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1999 & 2000 Camp Harmony???

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Barry Finn 02 Jan 00 - 11:26 PM
Barbara 02 Jan 00 - 11:44 PM
Joe Offer 02 Jan 00 - 11:57 PM
Mían 03 Jan 00 - 09:52 AM
Mark Cohen 03 Jan 00 - 10:27 PM
Joe Offer 27 Dec 00 - 12:45 PM
Joe Offer 02 Jan 01 - 05:13 PM
radriano 03 Jan 01 - 05:17 PM
Mark Cohen 03 Jan 01 - 07:24 PM
Joe Offer 03 Jan 01 - 08:34 PM
Susan A-R 03 Jan 01 - 10:25 PM
radriano 09 Jan 01 - 11:10 AM
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Subject: Camp Harmony???
From: Barry Finn
Date: 02 Jan 00 - 11:26 PM

There've have been a couple of posts mentioning the San Francisco muiscal getaway Camp Harmony (hi Joe & Barabra). I was at one 21 or 22 years ago (Debbie was doing the great job of cooking back then too) & had a blast. I for one would love to hear more from you that were there. Thanks Barry

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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Barbara
Date: 02 Jan 00 - 11:44 PM

Hi Barry, just made it back today and I had a blast, we, uhm sang and danced and, uhm, where was I? Valentine was there, a delight, Larry Hanks, Debby still cooks scrumptious meals, and uhm, I, ahhh, what was I saying? Oh, it's really hard to get enough sleep. YAWWWNN...

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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Joe Offer
Date: 02 Jan 00 - 11:57 PM

Well, Barry, Harmony lasted from Tuesday December 28 until today (January 2), so it's a bit longer and more relaxed than the 3-day Getaway in Washington, DC. The cook is the same, Debby McClatchy, but as I said in another thread, she serves breakfast at 10 AM, so participants can get the most out of the great music that happens at night. There is a wide variety of music - bluegrass, rock 'n' roll, all sorts of intrumental stuff, and song circles with traditional music. I went to sessions where I learned Balkan, Zulu, and Ladino songs. There's dancing every night - contra dance, swing, international folk dancing, and U.S. sock hop stuff. The most sacred moment of the camp is the three-hour session of sea songs and pub songs, hosted by Dick Holdstock and lubricated with the kind assistance of John Barleycorn.
Yes, the legendary Faith Petric is still there, and still going strong. The San Francisco Folk Music Club has been around since 1948, and Faith has headed up since 1962, I believe. Faith and a number of others have a vast number of wonderful songs in their heads. Valentine Doyle was visiting from Connecticut, and brought lots of Gordon Bok songs. Mudcatters Bev and Jerry Praver brought all sorts of songs, and did some especially good harmonies. Our Blessings Barbara sang lots of songs, too; but she had to borrow my reading glasses all last night so she could read her notes and lyrics. Ray Frank was there, too - many of you may know of him and his guitar workshops.
While the group singing was good, I think I'd say it wasn't quite as rich and full of harmony as the music we heard at the Getaway - I think there's a bit more emphasis on individual singers. That's a hard comparison to make, though - both camps had many moments when the music was absolutely sublime.
So, I had a great time, and I think I'm going to try to make it to both the Getaway and Camp Harmony every darn year.
-Joe Offer-

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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Mían
Date: 03 Jan 00 - 09:52 AM

huh. right under my nose & i didna even know it.

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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Mark Cohen
Date: 03 Jan 00 - 10:27 PM

Wish I'da been there. Next year, I hope I will be. Joe, there have been some times at Harmony where the harmony has sent chills down my spine, and other times when I've said, where are all the singers? And I didn't get to go very many times at that. But I agree, there's always something wonderful there. Regards to all my old SFFMC friends. Good to hear Faith and Valentine are still doing well.


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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Dec 00 - 12:45 PM

Camp Harmony 2000: Dec 27-Jan 1

Well, will Mark make it this year? I'll be there, and I'm sure Radriano and Blessings Barbara will be. So will sometime Mudcatter dadgbe. Anybody else?

See you in a week, folks.
-Joe Offer-

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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Joe Offer
Date: 02 Jan 01 - 05:13 PM

Nope, Mark didn't make it - but people talked about him...

There were a number of sometime Mudcatters at Camp Harmony, but the only "regulars" were Radriano, Joe Offer, and Blessings Barbara. Many people seem to think of Mudcat as a "chat room" where serious discussions of folk music are becoming hard to find - I didmy best to try to convince them that good music discussions still happen here.

There were many people at the camp who have visited here, and some are occasional Mudcat contributors - dadgbe (Ray Frank), Dick Holdstock, Riggy Rackin (click for info about his terrific new gospel CD), and Linda Mattson. I probably missed a few. It ran from Wednesday to Monday this year. Since it's longer than the Getaway, it has a more relaxed atmosphere. It also has dancing going almost constantly, and may have a widervariety of music.

I was the kitchen cleanup chief, so I had the privilege of working under Debby McClatchy and Ray Frank 5 hours a day. I'm tired and sore, but the kitchen is spotless - and I sure had a great time. I hope more Mudcatters can go next year.

-Joe Offer-

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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: radriano
Date: 03 Jan 01 - 05:17 PM

I've been attending Camp Harmony for more years than I can count, even back when it was in another location and was called Bothin. Debbie McClatchy has been cook for the camp as far as I can remember.

For me, Camp Harmony is as much a time to catch up with old friends as it is a music camp. The camp is wholly run by volunteers and is probably a bit less organized than some other camps. Sessions happen organically so you have to either start one or ferret one out. Workshops are organized by the campers themselves and can be a bit uneven in terms of quality but usually are quite good.

There's the annual "John Barleycorn" workshop, the first half of which is a beer tasting workshop run by Charlie Fenton, who is a dance caller and is very involved in the running of the San Francisco Folk Club. Charlie managed to have two bottles each of Anchor Steam's Christmas Ale from the last fifteen years or so. Each year's Christmas Ale is made from a different recipe and clear tumblers were passed out so we could judge color as well as taste. Needless to say, there were other beers and ales, both light and dark, to titilate our palates. Following directly on the heels of the Barleycorn workshop was the Pub Songs workshop, led by Riggy and directly following that was the Sea Shanties workshop led by Dick Holdstock.

There was a concert every night of the campout which consists of those campers who sign up for it. Sort of a "this is what's I'm doing this year" event. This can be a touch and go experience but this year I found the concerts exceptionally excellent with the only drawback being no sound system.

I always share a cabin with the same friends every year. We all snore which makes saving beds in the cabin a cinch. Joe Offer rashly ventured to stay with us this year. He probably thought we were exaggerating the snoring but I was impressed that he weathered the storm and stayed with us. By the way, Joe is a real workhorse and did much more than his own share of kitchen duties

One of the best time for me at Harmony is just conversing with old and new friends in the dining hall. This year I got to turn an acquaintance into a friend with one of those conversations where you don't take any notice of the passage of time. I also taped some great new songs to learn, traded some recordings and even sold a few of my own CDs.


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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Mark Cohen
Date: 03 Jan 01 - 07:24 PM

Ooooohhhhh, I'm wistful and envious, and happy everybody had such a great time and that Faith and Valentine and Ray and Debby and all were there. Too many expensive trips to the Mainland to see my 6-year-old daughter in Colorado, and the possibility of her being here the last week in December (she wasn't) kept me away this year. NEXT year, I will make an extra special effort to be there. Gotta sing rounds with Lani Herrmann et al, and play backup guitar for the old-time fiddlers, and sing lush harmonies with fifty people around a big stone fireplace, and learn more lawyer jokes at the Jestival (was Redmond there?), and hear Faith's songs yet again, and swap stories over Debby's wonderful food, and.....and.....and......

Maybe we can do it in Hawaii next year, whaddya say, folks? Nah, guess not...OK, I'll be there!


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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Joe Offer
Date: 03 Jan 01 - 08:34 PM

Hi, Mark - nope, Valentine Doyle didn't make it this year - that was LAST year's message you read above. I don't know about Redmond and the Jestival. All I know is that Radriano told some really obnoxious jokes. He seems to like to hear people groan.
-Joe Offer-

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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: Susan A-R
Date: 03 Jan 01 - 10:25 PM

Dates for next year??

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Subject: RE: Camp Harmony???
From: radriano
Date: 09 Jan 01 - 11:10 AM

Why Joe, I thought all my jokes were good clean healthy fun.

Redmond O'Colonies (formerly O'Connell) usually runs the joke workshop (Jestival) at Camp Harmony. He was absent this year and no one took up the Jester mantle. Now it's true that I like the groans but Redmond LOVES the groans.


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