Musician Caroline Herring tackles segregation

The following excerpt is taken from Inside

"I grew up in a completely segregated place, except for our maid, and that is so cliché," Herring said of her childhood in Canton, Miss. "It dawned on me that something was so wrong."

She said many people fail to recognize problems with segregation because it is such a normal part of their lives, a theme that resonates in "Fair and Tender Ladies."

The song pays tribute to three Mississippi women-a poet, a nun and an anti-lynching activist, one of which, Thea Bowman, a black woman who lived and worked at a black Catholic Church just four blocks from Herring, appears in the second verse. In the song, Herring tells of the segregation that prevented her from entering Bowman's church for 30 years.

"From sidewalks and handlebars/Summer sun and evening stars/And unincorporated streets/Oh, heroine, I long to meet," she sings.

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