Where I Roam' from his upcoming Crossbill Records release, "North Dakota Impressions" available worldwide on September 16, 2016. A funny thing happened the first time I performed 'No Matter Where I Roam', a song about finding signs of your home in unfamiliar places. At the Kent Stage in Kent, Ohio in 2012, when I opened for the Punch Brothers, a man and his wife approached me in the lobby after the show, where I was selling my CDs at the merchandise table. They had arrived late and saw only the last song in my set. They didn't know my name, they didn't know my music. We came for the Punch Brothers, the man admitted. We didn't know there was an opening act, too. But we're curious. In the song you performed tonight you sang about sugar beets, and my wife and I thought to ourselves, OK, this kid's gotta be from North Dakota. Sugar beets are big business where I grew up. My grandfather, Dean, worked at the American Crystal Sugar plant in Drayton: an important part of the local economy. Very much part of the local identity. When the harvest season is in full swing, the beet trucks roll right through town. Every now and again a beet will fall over the side, round and heavy and purple, partly masked in dirt. Mainly the beets are turned into table sugar. But it seems nothing of the beet goes to waste. Pulp and molasses are two of the by-products and both are used in animal feed. Everywhere I go I meet someone with ties to North Dakota. For a state that doesn't have a huge population, and not too many tourist attractions, it sure has an impressive wingspan. When I mention where I'm from on stage, someone will always find me afterward, and say, Guess where I'm from.

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