“And for love’s sake, each mistake, ah, you forgave”

In Uncategorized on August 24, 2011 at 9:39 am

I was very fortunate to grow up in a household where music was used as entertainment, therapy, and as a way of expressing ourselves. I learned to play the piano by ear. My aunts Jackie, Joyce, Velma, and even Melissa and my uncle Terry were pretty good singers. But it was my uncle Earl who somehow consumed all of the musical talent for himself or so I thought. Now other relatives all share in this gift. Unfortunately, however, I could not carry a tune in a bucket and I attribute that wonderful gift to my mother. Odd isn’t it; I could play it by ear, but singing was never a strength! And a staple in our household were Ashford and Simpson. And so, Nick Ashford, one of the most talented artists I have come to follow passed away after a battle with throat cancer.

He and his wife, Valerie Simpson, seemingly knew how to touch many lives, but especially mine. “Solid” was my ultimate jam, then as a kid, and now as an adult. “The thrill is still hot, hot, hot, hot…” And when I marry my affinity for music with my affinity for politics, I am in heaven. The election thrill is still hot as Hattiesburg Mayor Johnny DuPree marched through town after town on a grassroots campaign “becoming the first African American in modern history to win a major-party nomination for Mississippi governor.”

DuPree will now face Republican candidate and Lt. Governor Phil Bryant on November 8. DuPree said that “What we’ve been trying to express to people is a message,” he said. “I don’t think I have to focus on (race).” After realizing defeat, Democratic challenger Bill Luckett stated “We’re gonna have a party tonight. We’re just not gonna be celebrating my victory, I’m afraid.” He continued that “We’re gonna celebrate changing Mississippi…(DuPree)’s a good man, an honorable man [and] he’s a whole lot better than we’ll ever get with Phil Bryant.”

Back in July 2009 rumor mills had Greenville’s Mayor Heather Hudson as a potential candidate for either the Governor’s or Lt. Governor’s race. While that did not come to fruition, it is DuPree and his supporters who have taken on the challenge in this election thrill. As Ashford in Simpson would say “and with that feeling we were willing to take a chance, so against all odds, we made a start.”

The start that DuPree has made, the start that Mississippi has made is worth mentioning, noting, and documenting. I am greatly anticipating seeing a great campaign from Bryant and DuPree, as politics takes center stage and I will be anxiously watching, taking it all in.


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