Appalachian Studies Series brings Kathy Mattea to speak, sing at Miami Hamilton
February 25, 2011
Two-time Grammy Award winning singer, Kathy Mattea brings “My Coal Journey” to Miami Hamilton’s Harry T. Wilks Conference Center on Wednesday, March 16 at 7:30 pm. This is a free event, but tickets are required due to limited seating. Email Dawn Tsirelis at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 513.785.1913.
“My Coal Journey” is a one-hour program incorporating stories from Mattea’s family history and her current advocacy for the environment, combined with a PowerPoint slideshow and a performance of songs from her 2008 release, “COAL.”
Growing up in Cross Lanes, W.V., Mattea's home place lies in the heart of coal country. Both her grandfathers were coal miners, and her parents were raised in coal camps. Her mother once worked for the United Mine Workers Association. Mattea's own coal journey has led her to consciously learn her family's oral history. In the past several years, she also witnessed others' stories of coal, from all sides of the issue of mountaintop removal.
In 2007, after the Spago Mine Disaster killed 12 West Virginia miners, Mattea was asked to perform at their service. Her family history and feelings about the experience, coupled with a rising political activism, led her to take action as an advocate and musician. With roots based in traditional Irish music, Mattea captures the injustice, tragedy and pride known by miners and their kin, and effectively translates the experience for listeners who’ve never set foot in hill country.