Surprising But True

Fiction has to stick to what seems plausible, but real life does not have to abide by our expectations of what is possible. Over the centuries all kinds of unbelievable things have happened, and Diane tells some of these delightful, true stories.

She begins with the age-old tale of the woman warrior in disguise, celebrated in dozens of songs over the last few hundred years. We hear traditional songs and one that Diane wrote about the unlikely life of Deborah Samson, who served during the American Revolution and later became one of the first women to speak in public as she toured New England.

The origins of some of our most familiar songs are surprising. We hear the birth and development of Yankee Doodle, including some particularly rude verses; the original words to the melody used by Francis Scott Key for our national anthem; plus tragedies involving rattlesnakes and shipwrecks. Diane's The Great Sea-Serpent of Cape Ann traces the long history of the giant serpent frequently sighted off the Massachusetts coast, and her American Army of Two hails the courage of two teenage girls who saved the town of Scituate from British attack in the War of 1812 by playing a certain melody.

To book this performance, please contact us. email

The songs include:

- Fair Maid Sailor
- The Ballad of Deborah Samson
- The Cruel War
- On Springfield Mountain
- The Wreck of the Caspian
- Lady Franklin's Lament
- Les Filles de Roi
- '63 is the Jubilee

"Your concert was magical. I am so thrilled about all the research you did -- it worked beautifully with the songs you selected. So many people remarked on how wonderful the performance was. We feel blessed!"

-- Barbara Palmer, The Bidwell House Museum, Monterey MA (2016)

Diane with Guitar and Dulcimer