Ashton and Rama Cheromaya perform “Mayan Queen”

Ashton and Rama Cheromaya
Ashton and Rama Cheromaya
In this archive recording from 2010, Ashton and Rama Cheromaya perform their original duet “Mayan Queen” in front of Malaprop’s cafe and bookstore in downtown Asheville. If you like powerful female voices in the acoustic folk genre, this will be well worth listening to. The duo was also known for a time (and may still be known, actually) as Sweet Water Revolver, and there are many additional recordings of them floating around the internet if you like what you hear.

What’s up with that video, though? WLike many of the very early Busk Break recordings, there is no original video to accompany the audio, and I’ve once again paid a visit to the public-domain Prelinger archive content at to make some thing suitable for sharing. In this case, I’ve edited down a 1954 educational film called “Habit Patterns” to be more in fitting with the audio. The original is largely about the terror that comes from having lazy habits, and tells the story of a girl who no one likes because she wore a stained top to school one day.

The edited version is more a story of unrequited teenage attraction that neither the young girl or the society lives in is able to accept. It’s a little hokey, but if you watch the original film, I think you’ll agree that my version tells a better story.

Why is this video foolishness needed at all? As I’ve written before, in the very early days of the Busk Break project, recording video wasn’t really an option. The Busk Break series began in large part as a rationalization for buying a relatively fancy portable audio recorder, which I’d originally purchased to explore podcasting and to record City Council meeting in Spartanburg, SC, for a community media project I was running at the time. I didn’t own a video camera a the time, and wouldn’t have been able to edit video from it even if I had.

I did have a small point-and-shoot camera, thankfully, so most of the early Busk Break recordings at least have a still photo to go along with the audio. In this case, it also affords me an excuse to have a little fun in the editing, as most Busk Break videos aren’t terribly complicated.