Ella's Open Road
It Just Progressed From There (1:25)
You Can't Be Discouraged (1:34)
Keep On Keepin' On (0:42)
Handling Racism (2:19)
History Is Important (1:11)
Public Television: Season 9
civil rights movement, criticism, critique, dance, discouragement, feeling it, growing, harmonica, helping others, history, impact, instrument, learning, martin luther king, music, prejudice, progress, Rosa Parks, slavery, solving problems
- Her uncle would play harmonica in his free time; as a child, she was captivated by the sound.
- Mother put in extra hours at work to buy Ella her own harmonica.
- She was a teenage director for the YWCA; everyone always wanted Ella to perform because she’d make up cute songs and dances.
- Eventually, someone mentioned that she should start seriously recording her children’s songs; was introduced to a record executive.
- Says every professional has to acclimate themselves to criticism; people have told her her songs are “the worst,” she doesn’t get discouraged.
- Never had formal harmonica training; says she just thinks about the tune, then she plays it.
- Makes her feel good to be able to share her music, know she’s leaving a positive impact.
- Says, “if there’s something you like, and it’s not harmful to other people, and it’s helping people grow, that’s a plus.”