Yesterday was another antique radio swap meet, this time in Farmington. Here I stand with a box of electronic gravel,
the usual capacitor bins,
and the occasional hoochie mama.
The real thrill yesterday was the Ann Arbor Folk Festival. The evening was full of amazing music. It was the first time I’d seen many of the bands, including Girlyman whose harmonies blew me away and the Clair Lynch band with Claire’s pure yet slightly raspy voice. The huge surprise was the Carolina Chocolate Drops, reviving old negro string band music, throwing in a little jazz and a bunch of stories. If you ever get a chance, see these guys. Then there were the headliners, I’d seen Pete Seeger many times, he is truly a phenomenon and a national treasure. Last night he was helped out by his grandson Tao Rodriguez-Seeger, Woody’s grandaughter Sarah Lee Guthrie, and Johnny Irion, they had the entire auditorium singing. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house, as we all joined in on This Land is Your Land. The evening closed with a humble and kind Kris Kristofferson, doing all his old songs with a much craggier voice than when I’ve seen him years ago. Kristofferson had the courtesy to sing his songs as closely to the recordings as possible, and many of us in the audience knew every word. Too bad for Mark and Lynn, my companions. Mark asked that I sing the tacets, a joke I didn’t understand until Mark explained that those are the rests, when the musician doesn’t play. Smart aleck. I was surprised that I hadn’t heard several of the songs, like Darby’s Castle, in decades, and yet I still know every word. Truly a fabulous night for music, you shoulda been there!