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Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England

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Naemanson 05 Dec 02 - 10:12 AM
curmudgeon 05 Dec 02 - 10:42 AM
Celtic Soul 05 Dec 02 - 11:03 AM
Naemanson 05 Dec 02 - 11:06 AM
BuckMulligan 05 Dec 02 - 11:38 AM
curmudgeon 05 Dec 02 - 12:25 PM
BuckMulligan 05 Dec 02 - 01:36 PM
Charley Noble 05 Dec 02 - 02:21 PM
Barry Finn 05 Dec 02 - 08:08 PM
Uncle Jaque 05 Dec 02 - 11:15 PM
Naemanson 06 Dec 02 - 10:40 AM
SINSULL 06 Dec 02 - 06:16 PM
Uncle Jaque 07 Dec 02 - 01:16 AM
Charley Noble 07 Dec 02 - 09:58 AM
GUEST,Nick 07 Dec 02 - 12:12 PM
SINSULL 07 Dec 02 - 12:39 PM
Barry Finn 07 Dec 02 - 05:04 PM
curmudgeon 08 Dec 02 - 06:32 PM
EBarnacle1 09 Dec 02 - 12:35 PM
Naemanson 10 Dec 02 - 09:25 AM
curmudgeon 10 Dec 02 - 06:38 PM
Tyler 11 Dec 02 - 04:12 PM
Charley Noble 11 Dec 02 - 04:56 PM
Julia 11 Dec 02 - 09:07 PM
Uncle Jaque 11 Dec 02 - 10:56 PM
Naemanson 12 Dec 02 - 10:05 AM
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Subject: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 10:12 AM

As you can see from the thread about the last chanty sing at China Seas Marine Trading Company we had a great time. Also, we are looking for another venue because our hosts have to move out of their current location.

Sinsull and Uncle Jaque each offered to open their homes for this which is greatly appreciated. However, there may be an alternative...

On Tuesday I met my uncle in Newburyport, Mass., to help him scatter my grandmother's ashes. After we had finished that task we adjourned for lunch to The Grog Restaurant. My uncle used to live in Newburyport and he is good friends with the owner of the restaurant. In talking to him I was introduced as a chanty singer. We discussed folk music venues and he expressed an interest in getting something going in his restaurant. He is interested in getting Roll & Go to do a concert down there. He has a good area in the cellar with a bar and stage and dance floor as well as tables.

My suggestion (actually it may be Charley Noble's) is that we hold a chanty sing there sometime. Is there any interest from the rest of the gang? It is a long drive from Richmond, about 2 ˝ hours, but much easier to reach from Boston, New Hampshire, and other areas. For those thinking of going from Maine you can figure on its being about a half hour beyond Portsmouth.

So, is there any interest? If I go forward with this can we expect to see some people showing up for it?


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: curmudgeon
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 10:42 AM

You can count on Linn and me to join you. I've actually played the Grog when it first opened in 1970, then a couple times later plus a few hoots.

It was a major folk venue in the '70s but descended into rock; probably because of the largely non-listening audiences.

We must discuss this more on Friday. I also wonder if I know your uncle. I know lots of folks from that area -- Tom


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Celtic Soul
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 11:03 AM

I wish you all the very best of luck. Wish I could come myself, but the commute is worse from Virginia to you guys than it is to Maryland, and I don't attend that one either (school age kid, ya know).

Keep the tradition alive!


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 11:06 AM

Well, Celtic Soul, I know from experience that school age kids don't stay that age. Sooner or later (and it will seem sooner) the kid will be out of his/her own and you can start to attend the gatherings. In the meantime, enjoy your kid while s/he stays home.


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: BuckMulligan
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 11:38 AM

The Grog!! Crikey, shades of the 70s indeed. Played there meself a few times too. I never experienced the non-listening audiences Tom refers to, but can believe it. Newburyport's yuppification set in around then, and some of the Grog denizens were a trifle scruffy around the edges.


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: curmudgeon
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 12:25 PM

The earlier audiences weren't that bad, but, as you say, the yuppification of the town has had an impact.

Were you Buck Mulligan then?


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: BuckMulligan
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 01:36 PM

Actually, I fronted "The Buck Mulligan Band" (name of band chosen because I happened to be re-reading Ulysses at the time) for a little while, then did some solo gigs. Very long time ago ('75-ish).


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Charley Noble
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 02:21 PM

This may work as a way to "tap" sea shanty and sea ballad interest in the greater Newburysport area, the exact dimensions of as yet undetermined.

The Press Room session makes a good model to start with, a regular free monthly session starting about 4 and ending about 9 pm. We might even try adding a paid evening sea music concert as a follow-up to the open session.

This gathering would, in my opinion, work best if there was a local host to keep in close contact with the management, and coordinate local publicity. Any Mudcatters near there?

Sure, let's discuss this some more over some brew at the Press Room, this Friday evening.

All for me grog,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Barry Finn
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 08:08 PM

That'd be great. Yes. Count me in. Barry


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Uncle Jaque
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 11:15 PM

Sounds interesting. I might consider it if I could bum a ride down - would share fuel & toll costs of course.

The last time I was in Newburyport it impressed me as being pretty yuppish, touristy and knickky-knackky. I wonder if folks there might consider us a little beneath them, for some reason.

I was wondering if the Bath Maritime Museum might be interested in hosting a hoot; they have plenty of room (the sail loft comes to mind) and we would no doubt be a big hit with the Touristas.
Every now and again they have a sailing ship in, and it would be grand to sing while actually pumping, hauling a line, walking a windlass etc.. (not to be overdone, of course). That would be a great photo as well as recording opportunity - and some fun, too, don't ye reckon?

Naemanson; have you got an "in" up there, by any chance?


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Naemanson
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 10:40 AM

I have no "in" there. That would be Charley, he knows the people there. Actually they have an even better space in the new addition. We sang there for the Pirate Party last year. It sounds good and has plenty of room for seating. Unfortunately it's even farther from NH and MA than Portland and that might cut down on participation.

Portsmouth would be perfect but the Press Room already fills that void.


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: SINSULL
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 06:16 PM

For the record: I am not pumping, hauling, or walking anything. I will however sell hotdogs and beer to the tourists.
SINS


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Uncle Jaque
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 01:16 AM

Not to worry, Sins; I'm sure that Charlie could come up with a hot-dog and beer-mongering chanty for you that would fit the job pretty well.

We certainly can't fault you, especially in these hard economic times, for going where the money is! };^{)~


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Charley Noble
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 09:58 AM

The Maine Maritime Museum is well worth a visit by the nautically inclined, and it would be a great setting for a shanty swap/workshop/concert special event. However, there is no individual currently within the staff who demonstrates any interest in the music, other than as "background" for periodic special events. With considerable organizing one could make arrangements to rent facilities for a weekend mini-festival, and it might catch on. Bob Webb, the former curator and a fine shanty singer spearheaded such an effort years ago with modest success at attracted an audience. The key thing, I think, is for the organizers to control their own publicity and related sponsorship, without counting on the Museum to do anything except collect a rent check.

Greater Portland Landmarks does control the Portland Observatory, the old wooden octogon signal tower on Munjoy Hill, and would, I'm sure, make it available for a monthly meeting during the summer at a time of our choosing. It's a great place for singing for 20 to 30 people. This time of year it's a trifle chilly. We have good relations with Landmarks staff.

I'd still like to hear from some Boston area Mudcatters, whether they would have any interest in attending a session at The Grog Restaurant in Newburyport.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: GUEST,Nick
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 12:12 PM

I live in Connecticut, away from the coast but have developed a taste for shanties etc. I might even be persuaded to swing by such an event if the timing was right. But that would make me (GASP) a tourist! From some comments, someone to be tollerated but not encouraged except perhaps to consume hot dogs and beer. Now that actually sounds fine!

Not so nautical Nick


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: SINSULL
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 12:39 PM

How much are you willing to pay for a hotdog and a beer? I am checking out the economic feasibility of my offer. And getting my license before anyone else horns in on my territory.


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Barry Finn
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 05:04 PM

Hi Charlie, that's a great area (Newburyport) for me, better than 1/2 the time it takes to get to Portland. It's also close enough to the the Cape Ann area to make it attractive to the many fine singers of sea music that reside in the area. As for Boston people I haven't seen many of them come out in force (with some exceptions) & support of any casual, informal singing jams much less sea music sessions in the past 20 yrs. That doesn't mean to say that there wouldn't be some who'd make an effort. It's a shame because the talent there is incredible & plenty of it too. It's a mecca for venues for folk, Irish sessions & accoustical music but not informal singing jams so I wouldn't count for to much support there, 20 yrs ago sure but not now. Barry


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: curmudgeon
Date: 08 Dec 02 - 06:32 PM

Nick -- Tourists meander and, we hope, squander aimlessly. Those who come here with a purpose are guests -- Tom


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: EBarnacle1
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 12:35 PM

It might be worth a visit or two from Brooklin.


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Naemanson
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 09:25 AM

Curmudgeon was going to check on using the Press Room in Portsmouth for a regular monthly Chanty Sing. He felt that might be doable. I would certainly like to participate in such gathering.


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: curmudgeon
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 06:38 PM

See my post on the Press Room Session thread -- Tom


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Tyler
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 04:12 PM

You can count me in for Newburyport. Sorry to mention it Sinsull, but you'll be competing with the chowder in the Grog, I recollect it was pretty good. However, being Newburyport, if you tried for designer dogs and pumpkin beer, you could probably corner the market.

If you pick a date, Naemanson, Barry and I can e-mail the old Paddy Burke's crowd, who've been looking for a place to sing since it closed to unattended bar events (singers) a few months ago. Michael O'Leary and others live near Gloucester I believe, also Mike P.(plays concertina and whistle sometimes at the PressRoom and Rocky's session) I think lives in Newburyport. Have e-mails & will contact on request.

Hope to see you all at the pressRoom before I head off to VA for Christmas week.   Tyler


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Charley Noble
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 04:56 PM

Tyler-

Happy to have a more local contact. See what you can do to assemble a new contact list of invitees; the Paddy Burke's crowd would seem a promising list to mine.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble, who works with Naemanson.


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Julia
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 09:07 PM

Regarding the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath, I happen to know that there are plenty of people on the STAFF that would love to have music there. My brother is Assistant Education Director. It is the Board (bored) that nixes such things, and they hold the purse strings. Perhaps if it were offered as a "non-profit" type event,i.e. an open sing, esp in the summer, they might be open. They now have a new facility with a kitchen and bar that would work for such an event.
Also, for the record, it was not Bob Webb who broached the mini-fest subject to them . Curmudgeon and Bat Goddess will remember the concert we did with Bill Bonyun and Nancy Mattila 'way back when which started the annual summer sea music concerts at the Choc Church. that all started out as a mini-festival which got axed by the museum.
Best to all- Julia


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Uncle Jaque
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 10:56 PM

A year or so ago I approached one of the History Profs @ USM Portland about doing something on Campus in conjunction with one of their History Classes. When I finally got ahold of someone, I discovered that they had a class on New England Cultural History, which covered the maritime heritage to some extent. Unfortunately, our timing was off as the class was nearly over by that time. The Prof. suggested that it might be an interesting concept if better timed. We would get a venue gratis, and USM would get a good dose of musical tradition for some of the Students to experience and participate in. Works for me.

2nd Semester starts after the Holidays, as I recall; anyone up for giving that another go?

Another thought - the Maine Historical Society. they have some pretty decent facilities in Portland, as does the nearby Museum. Sue and I are Members... what thinkest thou?

In the Summer the Yarmouth Community Services as well as the Yarmouth Historical Society feature regular educational and entertainment programs, usually on a Monthly basis, and are frequently looking for contributors. We would, no doubt, be blurring the lines of distinction between a "gig"/Performance and a less formal free-for-all session/hoot... can we do that? I have and continue to have dealings with both of these organizations from time to time, and would check into the possibility of doing something with them next Summer if anyone would like me to.

There is the 5th Maine Memorial Hall out on Peaks' Island which will hold a pretty fair crowd; they rent it out, but we have a few connections out there as well if interested. It would involve a ferry ride out and back for us mainlanders - but is that such a bad thing? (Especially if a bunch of us go over together). The 3rd Maine participates in a big whoopie out there about every August, and it is a beautiful spot.

Personally, I'd be more comfortable in a place a little less "inner city" than the Press Room seems to be - although I've never been there it seems from the reports of those who have that it's much more challenging to get into/out of/ park near than the China Seas. I'm not a big fan of bars, either.

Is there anything in the Seabrook or Hampton Beach NH area that might work?


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Subject: RE: Shanty Gathering Ideas for New England
From: Naemanson
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 10:05 AM

Hi Tyler! Good to know we might see you in Newburyport. Even if we can't coordinate the monthly shaty sing down there you can watch the Mudcat for news of a Roll & Go concert down there at some point next year (2003).

Last weekend I went to Massachusetts and on my way home I clocked the trip from Newburyport. For those of us in Maine I clocked it at 21 miles and 26 minutes from the center of the Portsmouth Bridge to the Newburyport Exit. For Charley Noble and me it is 112 miles and can be traversed in 1 hour and fifty minutes.

Jaque, overall I like the idea of going to some place local but I also need to point out that a lot of our participants come up from down south. We need to get as close to them as possible to make sure we can continue to get them in with us. However, if you can work out something in the islands for the spring/summer/fall we might be able to drag them in for a ferry ride and an afternoon on the islands.

Julia, I also like the idea of a shanty gathering at the Maine Maritime Museum. If we could exchange the use of their space for a daytime sing during the hours they are open we might be able to get a group together. If we don't charge money they might be amenable to letting us sing. It might even be a way to open the board's eyes to the value of music in a museum environment. Charley and I sang there for the open house a couple of weekends ago. People were saying they could hear us all through the museum. And they said they liked what they heard. Can your brother scope out the idea and se if it might fly? You could have him email me about it. I think he and I met at one of your parties.

This is shaping up well. I hope we can pull something together.


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