Of course you can only 'tell it like you see it' but it is quite obvious that we find ourselves, once again, to be largely talking about American traditional music. The importance of which I am not going to dispute for that is the traditional music that first moved and involved me. It was the meeting place of European and African cultures and the resulting musical mixture excited me far more than my own (English) traditional music ever did or does now.
I do think that this insular approach and narrow definition does not fully recognise and appreciate the vitality of the traditional music that is now to be seen, world-wide. The main focus of this, at the moment, is more on the instrumental side, rather than in song but to see this passion displayed among our young, is very exciting and should insure a very healthy future for traditional music.
The perception of the threat of the singer/songwriter, of them being a different species and not calling their music folk, is almost entirely an American preoccupation and prejudice. It is one that just results in a lot of good folk not hearing a lot of good (and some, I admit, not so good) folk.
Do American festivals not now reflect all of this global diversity in traditional music or do the 'old curmudgeons' amongst our ranks, just not attend any of them???