Listen to Southern Nature - Reading

Reading Picture

Earth, Air, Fire and Water

  • Titles and Origins: First Movement - EARTH
    Janisse Ray - "For the Edge of the World" from Elemental South;
    Jim Kilgo - "Black Drink" from Elemental South;
    Janisse Ray - "The Bear;"
    Bill Belleville - "Bears" from Elemental South;

    Second Movement - AIR
    Jan DeBlieu - "Into the Dragon's Mouth" from Wind;
    Janisse Ray - "Riding Bareback through the Universe" from Elemental South;
    Chris Camuto - excerpt from "Atagahi" from Another Country;

    Third Movement - FIRE
    Franklin Burroughs - "Smoke and Mirrors" from Elemental South;
    Janisse Ray - "Built by Fire" from Ecology of a Cracker Childhood;

    Fourth Movement - WATER
    Janisse Ray - recitation of names of Southern rivers;
    Chris Camuto - excerpt from "Windows" from Another Country;
    Janisse Ray - "Butterfly" from Elemental South;
    Bill Belleville - "Diving into the Heart of a Poem" from Elemental South
  • Music Interludes: Music: Randall Bramblett (saxophone, recorder and percussion) and Chuck Leavell (piano). In 2005, Chuck Leavell released the CD "Southscape" whose cuts "Pagan PigDance," "Altamaha," "Savannah" and "Backburn" were based on themes he composed as musical interludes for the Earth, Air, Fire and Water broadcast reading.

Broadcast live from The Chapel on the Old Campus of the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia. The program was a production of The University of Georgie Environmental Ethics Certificate Program, Georgia Sea Grant, and WUGA-FM. The Writers Bill Belleville is an award-winning environmental writer and filmmaker who lives in Sanford, Florida. He has traveled widely on assignment for the Discovery Channel, diving magazines and other periodicals. Assignments have included the White Sea of Russia, the Great Barrier Reef, the Amazon Basin, and Central America. His book, River of Lakes: A Journey on Florida's St. Johns River, has been described as a natural and cultural history reminiscent of Thoreau's Walden or William Warner's Beautiful Swimmers. Franklin Burroughs grew up in South Carolina and now lives in Maine, where he teaches at Bowdoin College. His book, The River Home: A Return to the Carolina Low Country, chronicles a canoe voyage through the Carolinas on the Waccamaw River. His account of this distinctive and rapidly disintegrating backwater explores life on and off the river, topography, and how this landscape echoes in the speech, memories, and circumstances of the people he encounters. Christopher Camuto is the author of Another Country: Journeying Toward the Cherokee Mountains, an engaging personal reflection on the 1992 reintroduction of the red wolf to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the southern Appalachians. An expert fly fisherman and proponent of conservation of wild trout and their habitat, he is the author of A Fly Fisherman's Blue Ridge. Jan DeBlieu makes her home on Roanoke Island, on the Outer Banks off the North Carolina coast. She is the author of Wind: How the Flow of Air Has Shaped Life, Myth and the Land, winner of the John Burroughs Medal for nature writing. Her previous book, Hatteras Journal, is a vividly rendered account of the rigors and rewards of dwelling in a habitat where only the most resilient forms of life manage to prevail. James Kilgo is the author of Deep Enough for Ivorybills and Inheritance of Horses, both essay collections, and the novel Daughter of My People. His essays have appeared in the Gettysburg Review and other literary magazines as well as in the Sierra Club anthology American Nature Writing 1996. His deeply personal essays reflect a style classically Southern in its pacing and its feel for the land. His discoveries show us that that the lives of human beings are an integral part of the larger rhythms of nature and the seasons. Janisse Ray is the author of Ecology of a Cracker Childhood, winner of the Southeastern Booksellers Award for Nonfiction in 1999, the Southern Book Critics Circle Award for nonfiction, and the Southern Environmental Law Center Award in 2000. In March 2002, Ecology of a Cracker Childhood was designated as "the book all Georgians should read this year" by the Georgia Center for the Book. A naturalist and environmental activist, she has published essays and poetry in Wild Earth, Orion, Florida Naturalist, and Georgia Wildlife. She is also a nature commentator for Georgia Public Radio. The Musicians Randall Bramblett grew up in south Georgia and has been a creative force in Southern music since the seventies. Randall was a session horn player with Capricorn Records in the 1970s before joining the influential, but unclassifiable, group Sea Level (where he first began his association with Chuck Leavell). Since then Randall has had an active career as a sideman and session player with some of the biggest names in rock and roll (The Allman Brothers, Steve Winwood, Atlanta Rhythm Section, Levon Helm, Gregg Allman), a bandleader (The Randall Bramblett Band) and a songwriter. His latest record is No More Mr. Lucky on New West Records. Chuck Leavell is the pianist of choice for the best of blues-based rock and roll. He was a member of The Allman Brothers Band from 1972 to 1976, joined the Rolling Stones for the 1982 "Tattoo You" tour and has been playing and recording with them ever since, toured and recorded with Eric Clapton on the famous "Unplugged" tour, and has recorded and toured with a long list that goes on to include George Harrison, Rod Stewart and many others. Chuck has called middle Georgia home since he first arrived as a session player at Macon's Capricorn Records in the early seventies. He owns and manages Charlane Plantation, a 2000-acre tree farm outside Macon. The farm was chosen "Outstanding Tree Farm of the Year" by the Georgia Forestry Association in 1990, and Chuck has just published Forever Green, a book which advocates sustainable forestry. Executive Producer: Dorinda G. Dallmeyer Producer/Director/Announcer: David A. Bryant Stage Director: George Davidson Broadcast Engineer: Jim Hawkins of Electro-Acoustic Systems Engineers: Sandy Mayfield and Danny Price Production Assistant: Mary Whitehead Graphics and Design Support: Charlotte Ingram Special thanks to Mac Rawson of the Georgia Sea Grant Program, Davin Welter and Abbie Thaxton of WUGA-FM, Lori Lang of the Office of Performing Arts, and Judy Howell of Telephone Services.