Now that the summer harvest is coming in, it’s time to put up!

On the preservation front this week: pickling beets, apple pie filling, apple butter, elderberry jam, peaches in syrup, zucchini pickles and pumpkin butter (going to use those gorgeous pumpkins!).  Next preservation round should be tomato sauce and pickled peppers.

We love to listen to all sorts of music (folk, country, Celtic, etc) while canning.  Well, not all the time, sometimes we like the “sounds of silence.”  Hearing the birds sing outside, the water trickle into the aquaponics pond, bubbling of the boiling water, pleasant popping of the jars sealing, or the rhythmic chopping sounds of the knife.   While other days we need to get rocking in the kitchen and belt out some good hard tunes.  Of course we are the kind to sing along and you may even catch us dancing too.

So we are curious, what’s your favorite tunes that you gets you in the canning mood.  Care to share your “Canning Soundtrack”


  1. Diane says:

    I have a satellite radio in our kitchen (we don’t get a lot of regular stations where we live in rural CA), and always put the bluegrass station on when I’m canning/preserving. Puts me in the mind of my West Virginia ancestors and when they would fill their own panties with goods at harvest time, which makes me feel like I’m part of a family legacy!

    • Diane says:


      Ummm, I meant to say, “fill their own PANTRIES” NOT panties, lol!

      • Rhonda says:

        That’s funny! Thanks for the laugh! 🙂

        • Anais says:

          @Rhonda: Yep had me in stitches.. LOL

      • Anais says:

        @Diane: Hey it made for a good laugh though.

    • Anais says:

      @Diane: Ah, the Blue Ridge mountains… reminds me of an “old” country song. 😉 Ahem. Panties? I know you MEANT pantry. Still pretty funny. Happy canning!

  2. Sarah says:

    Our local classic rock station is my favorite kitchen music when I’m in need to rock out. When I want something a bit more low-key, I’m a big fan of NPR.

    • Anais says:

      @Sarah: Oldies but goodies. They don’t make music like they used to!

  3. Lesa says:

    I am putting up tomatoes from my garden this week, and peaches in syrup next week. So far, I have four kinds of cucumber pickles, corn relish, end of garden pickles (I had lots of little bits that weren’t enough for anything by themselves), and several kinds of jams and jellies. I am planting my second crop in my small urban garden, green beans (which will be canned).

    Mostly, I like the silence or NPR. I often can with a friend, so when she is here, there is lots of lively conversation!

    • Anais says:

      @Lesa: Conversation is good! Sounds like you’ve been busy putting up the harvest. Happy canning and conversing!

  4. Mary says:

    Listen to Little Steven’s Underground Garage on satellite – the best all around mix of music anywhere – seriously that good

    • Glynis says:

      @Mary, I do wish we could get this! I love Kim Fowley’s show (not the music, but the commentary). Manfred plays my favorite music out of all the shows on Underground Garage. We only get to listen when we’ve had to rent a car!!!

      • Anais says:

        @Glynis: Sheesh, I must be missing something not having satellite radio!

    • Anais says:

      @Mary: Don’t have satellite radio. Though it seems a lot of our readers do! 😉 Always good to find a good station with GOOD music that you enjoy. Don’t listen to radio much but I hear it’s really turned commercial just like everything else.

  5. Sierra Mama says:

    I listen to Pandora online and recently I have been listening to a lot of Diana Krall, Ella Fitzgerald and Michael Buble. I also turn on the stations for Lady Antebellum, Bluegrass, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, U2, the Eagles, Dave Matthews Band and I also have a station for Hawaiian music.

    Just all depends on my mood, I guess : )

    • Anais says:

      @Sierra Mama: love that one, and that one and the other one. Hmmm seems we have similar taste in music! I agree, music is what fits the mood.

  6. Ginger says:

    dancing with knives….sounds like a movie

    I’m going to pick apples at an organic upick orchard, hopefully. If so I’ll make apple sauce and apple butter. If I find peaches, I plan to make Ginger Peachy Butter….delicious on our sprouted whole wheat sun oven bread.

    • Anais says:

      @Ginger: Who said anything about dancing with knives? LOL. Hmmm Ginger Peachy Butter sounds scrumptious. Right now we are sprouting some ginger tubers, hope to grow our own.

    • CE says:

      @Ginger, Ginger have you tried canned apple slices for the winter? You just slice them and heat and then pack in juice you make from simmering the peels. Then strain the peels and you can add a bit of sugar if you want. Pour over the hot slices and process. You can can plain or with a bit of spice and you have a wonderful hot winter breakfast that tastes like apple pie but without any guilt. I also love canned pear halves with a bit of ginger for a nice winter breakfast or a warm desert. Peaches with a bit of lemon juice, vanilla and just a touch of nutmeg is nice too.

  7. Glynis says:

    I find it hard to hear above the loud bubble and jingling sound of the bottles in the water bath sometimes (I don’t have a rack, so they bounce away!!). But when I turn on the tunes my faves for such happy work are happy songs – old boogaloo, soul and 60’s french pop music!

    • Anais says:

      @Glynis: Sounds like some cool tunes in a cool canning kitchen. How’s the weather been there in Atlanta, still acting up?

  8. Genie of the Shell says:

    My new favorite: Made the Harbor, debut album by Mountain Man! It’s three young women doing some gorgeous Appalachian harmonizing. My husban’s family is from the Mountains, so I feel connected to the history with this music.

    • Anais says:

      @Genie of the Shell: Oooh, sounds like my kind of music. LOVE Appalachian music and will have to check them out. Do they have a website?

      • Andrea says:

        @Anais, @Genie: I’m glad you mentioned them because I heard about them on NPR I think, but it slipped my mind before I could make a note to look them up.
        @Anais: Found their website at http://mountainman.bandcamp.com

        • Anais says:

          @Andrea: Thanks for the link, will have to look them up!

  9. Melina says:

    I guess I’m old school. When I can/dehydrate/chop/freeze I listen to vintage John Denver. That’s what I listened to back when I was learning all these skills, and I gravitate back to the good ol’ days when I was young and the kids were little. And when the snow is flying and spring is far away, I like his “Garden Song”, especially. Inch by inch, row by row, gonna make this garden grow…

    • Anais says:

      @Melina: I grew up listening to JD! Love his music. I had a his record as a kid and would play it hours on end singing at the top of my voice. Ditto on the GARDEN SONG – sure puts one in a gardening mood.

      • Melina says:

        Yeah, your dad and I are about the same age, so it stands to reason you were raised on JD. I still miss that boy.

        • Anais says:

          @Melina: Yep, so sad when he passed away. His songs touched and continue to touch so many.

  10. Amber says:

    I have a toddler running around here so we listen to a lot Tom Chapin. He dances and plays in the living room, and I run in and out while cans are in the pot playing with him.

    • Anais says:

      @Amber: How fun! Thanks for sharing.

  11. Frank says:

    Last night my wife and I canned 20 jars of Blackberry Jam while we listened to our collection of old rock-n-roll – Eagles Hotel California – Journey and such. This morning I had to try the extra jam I put in a bowl with my toast and as usual Wild Blackberry is our favorite. I need to pick some more berries as 20 jars won’t last the whole year with relatives and friends asking for a jar after they taste it.
    Have a Great Day!!

    • Anais says:

      @Frank: Our music friends who play guitars at one of our gatherings did a really cool rendition of Hotel California. One of the girls brought her violin to the piece and brought down the house literally -was a magical night. Sounds yummy, thanks for sharing songs and canning adventures.

  12. Laura says:

    Dickens on CD is my favorite canning sound. Last week I canned 49 pints of apricot jam and 15 quarts of blueberry sauce to Great Expectations. This week will be more of the same but moving on to David Copperfield. Several of my 13 kids like to help and silently listen along. It’s the most peaceful activity at my house all year!

    • Anais says:

      @Laura: Books on tape! What a great idea. Get reading down while canning – perfect! Love Dickens, such classic literature, such classic characters. I can imagine the books on tape must be fun to listen to. Wow, pretty impressive preservation effort you have going on there. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Joy Giles says:

    Here in Austin, Texas — we have put up green beans, dill and bread and butter pickles from our garden, apple butter from a friend’s apple tree, and plum and peach butter from the fruits of the farmers’ market.

    • Anais says:

      @Joy Giles: Thanks for sharing your preservation efforts. Happy canning!

  14. Mari says:

    I’m canning for the first time on Monday! We’re doing a peach preserve from peaches from our produce exchange. Canning was on my list to learn this summer and I can’t wait to try it. Next up will be dill pickles, have lots of cucumbers from the exchange as well. I’ve always freezed my pasta sauces and I can’t wait to tackle those next. I’ll have the tops of my cupboards filled with cans before I know it!
    As far as listening to, I like quiet when I’m in the kitchen. Just me and what I making and the occasional whiny child!

    • Angela says:

      I’m a first year gardener and first time canner in Winston Salem, NC. Tried pasta sauce (with the LOADS of tomatoes we have grown naturally) last night.. Turned out a bit runny, and not all of my jars sealed properly. I guess I just need to give the pressure canner another try and cook the sauce a bit longer. As far as my kitchen tunes: I have finely tuned my Pandora station with smooth listening of the Eagles, CCR, Journey, Eric Clapton, the Beatles, Pink Floyd, and other greats from the 60s – 70s. Good music always fills my soul (and is helping to fill my kitchen cupboards) with peace and happiness! 🙂

      • Anais says:

        @Angela: First off, welcome to the world of growing and preserving your own. That’s so neat to hear from a newbie. GOOD FOR YOU! Here’s a tip for running pasta sauce. When you eventually use it add a bit of tomato paste, should do the trick to thicken it up a bit. Also if your jars didn’t seal properly you can always water bath them again. Remove the rims/lids and wipe down the rims and try again! WOW our readers seem to have similar taste in music! 😉 I agree good music is GOOD for the soul. Welcome aboard and happy growing and canning!

    • Anais says:

      @Mari: Congrats. That’s wonderful! You are going to have so MUCH FUN. Not to mention your pantry is going to be sooo purty filled with those jars of goodies. Today was a quiet day of canning in the kitchen too – someday’s you just like to listen to what’s all around you. Just you, the kitchen and your million thoughts! 😉 Thanks for sharing, happy canning!

      • Mari says:

        @Anais, Just want to share the first try at canning preserves went amazing! With local, Indiana peaches we made honey peach preserve. Now on to my tomato sauce since it’s tomato season right now! Thanks for being an inspiration!

        • Anais says:

          @Mari: Good for you. Glad to hear your off on a your cantastic journey. Heh, I am doing tomatoes too. Right now actually, they are in the water bath as we speak. Happy preserving!

  15. Cynthia says:

    Firstly, I have to thank Diane for that funny slip-up earlier – my partner and I laughed so loud!!

    As for canning music…big band is a favourite in the kitchen as well as classic Canadian rock and folk tunes. I am also listening (and re-listening) to Woodpigeon, The Good Lovelies and Xavier Rudd.

    We’re off to see Stompin’ Tom Connors next week, so I expect he’ll keep us company as we prepare a batch of dilly beans!

    …side note: we enjoyed the first of our organic tomatoes from our greenhouse yesterday & today, still warm from the sun and spiced with fresh ground pepper. It was absolute bliss…no music needed to enjoy the moment except the thanks we sent upwards.

    • Anais says:

      @Cynthia: I like to reading about the range of musical taste going from one spectrum to the other. Sounds like you are off to hear some good ‘ol foot stompin music there. Perfect for dilly beans I think. Nothing beats a homegrown tomato… well, that and an ear of corn just plucked from the stalk. Bliss is right. Amen.

  16. Ruth G says:

    Last weekend we returned from a visit to my f-i-l in Lancaster County, PA with a car load of fruits and veggies that were gifts from him and some of his Amish neighbors. When we arrived home our own garden was bursting so we had a marathon canning/freezing/dehydrating session. Over two days (while listening to Celtic music… fiddle music keeps me moving and happy) we put up 24 jars of our own green beans, 6 jars of dilly beans, 16 pints of cream of mushroom soup (friend works at a mushroom farm and gave us a flat), 9 half pints of plain mushrooms, couple quarts of dehydrated mushrooms, nine pints of blueberries frozen, 1 pint of dehydrated blueberries, 2 quarts of our own blackberries frozen (to be made into jelly at a later date when we have more time), 6 jars of peach salsa and 6 jars of peach jam. Whew! We were exhausted but delighted with the additions to our pantry.
    Got our first red tomato yesterday! YEA!!
    Have a wonderful week all,
    Ruth in New Hampshire

    • Anais says:

      @Ruth G: Love fiddle music, any particular CD/band you recommend? We have a a bunch of Green Linnet Celtic music CD’s – especially like Loreena McKennitt. Wow, sounds like an eventful trip, bringing home all those goodies. OOOH to have friends and in laws like you – LUCKY! Have a wonderful week too!

      • Melina says:

        I’m a HUGE McKennitt fan! Got to see her in concert a couple of years ago and it was a great show.

        • Anais says:

          @Melina: Lucky you! Can you believe we’ve NEVER been to concert to hear our any of fave music groups. Yep, that’s something I’m going have to do one day! 😉

      • Ruth G says:

        @Anais, I’m probably showing my age here but my first love and still favorite is Silly Wizard, one of the seminal contempory Celtic bands back in the 70’s-90’s. They are no longer performing together but I used to be a bit of a groupie, travelling all over New England to see them when they came to the US (from Scotland). The fiddle payer Johnnie Cunningham died a few years ago, but his brother Phil Cunningham is still performing with Shetland fiddler Aly McBain (saw them a couple years ago) and the lead vocalist Andy M. Stewart is still performing as well.

        I do like newer, younger groups, but listening to Silly Wizard reminds me of such good times in addition to being wonderful music! 🙂

  17. Suseon says:

    It’s funny, when I first saw your post I just happened to have been jammin’ to Tom Waits. Typically we love to listen to folk and Celtic music too but Tom Waits has a gritty sort of something I love to dance to!

    • Anais says:

      @Suseon: Serendipity I suppose. 😉

  18. Cathi Lesher says:

    I love all the old 70s stuff you guys enjoy, love, love, love bluegrass and mountain music, but surprised not to see Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass listed. . . good stuff.
    But best of all webstream the Prayer Room from ihop.org the absolute end all.

  19. Cheryl says:

    Yesterday, I put up peaches and zucchini pickles and hummed various Star Wars instrumentals.
    I believe the Imperial Death March lyrics should be….”Bah bah bah please don’t let me drop this jar…Oh my gosh this is really, really hot…Please, please seal for me won’t you please?”

    • Anais says:

      @Cheryl: LOL That’s so funny, thanks for sharing.

  20. meg says:

    Hi Anais,
    I have been visiting your site for quite some time and I have found it makes good reading .I live in Northern Ireland weather here very damp at times I have a garden about 3/4 of an acre and I try to grow most of my own food make jams and bake a lot
    I am enjoying visiting your site and hope you keep it going.

    • Anais says:

      @meg: Hello you from the Emerald Isle. 😉 So glad you are enjoying our online book. There’s certainly a lot of reading and hopefully helpful gems. Thank you for the positive feedback, always a joy and pleasure to hear from our readers. Happy Spring!

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