The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #158212   Message #3742789
Posted By: Will Fly
10-Oct-15 - 04:53 AM
Thread Name: Need input on youth in folk music
Subject: RE: Need input on youth in folk music
Going back to the '60s music scene, when many of us here were getting into guitars and other instruments, it was very much simpler in its range of choices than today - seems to me.

If you played an acoustic instrument in a non-classical field - guitar, double bass, mandolin, clarinet, etc. - then the way forward in performing was probably either a folk club or a jazz club. If you played an electric instrument, you formed a band to gig in pubs and clubs, or even theatres. It worked the other way round as well - many of my friends started with acoustic guitars and then bought electric guitars as band membership beckoned.

In my neck of the woods, at any rate (NW Lancashire), I don't recall any folk music sessions - jazz jam sessions, yes, but not folk sessions. Not much in the way of singarounds either, though some generous people with big enough houses occasionally hosted a music party where we sat around and took turns to sing, play, eat and drink. No open mics as we know them today, and I'm sure there were probably folk festivals in the mid-'60s but I was never conscious of them and never attended one.

A very different social musical scene, then, from today where we have folk clubs, sessions, singarounds, festivals, and open mics in pubs. And a huge local choice down here in Sussex - I could be out playing every evening of the week, quite apart from regular paid work, if I chose to - though I accept it might be a bit sparser in other areas of the country. Given that choice, folk clubs will either hold their own or they won't - but that won't in any way alter what the "young folks" choose to do, which is to make music of their own choosing in their own way. Just as we did 50 years ago.