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Tell us about your town...and the music.

Rick Fielding 14 Dec 00 - 06:44 PM
CarolC 14 Dec 00 - 07:22 PM
InOBU 14 Dec 00 - 07:23 PM
Ebbie 14 Dec 00 - 08:06 PM
Jon Freeman 14 Dec 00 - 08:45 PM
Ebbie 14 Dec 00 - 08:51 PM
Jon Freeman 14 Dec 00 - 09:12 PM
Ebbie 14 Dec 00 - 09:36 PM
Matt_R 14 Dec 00 - 09:49 PM
Jon Freeman 14 Dec 00 - 09:59 PM
MMario 14 Dec 00 - 10:11 PM
CarolC 15 Dec 00 - 02:10 AM
DonMeixner 15 Dec 00 - 02:53 AM
McGrath of Harlow 15 Dec 00 - 06:38 AM
mkebenn 15 Dec 00 - 06:59 AM
Gervase 15 Dec 00 - 07:44 AM
Naemanson 15 Dec 00 - 08:36 AM
Jimmy C 15 Dec 00 - 09:04 AM
Bagpuss 15 Dec 00 - 09:27 AM
Mooh 15 Dec 00 - 09:32 AM
Little Neophyte 15 Dec 00 - 09:34 AM
folk1234 15 Dec 00 - 09:36 AM
Lepus Rex 15 Dec 00 - 10:50 AM
Lepus Rex 15 Dec 00 - 10:52 AM
simon-pierre 15 Dec 00 - 12:03 PM
mousethief 15 Dec 00 - 12:10 PM
Mrrzy 15 Dec 00 - 12:15 PM
Rick Fielding 15 Dec 00 - 12:28 PM
SINSULL 15 Dec 00 - 12:34 PM
Allan C. 15 Dec 00 - 01:15 PM
Peg 15 Dec 00 - 02:29 PM
Jon Freeman 15 Dec 00 - 08:14 PM
Bill D 15 Dec 00 - 09:42 PM
CamiSu 16 Dec 00 - 10:38 AM
Rick Fielding 16 Dec 00 - 11:21 AM
John Hardly 16 Dec 00 - 04:09 PM
Doctor John 16 Dec 00 - 04:53 PM
John P 16 Dec 00 - 06:23 PM
catspaw49 16 Dec 00 - 07:32 PM
Caitrin 16 Dec 00 - 07:38 PM
Matt_R 16 Dec 00 - 08:06 PM
Caitrin 16 Dec 00 - 08:30 PM
Mary in Kentucky 16 Dec 00 - 08:57 PM
catspaw49 16 Dec 00 - 09:18 PM
R! 16 Dec 00 - 09:35 PM
Matt_R 16 Dec 00 - 09:38 PM
Caitrin 16 Dec 00 - 09:44 PM
Matt_R 16 Dec 00 - 09:49 PM
Hotspur 16 Dec 00 - 10:16 PM
Jon Freeman 16 Dec 00 - 10:34 PM
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Subject: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 06:44 PM

Hi. I have no idea whether this will fly or not, but it's predicated on the "Seth, tell us about China" thread. It occurs to me that with all the travelling I've done, rarely have I got a chance to REALLY get to know a town or a city. I've lived in Montreal (18 years), New York (6 months), London ('bout a year), New Orleans (3 months), Amsterdam (4 months) and Toronto (the rest of the time). I think I have some kind of sense of these places, but my memories of the rest of my travels are usually the inside of a performance place.. and maybe a couple of restaurants and a music store. Rarely time for anything else. Thought it might be fun if some people wanted to share descriptions of their home towns (or cities).

Scarborough, Ontario.

It's a pretty big suburb of Toronto. Lotsa parks, clubs, stores theatres etc. We live next to Lake Ontario near an are called "the Beach". Scarborough was in the past called "the blue collar" suburb, but much of it seems pretty affluent to me (we ain't!). About five minutes away are "the Bluffs" which are quite impressive. Several miles of very high cliffs (with houses built right to the edge (scary!) There's a great deal of parkland and woods, which encourages ya to go right to the edge of the bluffs and look out over the lake. At least twice every summer the fire dept. has to rescue some kid who got stoned and fell down to the rocks below. Amazingly they rarely kill themselves (just break about 50 bones.) When the weather's calm we can just barely see Watertown New York on the the other side of the lake.

Our #1 concert venue is the Acoustic Harvest Folk Club, and I'm five minutes away from the 12th Fret Music store where I spend ALL my money! Quite a friendly place, and I'm pretty pleased I ended up here. Oh, and we truly lucked out with the houses on either side of us. Great neighbours. But ohhhh these winters....I've shoveled snow three times this week!

Rick


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: CarolC
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 07:22 PM

Shepherdstown, West Virginia, U.S.A.,

Beautiful, small college town. No traffic lights within town limits, just a few four-way stop signs. Beautiful farmland and Civil War historic sites all around. Two (very small) mountain ranges within sight of parts of town.

Two excellent hammered dulcimer festivals each year. Several different concert series that run throughout the year. Performances by world class local talent as well as musicians from around the world, almost every week throughout the year.

An orchestra, several chamber ensembles, The Contemporary American Theater Festival in the summer, and several art galleries.

Year round contra dances and various other kinds of dance including belly dancing and swing dance.

Temperate climate, but a bit hot and humid in the summer.

The only things missing that I would love are the ocean, and more accordions. (And better municipal water.)

Carol


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: InOBU
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 07:23 PM

New York City - it sucks, Larry


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Ebbie
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 08:06 PM

WILD SPIRIT ("Ebbie"1991)

Traveled north from Seattle in the year of '88
In search of "Alaska" and praying I wasn't too late.
I stopped in Juneau on my way through the great Inside;
Fell in love with the city - it was the end of my ride.

Chorus:
Wild Spirit, Wild Spirit, O Juneau, I sing of thee!
Thy breath is the wind, thy home is the mountains and sea,
Thy soul is the people who choose to live here with love.
Wild Spirit, unfettered but by high sky above!

There is no railroad and we have just one double-lane.
(When you hear a semi, it's just a tiny floatplane)
With guitars and fiddles we sing away our cares,
Sweet music escaping into the tangy air.

We're bankers and hippies and government workers here.
We're fishers and teachers and pilots of water and air.
And great artists and writers- we all make this our home
In the whistlingest, huggingest, happiest town I've known!

Juneau, Alaska, 46 miles long, one mile wide. 7-day Folk Festival; opera, symphony, brass marching band, jazz and classics festival, lots of folk, country, blues, Irish/Gaelic bands; recording studios, LOTS of homemade music; 5 levels of live theatre.

I like it here. :)

Ebbie


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 08:45 PM

Llandudno is a seaside resort on the North West Coast of Wales. It's name means The church of St Tudno, a 6th century saint. Although Llandudno is known as a seaside town, settlements have existed on the Great Orme since the Bronze Age where what are claimed to be the worlds largest pre-historic mines can be visited.

Llandudno was a small fishing and mining community until 1854 when Edward Mostyn, a prominent landowner, was given control of developing the land. With the help of architect Owen Williams, this village was designed to become a seaside resort that appealed to the Victorians.

Llandudno boast the longest cable car in the United Kingdom as well as a tramway leading up to summit of the Great Orme which was completed in 1902. Perhaps one of the more curious features of Llandudno is the location of the lifeboat station which is, believe it or not, in the middle of the town as Llandudno has 2 shores and it was decided to locate it where it could reach both shores with equal speed. I suspect that many tourists are amused at the site of the lifeboat being towed through the town to be launched.

Like all the resorts on the North Wales coast, Llandudno is past its heyday as more and more people choose to take their holidays abroad but unlike some of the others, Llandudno has managed to retain its Victorian attraction.

Llandudno may still have one folk music venue left which sadly degenerated into a beginners (with no interest in improving) session but the town of Conwy which is about five miles away does have a thriving folk club and one regular session per week and hosts the annual North Wales Bluegrass festival.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Ebbie
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 08:51 PM

Jon, that's a great story about Llandudno's lifeboat station. I very much enjoy non-harmful eccentricity. What is the current year 'round population of the town?

Ebbie


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 09:12 PM

Ebbie, I have found these figures. Llandudno has a residential population of 20,000 and it can accommodate over 25,000 visitors.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Ebbie
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 09:36 PM

Oooh, Jon. Juneau has 30,000 people and on some days has 10,000 day visitors (They most all leave around midnight on the cruise ships). Most of them roam the (narrow) sidewalks and shops in the downtown section which has a very small proportion of our population, which means it's very crowded indeed.

But perhaps you mean that your 'visitors' have summer homes there?

Ebbie


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Matt_R
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 09:49 PM

Greenville, NC.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 09:59 PM

Ebbie, I can not vouch for the accuracy of the figures I quoted but the whole of the sea front consists of hotels and their are hotels and guest houses on many of the streets so I would guess that it is quite possible that Llandudno is capable of accomodating more visitors than its resident population. I doubt that there are many summer homes in the town itself.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: MMario
Date: 14 Dec 00 - 10:11 PM

ver succinct matt.

Sandwich Mass is still "home" - while I was growing up permanent population around 2500, summer population around 20,000 PLUS tourists. Much larger now, they actually have more then one stop light!

"Quaint" New England village, over 300 years old; settled by the "10 men from Saugus"; home in its heydey (late 1800's)to the Boston and Sandwich Glass Company, famous for its pressed glass and golden ruby glass, "dolphin" candlesticks and cup plates.

Also home to the (now defunt) Yesteryears doll museam that had the largest collection of Japanese Imperial dolls outside of Japan, The Hoxie House (oldest existing house on cape cod) the Dexter Grist Mill (likewise restored - but only 2nd oldest) and Heritage Plantation, itself home of an antique car collection and the Dexter Rhodendrons hybrids,plus a restored windmill, a restored carousel, an art museum, and a craft museum.

Had the distinction while I was growing up of having one of the largest libraries in Massachusetts when figured books per capita; and (suppossedly) the second purest municipal water supply in the country. (I never did learn where it was that was suppossed to have had the purest)


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: CarolC
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 02:10 AM

Hey, MMario...

When I was a kid, I used to spend parts of my summers in Wellfleet. I love cape cod. I understand it's gotten pretty overpopulated, now, though.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: DonMeixner
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 02:53 AM

Jordan,NY is a canal town typical of many of the canal towns that grew up along the Erie canal in the 1800. Jordan's population numbers haven't changed to any great extent, barring war or disease, since 1845. And it is today about 1500 people.

The canal is a primary land mark in our area. Limestone walls creat the towpath side of the canal. The limestone forms a wall that runs the length of New York state from east to west. Sometimes, as in Jordan, the ancient canals locks and aquaducts are still visable. The aquaducts are elegant arches that allow the canal to pass over waterways and gullys and remain at a constant level. Top speed allowed on the canal was less that 5 miles an hour.

The music in town is usually a series of summer concerts held in the canal park where the accoustics are very special. Local artists, community bands, and out'o'towners are welcome to perform. Through the Fall winter and spring we have a monthly open mic at the Library. Usually an audience of musicians playing for musicians but lately more people are there just to listen.

My son Gregory has thrilled me by performing with a small trio at the last two open mics. Perhaps a major talent has just burst upon the scene.

Don


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 06:38 AM

Here's a song about Harlow, on the Essex Herts border - which is a place we may sometimes be rude about ourselves, but God help the poor bastard from outside who comes here and starts sneering. (A bit like most places in that, really.)

Here's the first verse anyway.

When I first came to Harlow,
it was muddy and grey, it was work brought me here,
I thought "I'll never stay", and at times, I could tell
you that God only knows how I stuck it in Harlow,
where the Stort River flows. We've been planted out here ,
and now, do what we may, there are plenty of people
who'd wish us away, why they'll sniff and they'll sneer,
and they'll look down their nose when the talk turns to Harlow,
where the Stort River flows. For the people in Harlow
live close to the ground and there aren't many palaces
here to be found, and the houses are small,
and the gardens are neat, and there's children in Harlow
still play in the street.

(cho)And here on our border
we're out on our own, and if you don't like us,
well, just leave us alone. In our wild woods and gardens
you'll find a red rose, in the green heart of Harlow,
where the Stort River flows.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: mkebenn
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 06:59 AM

East Aurora, New York. Village of about 10,000 in the Western part of the state. I live in the house built by my great grandfather in 1906. We made national news in '98 by refusing to let Wallmart build one of their "big boxes" in our midst. They tried again this year, whupped 'em again. Home to Fisher Price toys, Moog valve, and Elbert Hubbard's Roycroft artist's commune. Music at the coffee shop my wife works at. Hope to play myself after the holidays. Mike Bennett P.S. Don, looks like we're gonna excavate and rebuild the western commercial slip at this end of the canal{Buffalo} and make a park out of it..Great Idea!


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Gervase
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 07:44 AM

London. 'Nuff said - but after years of moaning about the place being a musical desert I got off my arse and started looking, and found there was life in the old tart yet (even if most of the life is injected by a handful of tireless and unsung stalwarts like Martin Nail and Gerry Milne - Gawd bless 'em).
Most weeks I go along to Sharp's in the bowels of Cecil Sharp House, where there's a very friendly and eclectic club running. This week we had Dave Webber and Anni Fentiman, with Johnny Collins just happening to turn up to support the choruses, resulting in a magical evening marred only by the fact that one of London's leading showbiz PR companies had booked the adjoining room for a Christmas party (for a laugh, ha ha, as Peter Sarsted would have put it), which brought the bizarre sight of mega-promoter Harvey Goldsmith and his acolytes hogging the bar surrounded by PR bimbettes in party finery while the Sharp's regulars struggled to get through for a pint of IPA. As one said: "It's like a tarts and vicars party, only with no vicars!"
What made it the more galling is that, for all their fame in the folk world, Dave and Anni can't afford to be full-time musicians - relying on the goodwill of the London Borough of Ealing to release Dave for their tours and gigs - yet here were some of the biggest movers and shakers in the music business in an adjoining room and they apparently couldn't give a toss. Grr. End of rant - but that's London for you.
Then there's Islington, which I don't go to as often as I should, but which puts on some superb acts and, for all its wanderings, has always seemed to be what a folk club should be - and out in the suburbs are a fair number of good clubs that I just don't get the time to see.
It has to be said, though that London - particualy central London - isn't a folk-friendly area. There's any number of venues showing live music, some of them deservedly legendary: Ronnie Scotts, the 100 Club, the 606, the King's Head - but for those of us who like to make our own music pickings can be slender. At weekends I' in rural Hertfordshire, where there's a heck of a lot more happening (sadly most of it during the week when I'm stuck in town) - most of it detailed on Kevin McGrath's excellent website.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Naemanson
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 08:36 AM

Bath, Maine, USA

Bath is an industrial town. The major industry is shipbuilding and has been so for the last 300 years. Up until this century shipyards lined the river but now we are down to just one, Bath Iron Works. They build Navy ships exclusively.

Bath is a quaint little city (and it does have a city government with a mayor and council and all) with brick buildings full of antique shops, diners, banks, department stores, etc.

Musically we are very lucky. As most of you know from my previous posts there is the Chocolate Church Arts Center established in an old Episcopalian Church on the corner of Washington Street and Center Street. The church is painted dark chocolate brown. The venue runs the full range from folk, through rock, to classical music. On its stage I have seen magicians, Maori tribal dancers, and wonderful performances by such artists as Livingston Taylor, Christine Lavin, Connie Dover, Jez Lowe, The Battlefield Band, Schooner Fare, Artisan, Patrick Ball, Tanglefoot, etc. And these are only the ones I went to see. The church also hosts and produces concerts and plays by a full range of performers and troupes.

Within the local area are two coffeehouses, the Mocha Café, affiliated with the Chocolate Church, and the Side Door Coffeehouse, affiliated with the Unitarian Church in Brunswick (the neighboring town).

Near us, in Brunswick, is Thomas Point Beach. There are three festivals there every summer. The Maine Arts Festival features Maine performers and artists with every form of music imaginable. The bluegrass festival is specialized and very well attended. And then there are the annual Scottish games.

Additionally there are local performers who schedule themselves into concerts at various churches and other venues. We have a very active music scene here.

Unfortunately Bath-Brunswick is not really very well stocked in music stores. However, just up the coast are some very well known luthiers including Nick Appolonio who built Gordon Bok's guitars. I am proud to number a few very talented luthiers among my friends.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Jimmy C
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 09:04 AM

Whitby, Ontario. A nice quiet litlw place if about 72,000 inhabitants on the edge of Lake Ontario, about a 20 minute drive east of Scarborough where Rick is living. Toronto to the west of here with Montreall about 4 hours to the east. Not much folk music around. Lots of car dealerships on the main street. We have a Wal-Mart store of course along with Home Depot, Canadian tire and The like etc. General Motors factories all around in the adjoining town (Oshawa). Good fishing and hunting within 30 minutes in any direction.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Bagpuss
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 09:27 AM

Starting with my home town - Gateshead. Home of The Angel of the North, the Metrocentre and not much else. However it is just across the river from the wonderful city of Newcastle. Excellent shopping, pubs and wildlife (see the Bigg Market on a friday might). The most loyal football fans in the world and the best atmosphere a city can have. And great folk music too. Home of Folkworks - my school ceilidh band was one of the very first projects it undertook - and I wouldn't be here without it. At the time I didn't realise how priviliged we were to have the likes of Alistair Anderson, Chuck Fleming et al coming to our school every week to teach us.

I love the traditional music from the North eastern parts too. Full of octave leaps - so the songs are very hard to sing sometimes!

Bagpuss


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Mooh
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 09:32 AM

Goderich Ontario Canada, about 2 1/2 hours from Rick. I envy Rick his access to the 12th Fret music store, for out here on the shore of Lake Huron we've only one pathetic excuse for a music store. (It's a small market, granted, but the store itself is unkempt, unimaginitively stocked, irregularly open, oh-oh, I'd better watch my blood pressure...) This is also radio wasteland, the CBC being the only station of quality available. Those complaints aside, it is a lovely place to live with lots of other distractions. Of the 7500 or so souls here, there are few who would qualify as undesirables, and many who give their heart and soul to the good-naturedness of the place. Musically, there are few live venues except a very good monthly coffee house, and the annual Goderich Celtic Roots Festival, and Celtic College. A couple of bars have some live entertainment sometimes, but it's usually too pop for my tastes. Music is promoted with several good choirs, including a children's choir, a town band, a pipe band, and recently the Legion has been sponsoring a semi-regular jam night (though it seems to be loosing the attention of young folks). Lots of nice parks and a great waterfront, super architecture, town square, decent shopping for anything except music, river and lake fishing, cottaging, boating, camping etc...

Lots of music instruction here too, including myself.

Closer to the time I'll post details of the Celtic Festival and College.

Mooh.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Little Neophyte
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 09:34 AM

Great thread Rick
Its interesting, Rick and I live in the same city yet at times it feels like two different worlds.
I live central in town in an area called Forest Hill where you have to put a down deposit on the fruits at the fruit & vegetable market. Lots of stores but I feel like I'm shopping on Sax Fifth Avenue when I window shop. I'd say its the "mink collar" part of town. About five minutes away you will find a Starbucks or Second cup on every other block. If you meet someone for coffee you better give them a street address. There are several miles of very affluent homes, houses built right on the edge of outrageous costs. There's a great deal of parkland and woods where nannies walk the pedigree dogs.

Me, I live in an apartment building. Kind of fun living around the Rich & Famous. But personally I head over to Rick's end of town for the music and good times.

Bonnie


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: folk1234
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 09:36 AM

Well, Ada, OK is where we live now.

Music in Ada consists of Christian Pop, Christian Country, Christian Rock, and Pop Country. Anything Garth and his many clones does is "'bout a good as it done can get". For the bar-room crowd there's tough Country Rock, and for the old-timers there's Country Swing and Country Bar-room swing - they call it folk music. No NPR, unless you have a good antenna. There are also 96 churches, all Christian, for a population of 16,000. Did I tell you yet that there is alot of Christian Music here?

Fortunately for us OK City, 85 miles to the Northwest, is more diverse. There we have a wonderful variety of folk music at the Oklahoma City Traditional Music Association. Click here for octma.org

Please don't misunderstand me. There's much to like about Ada, but their lack of diversity and music tastes are not among our favorite things.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Lepus Rex
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 10:50 AM

Hmm, is there even music in North Branch, MN? I wouldn't know. I don't really mix with the local Republican-types. I've got to drive all the way down to Minneapolis to hear any live music (or St.Paul, or up to Duluth).

For radio, it's not bad. I can get both RadioK from the U of M, and KVSC from St.Cloud State, and some jazz station I can stand about 50% of the time. But I mostly listen to Mn Public Radio. My favourite radio station, KFAI, never comes in up here, so I only listen to it when I'm driving around... So I guess that one doesn't count. :)

---Lepus Rex


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Lepus Rex
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 10:52 AM

Oops, didn't link MPR... :)

---Lepus Rex


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: simon-pierre
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 12:03 PM

Québec City, QC

A French-speaking city, and so I do.

Gets overwhelmed by tourists six months a year, from April to October, and by snow the other six months. A nice place, though, something european in the architecture and nice places to visit, especially the bars. Don't get fooled by the postal card, there's a city behind that darn Chateau Frontenac.

The music scene is very dynamic, especially for youngs singer/songwriter and somewhat jazz musicians, even if they have to move to Montréal if they want a serious career. I mean, they don't earn a penny, but they're really good. Lots of blues shows too. However, for american folk music, there's absolutely nothing. My favorite record store (dedicated to blues) had closed this summer. The biggest ones are Archambault recordstores, owned by Péladeau Jr, who also owns the half of the province. Recently, they opened a small folk section, so I can buy Folkways records at twice the price, but they still don't know Folk-Legacy.

I ran last year the only radio show dedicated to folk music, on CKIA, but I got tired of that metal music before and after my show.

Next april, we will welcome the Sommet des Amériques, a round of negociation of ZLEA (sorry for the french; go to www.cmaq.net).We will be very pleased to meet you if you want to join to protest.

Simon-Pierre


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: mousethief
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 12:10 PM

Sumner, Washington. Population 4,000. Sits in a low valley between two high ridges. Sleepy little bedroom community for the most part; some warehouses just north of downtown, and then miles of sod farms north of that.

First platted in the late 1800's. Original home of Whitman College, which later moved to Walla Walla.

A very community-oriented town. Funky little parades and street fairs draw out virtually the whole population, as well as out-of-town visitors.

Outdoor music at the gazebo friday nights during the summer.

Always a music stage at the street fairs.

Open mic every Wednesday through Saturday night at the Acoustic Cafe. Acoustic here is something of a misnomer; although I've yet to hear an electric guitar there, electric basses are in use as well as amplified voices and those acoustic guitars with the built-in pre-amps.

Occasionally singing at A Good Book Cafe and Bookstore, just about half a block away from the Acoustic Cafe on Main Street.

Alex


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Mrrzy
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 12:15 PM

NOW: Charlottesville, VA. Very college town, birthplace of the Dave Matthews Band (OK, not folk, but it is still music), not enough folk around for my taste but lots of folksy people. Fridays throughout the summer months we have a live outdoor concert at an amphitheater at one end of a large pedestrian mall - lots of alternative lifestyles in evidence, tie-dye and beards there, even though the music ranges from swing to pop through Baaba Seth. Lots of places to go hear music if you don't want to hear anything else for a while... not so many of the coffee-house style I got used to in college, when I was in the Boston area. There are three of us 'catters here, since I still count Alan C even though he's in WVa most of the time...

HOME-town = Abidjan, Ivory Coast, (ex-)French West Africa. I like a lot of African music now, I wish I had when I still lived there. One of my favorites is Daouda Kone, from upcountry somewhere, because he sings songs that remind me of Irish music, not the music of course, but he mentions neighborhoods and areas a lot, and sings about kind of normal "situations" like the boss' wife wanting to sleep with him and so on. Irish songs almost inevitably have some geographical reference, so that people listening can have a good "visual" - and Daouda Kone does that a lot. Plus he sings in regular French, African French, and in various African languages.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 12:28 PM

Thanks so much to the folks who are taking the time to let us know about their turf. I'm really enjoying this, and making some mental notes about some of my future travels. Great little portraits.

If I can add a bit to Scarborough Ontario. Truth is, that like a lot of others I used to call it "Scarberia", and relished the fact that I always lived "Downtown", where it was "happening". Well, "happening" never lasts, it's just the beginning of complete commercialization. I used to live in the heart of a district called "Yorkville" which was chock full of folk music, hippies, coffee houses and quaint dwellings. Today it is so chic and so expensive that only the young, very wealthy, and designer-drugged inhabit it. I never figured that with my political views, and "downtown prejudices" I could ever feel at home in Blue collar arch-conservative Scarborough. Boy was I wrong. People talk to each other on the streets here, and there are attitudes of every stripe. Works fine for me, at this stage of my life.

I have to mention one of the best things about living here. Our neighbour "Z". She's an amazing lady. Artsy, beautiful, tough as nails, caring,...and constantly compliments Heather on her gardening efforts! Man, when you've got good neighbours, you've got it made.

Rick


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: SINSULL
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 12:34 PM

Jackson Heights, one of the most ethnically diverse communities in the country. We all share the joy of huge speakers installed in trunks of cars enabling the owner to blast his choice of music (and I use the term loosely) throughout several city blocks of neighbors.
Of course we also have several symphonies, more than a few radio stations, one or two clubs, coffee houses, Irish bars,...


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Subject: Old Fields, West Virginia
From: Allan C.
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 01:15 PM

Old Fields, West Virginia , (aka Oldfields,) situated in Hardy County, is little more than a small intersection of roads. Its location was originally marked by only a small store and tiny church. To find Old Fields on a map, the easiest thing to do is to locate Washington, D.C. and then look just a bit more than 100 miles to the west. In recent years the number of non-residential structures have expanded to include a new church, an elementary school and a post office. Until two years ago the post office was contained within the store. I am not sure of the official population of Old Fields. I would guess it to be less than 25. However, the post office serves those folks who live within about a ten mile radius.

A few centuries ago, Lord Fairfax gifted his daughter's new husband, Issac Van Meter, with land that now comprises Hardy County as well as two adjacent counties. Van Meter's grave can be found at the churchyard of the tiny wooden church at Old Fields. The South Fork of the Potomac River is a short walk southward from the churchyard. A favorite canoeing run, known as The Trough, begins there.

The Trough

A large, brick house was built in 1793 within view of the Old Fields store. It is called Willow Wall, the original owner of which owned thousands of acres of surrounding "bottom land". One of my favorite stories about that property involves a structure that was built there. The owner offered to build a small chapel for his slaves. The slaves, having learned that the devil lurked in dark corners, asked that the building be without corners. The round structure was used as a chapel and later as a barn until just a few years ago when it finally caved in.

The nearest "large" town is Moorefield, which has a population of approximately 2,148. While West Virginia was considered to be a part of the Union during the Civil War, Moorefield, and the surrounding areas remained loyal to the Confederacy. A significant battle was lost here by the Union that resulted in disabling what became known as The Valley Campaign. During that time, area people hid their valuables within the hollow columns of the Mullan Hotel.

Old Fields is surrounded on all sides by farmland.

A nearby farm

I am not certain of the statistics, but I am fairly certain that the area produces more poultry, (both chickens and turkeys,) than any other area in the state. There is a processing plant in Moorefield that supplies frozen, pre-cooked chicken to such companies as Golden Skillet, Dairy Queen (go figure!) and even KFC as well as some of the TV dinner companies. Most of the people who live in this area are involved in this industry by one means or another. Many of the farms around Old Fields grow grain crops to feed the poultry population.

Mom's 200 acre farm has been among the exceptions. For the past thirty years it has been used for the raising of cattle. While there is plenty of land devoted to pasture and hayfields, the land is only about 25 percent cleared. The rest remains wonderfully wooded and supplies me with plenty of places to wander. From the house we can see Trough Mountain to the east, Chert Mountain to the north (upon which there is an apple orchard where I once worked,) and Coal Mountain to the southwest. Coal Mountain is the home of a mysterious light which has appeared from time to time for nearly a hundred years. The farm is in what is known by the locals as White Oak Flats, or more simply, The Flats. A short walk to the barn and back will quickly remind you of what a misnomer that is.

The local radio station plays country music for the most part with the occasional mix of new popular stuff and a wee bit of bluegrass. The PBS radio station originating in Harrisonburg, Virginia (75 miles away) devotes about three hours per week to either Celtic or bluegrass music.

Harrisonburg has the nearest venue for the possibility of hearing some traditional music. Since my move to Old Fields, I have made the trip to H'burg to see The Seldom Scene and Michael Martin Murphey at a small theater there.

With the help of my friend, David C., I have been able to locate a couple of local people with whom David and I jam from time to time. I am trying to persuade them to become members or to at least come to the Getaway next year.

So far, three 'Catters have visited here: David C., Bill Sables, and Moonjen. One other is planning to visit in the near future. I hope that if any of you find yourselves in the area, you will consider a stop in beautiful Old Fields, West Virginia.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Peg
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 02:29 PM

Naemanson, my boss lives in Bath, Maine!

Nice to hear from all you western NYers (residents of the Southern Tier, soem of you). I am from Elmira.

I now reside in Boston, where there are more Irish sessiuns than you can shake a stick at. Still I can't manage to put a band together that stays together...most of the Celtic groups wanna play mostly instrumentals or want an Irish vocalist...or maybe I need better luck.

I can vouch for Jon Freeman's descriptions of Llandudno; absolutely charming place.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 08:14 PM

Peg, maybe one day I will meet you.

Is it just me or am I right in thinking that this little corner of Wales has so much beauty: the seaside at Llanduno, 5 minutes drive then (IMO) best castle in Wales and the quayside in Conwy and in another 15 minutes, you are into a land of mountains and lakes (OK not as big as othe countries but nice)?

BTW, if anyone is daft enough to come to this part of the world and is even more daft and would like to join me for a drink, my phone number is (from the UK) 01492 877299 and my email address is jonbanjo@freeuk.com. I thinkI have said this before but a floor to crash on if needed is part of the deal.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Bill D
Date: 15 Dec 00 - 09:42 PM

Washington DC, USA...(well, I live in suburb just north...but...)..Metro DC area is huge, and has almost ANY kind of music that you'd want. Amazing ethnic diversity, and lots of support by various embassies for some of it. We can hear Bluegrass, Folk, Irish, Chinese, Indonesian Galmalan, classical, Ugandan(just had a program last week!)...etc...why, we even had some damn Canadian named "Fielding" once..*grin*

and if music is not all you want, you can run down to hear arguments at the Supreme Court or watch presidental motorcades

all this is available IF you can cope with the traffic and stresses of getting to it...


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: CamiSu
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 10:38 AM

Fairlee, Vt. Population, 900 and some in the winter, maybe twice or three times that many in the summer. (We have a nice lake and part of another. LOTS of summer camps!) I have a hard time getting out so I never got to the open mikes at the Third Rail. Contra dances about 20 miles down the road. Guitar playing and singing in the living room.

Joseph Stallsmith has been our tireless impresario for the folk world south of our house and Chris Jones did it, north. Both of them are inactive for various reasons, right now. I have not been much help.

But I do love living here. I can find dark.

CamiSu


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 11:21 AM

Other than being seriously miserable from the flu on my last visit to Washington (as Bill would remember) I LOVE the town. Joe Hickerson was our unofficial tour guide and even bought us a drink in the establishment frequented by Monica Lewinsky! Now THAT'S Folk music!

Jon you MAY get some visitors. Heather visited your town many years ago and was raving about it when she read your first post. I'm curious now.

Rick


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: John Hardly
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 04:09 PM

I'm in diminutive Warsaw, IN, Cultural capitol of Indiana. When you think small mid-western town, a picture of Warsaw is what you're looking at in that bubble that appears over your head. Cornfields to the south, Glacier lakes to the north--water skiing and ice fishing (not simultaneously). Basketball games in the town parks with former big-ten players, small college players and high-school stars. Weekend concerts in the park all summer, one weekend a blues fest the next bluegrass, rock, om pah, almost anything.

It is the home of (no kidding) one of the finest plectrum and tenor banjo players in the country (He was even an Elderly Instruments "Hot Pick") Ric Lovelady--incredible musician--has taught classical guitar at the local college for 25 years (took lessons from Parkening), and plays the most beautiful chromatic harmonica.

Close enough to attend concerts at two of the finest folk/acoustic music venues in the mid-west--LVD's and Front Porch Music. Between the two of those I've seen the likes of Pat Donohue, John Hartford, Martin Simpson, Catfish Keith, Cheryl Wheeler,and on, and on... Small enough venues that I'm acquainted with the owners and there's never more than 50 others at the concerts.

John


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Doctor John
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 04:53 PM

Exbourne, Devon. One pub (few customers); two churches, one school, one post office (sometimes). One village hall: Old Rope String Band played there once. Good people Er...that's it. Dr John
PS Jez Lowe & Jake Walton played for our wedding last year but that was in the next village (no pub, one church, no village hall, no post office, great farm house food but Noel Edmunds)
..and lots of Devon Banks. Like driving in a permanent tunnel with the lid off.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: John P
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 06:23 PM

Seattle, WA -- It's a big city, so we get all the expected cultural/ethnic diversity. Lots of folk music of all types: Irish, blues, Balkan, bluegrass, old-time, French, Cajun, Indian, Native American, you name it. One of the jokes is that you can't throw a microbrew across the room without hitting a singer-songwriter. Several pubs have folk music on the weekends. There are lots of bookstores and cafes that have music on a regular basis. The Folklore Society puts on concerts once or twice a week. It is possible to go to some kind of folk dance several nights a week -- contras, squares, French, English Country, Balkan, etc. There is a real folk community here, or perhaps I should say several communities that intersect in various and interesting ways.

I'm fortunate enough to work at Dusty Strings, a company that builds folk harps and hammered dulcimers and operates the region's largest acoustic music store, so I am immersed in musical things most of the time. Most of the musicians in the city wander in from time to time, and many of those who are in town for a concert drop by. I'd love to meet any Mudcatters who visit Seattle (or live here!). Drop by the store and ask for me and tell whoever you talk to that you are from Mudcat.

John Peekstok


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: catspaw49
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 07:32 PM

Well...............

Columbus, Ohio, about 45 miles away is the state capitol and the biggest college town in the United States. Known as Cowtown and Whitebread City its cultural roots were mixed early on and although it is ethnically diverse, its not nearly as much so as its sisters, Cincinnati and Cleveland. Columbus grew on government and "clean" industry and at the center of a large flatland farming region......hence the Cowtown and Whitebread City monikers. And it is the biggest college town you'll find, surrounding the largest main campus that houses the most students of any university in the states, that being Ohio State. In the 60's and 70's there was a small but decent folk scene here, but now it is mainly gone. A few smallish societies and dulcimer clubs being about all that's left of the traddie type thing. There are a couple of excellent Irish venues as well as a huge Filk festival, but that not being my interest, well............Most others are now singer/songwriter/navel contemplator/folkrock places. Last year a pickup group of old farts began to play on the streets and a few smaller bars and the like and next summer I plan on taking up an invite from one of them, an old friend, to join in now and again.

NOW.....Where we live in Bremen..........Bremen is a tiny village about 4 blocks long by 3 blocks wide, in the foothills about 45 miles southeast of Columbus. We have 12 tree lined streets (still mainly brick), a few stop signs, no traffic lights, and we roll up the sidewalks each evening at 9 PM. The "Hot Stove Boys" gather at a Shoot and Scoot gas station (The Bremen Quik Stop) and convenience store every morning and solve the worlds problems. People walk and ride bikes and sit on the front porches on summer evenings. I'm kind of viewed as a bit weird obviously, but the old conservative town enjoys the difference even so. I walk into the post office and Harold, the postmaster asks, "Hey Pat, what was in the package from Australia?" In the bank everyone knows all the details of my our life and the girls always ask about the kids by name. WE have a piddlin' little Oktoberfest where they know I can be called on to entertain with a few tunes while the judges vote on "Little Miss Bremen." Holiday decorations are big deals here and at Halloween, we get 350 or more kids trick or treating.

I grew up in a suburb of Columbus from age 10, but was born in a little town in east Ohio much like this one. In many ways Bremen is a throwback to the 40's and 50's and a very safe and comfortable place to live. Karen grew up in Atlanta and I have lived in Chicago, Atlanta, Nashville, Chattanooga, Charlotte, and Cincinnati. When we decided to move here, we took all the pain in the ass stuff in stride.....lousy phone service, 50 miles from anywhere, etc. because its worth it in many ways. I have no idea where my house keys are for instance, haven't used one in ten years. When a new couple from the "big city" was looking at a home across the street, they asked a neighbor about what security system they used and what others had. Old Joe explained that its the Bremen system where we all watch out some for each other. It won't last I know, but for now, the Bremen System is still working.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Caitrin
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 07:38 PM

I'm in Asheville, NC, USA. It's a small city of about 50,000 people, a rather liberal town in the Blue Ridge Mountains. There's music all over the place, lots of it traditional. At my university, we've gotten everything from bagpipers to bluegrass ensembles appearing randomly on the quad. Several coffeehouses and bars in town are welcoming of bluegrass and blues, and there are frequent free shows of beginning bands (some of which are better than others.) Boone (a smaller town not far from A'ville) has a lot of neat music, as well. For instance, I just went to the Doc Watson festival there this summer, which was muchly cool. Asheville's a really fun town to be in, musically. I love the place!


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Matt_R
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 08:06 PM

Long time no see, Caitrin. Good to hear from you again.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Caitrin
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 08:30 PM

Thanks, Matt...having survived a summer of theater work at summer stock and a semester of college, it's good to be back!


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 08:57 PM

Hi Caitrin, I did a double-take when I saw your name. Welcome back.

Mary


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: catspaw49
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 09:18 PM

Hi Caits and a welcome back from me too. We were in Boon last summer again and I thought of you and was hoping we'd hear how school was going. Asheville is a nice place and very beautiful and Boon is "eat up" with good music. Hope you're enjoying it all and your holidays too.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: R!
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 09:35 PM

Jon Freeman, I was in Llandudno in 1993. I was on a big coach tour (eek!) and so was there only long enough for a meal and a quick walk around. Wished I could have stayed longer. Expect to be back in UK for a few weeks in 2001. Will keep your number handy.

Rowana


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Matt_R
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 09:38 PM

BTW Cait...you know a guy from Conley named Chris--long hair--earrings--theater student?


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Caitrin
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 09:44 PM

I missed y'all being in Boone? Argh! Thanks for all the welcomes back. And yes, Matt, I know Chrisschnur! Tell him Katie says Hi.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Matt_R
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 09:49 PM

Cool, that's him alright. He lives at the Catholic Newman Center, where I hang out more and more these days. He's now subjected to me and buddy Ryan singing in the house---loudly.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Hotspur
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 10:16 PM

Albany, NY. The capital of New York State, Halfway between Montreal and New York City. It's on the Hudson River, and was founded by the Dutch East India Company. It is the oldest chartered city in the U.S. Population is about 100,000. It's a fairly green and friendly city, I think. It is home to four colleges, State University at Albany being the largest.

The music scene is variable. There are a couple of "traditional pubs." The biggest folk event actually happens in a little town called Altamont, a few miles west of the city. This would be the Old Songs Festival of which many of you are already aware. Altamont is also home to Andy's Front Hall, which is a fabulously fabulous traditional music, recording and instrument store. There is also an organization called the Eighth Step, which brings in good concerts. They recently moved out of the city into a suburb though.


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Subject: RE: Tell us about your town...and the music.
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 16 Dec 00 - 10:34 PM

Well Rick, it could work out the other way round and I end up in Toronto! My parents have promised to help me fund a short holiday in North America which I am hoping to take September or October next year.

My first and most important aim is to finaly get to meet a very good friend from New Hampshire but I am not sure what I do from there. Heading North and meeting some of the Toronto people is certainly one of my desires but maybe I go to the Getaway or something and hope to meet more Mudcatters in one event.

Anyway, at the moment, this is mostly a dream but I will have so little time and so many people I would love to have the chance to meet...

Jon


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