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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
AlexB Folk Clubs, Closing, General Comment (90* d) RE: Folk Clubs, Closing, General Comment 11 Mar 09

I like folk clubs. I also have no problem with spending time with people a lot older than myself. I grew up doing so, and that wasn't in the folk scene. I'm in my early twenties.

Something I do take umbrage at is people treating young people as something "other". I find it patronising. We all have our own separate tastes, mine probably lie in areas similar to that which people here are talking about trying to preserve, others may not. Strangely enough there are older people who want folk to go in all new directions and think that folk as many people here want to keep it to be stuffy, just the same as some young'uns. Not much difference between the age groups there!

So stop all the "us" and "them"ing. Let every folk enthusiast take folk in his or her own direction. It is a living tradition and if certain aspects can no longer hold out on their own, then rather than keep them on life support you should let them go naturally. Write a biography, maybe in the future some enterprising individual shall read it and that aspect will undergo a rebirth. That said, I don't think that is the case at all - there may be a lull but I'm not convinced of any deaths right now.

As for Folkiedave's subsidies... that is a certain way to get me to leave the scene. I think the government has it's fingers in too many pies already and should be cut down significantly. I don't think tax payers should be forced to fund other people's interests and I don't like the way people go begging to increase the size of the state. The bigger it is, the more power it exerts and the more everybody has to pay just for more red tape and less freedom to do things the way they want. Not to mention the very idea of folk needing a subsidy makes it less of the people. It has survived so far through the efforts of private individuals (Sharp, Vaughan Williams, Baring Gould et al) as well as communities. Admittedly there is the odd bit of government funding here and there, there is with a lot of arts stuff. But the people kept it alive, even if at points it was only a handful of them, it still endured. The moment you get serious state intervention, it changes into something else.

So, again, let people take it where they will. It might not be the folk you knew when you were young, but then I highly doubt you, as an organic individual, are who you were back then either. You grew in years and experience, and took on board other influences to make you who you are today. In a few years time you won't be as you are now. At the core you are the same individual, but you have been shaped by many hands and events. So folk music has been shaped since before you were born, and will likely continue to do so after we have gone. It may branch into something we are not interested in... but like a tree there is nothing to stop us continuing our own branch, and for others to branch it still further. I don't think the roots are in any danger.

Just my ten pence worth (because these days tuppence just doesn't go far enough).


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