August 27 news release
Dear Readers of Driftwood,
Below is a smattering of the news that has washed ashore here since I set up camp.
Below you’ll find some good tidings in the worlds of bluegrass and blues, an online concert from one of the world’s greatest Celtic bands, a heads up on the tour of the masters of one of the rarest instruments on earth, and a little something for the samba dancer in you.
Bluegrass fans and artists may be pleased to learn that Pinecastle Records, which in February 2010 closed its doors due to owner Col. Tom Riggs’s health issues, has been picked up by physician, entrepreneur, lover of bluegrass music, and friend of the Riggs’ family, Dr. Lonnie Lassiter has taken ownership of the company. We’re sure these plucky executives will be releasing the same good pluckin’ music that has come out of Pinecastle for years. [www.pinecastlemusic.com]
The International Bluegrass Music Museum (IBMM) in Owensboro, KY will open its Bill Monroe Exhibit as part of the worldwide Bill Monroe Centennial Celebration on September 10, 2010, just three days prior to what would have been Mr. Monroe’s 99th birthday. The opening will include a reception and an all-star bluegrass concert. […] Featured in the Bill Monroe Exhibit are many of Monroe’s personal artifacts and clothing, records and other items, illustrating the impact of his long and eventful career, which spanned nearly seven decades and resulted in the creation and global propagation of one of America’s original musical genres. Showcased in this exhibit will be two major artifacts never before displayed in a museum setting: Uncle Pen’s fiddle and the famous headstock veneer from Bill Monroe’s mandolin. [www.bluegrassmuseum.org]
The amazing Basque txalaparta-playing duo Oreka TX will be swinging through North America this September. The txalaparta (CHOLL-uh-PART-uh) is wooden planks laid over trestles and struck with sticks held vertically, and it requires two performers in perfect sync to play properly. This is an opportunity to see an exceptionally rare instrument played by masters. Stops include 9/17 and 9/18, in Bloomington, IN, at the Lotus World Music & Arts Festival; 09/19 at Montgomery College in Takoma Park, MD; 09/22/2010 at the Cedar Cultural Center in Minneapolis, MN; 09/23 at San Fran’s Basque Cultural Center; Chino Basque House in Chino, CA on 9/24; on 9/25 Globalquerque in Albuquerque, NM; and two final stops in Chicago at the Cervantes Institute and the Chicago Cultural Center for the Chicago World Music Festival on the 29th and 30th. Hear songs and read more at www.flipswitchpr.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/current.tour/project_id/483.cfm.
Little indie label that could Red House Records has signed Hot Tuna, the band formed by Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady as a side project way back in ’69. Their side project has now gone on far longer than Jefferson Airplane, and yet the fish is still as fresh as you could want. (Let’s hope some washes up on the beach here at Driftwood!) [hottuna.com]
Fans of Brazilian Music should check out the new 1-hour Sergio Mielniczenko program streaming on www.brazilianhour.org, The Brazilian Hour, an online version of his classic radio program that originated in the ’70s. His program features samba, bossa nova, música popular Brasileira, and Brazilian jazz. And it’s broadcast in four languages—Portuguese, French, Spanish, and English. Sergio was a major player in the spread of South American music in the U.S.
On Friday, October 8 at 11 pm Irish time/6 pm Eastern/3 pm Pacific, you can attend an online live streaming performance by Dervish. They’ll be broadcasting it from a pub in their hometown of Sligo, Ireland, and you can see one of the greatest Irish bands on the planet for the price of a pub band: €4.99. That’s less than the cost of a pint at some places here in Baltimore. Your friendly neighborhood editor notes that the last time he saw an Irish band of this quality for this price, the only net he used, inter or outer, was to catch fish. [www.LiveTrad.com]
Is it overly optimistic to think Driftwood has an audience in England? Well, this involves a band with Baltimore roots. Indie folk/pop band Girls in Trouble (led by violinist and Bmore native Alicia Jo Rabins)—whose self-titled debut 2009 album tells the stories of the “the bad girls of the Bible” through their own eyes—will be playing and teaching at Limmudfest in Brighton, England this weekend. Limmudfest is a long-weekend outdoor festival of Jewish culture, live music, storytelling, drama, dance and learning. The band is on its first European tour. And Ashkenaz Festival will take place on the on the U.S. side next week. You can check out the schedule of music, dance, visual art, film, and more for that festival at www.ashkenazfestival.com/festival/schedule.
A Prairie Home Companion picked up a new cast member for its “Summer Love” tour that started this week, Nickel Creek fiddler Sara Watkins. Presumably she’ll be adding her wonderfulness to the Guy’s All-Star Shoe Band. The radio show will hit 25 U.S. cities; you can see if yours is one of them at www.prairiehomecompanion.org. And . . . hey, Baltimore is one of those cities!
The International Bluegrass Music Association has announced its 2010 award nominees. The winners will be announced on September 30, 2010. You can check out the list at www.ibma.org/ibma.awards/currentpress/nomineepress.asp. John Hartford will also be inducted into their Hall of Fame on that night.
Folk Alliance International has announced two of their keynote speakers for their upcoming February conference: David Bromberg (whose face will greet you from a Dirty Linen cover tribute on the FAI website) and Mark Olson (of the Jayhawks). Both of these artists have recently begun remastering and rereleasing their old material, reviews of which will appear in Driftwood. Check it out at the Folk Alliance’s homepage.
And finally, it is with sadness that Driftwood passes on the following announcement from FolkScene’s Roz Larman:
“Kenny Edwards died on Wednesday August 18, from treatment for cancer. Kenny was a founding member of the Stone Ponies with Linda Rondstadt. In later years, he was a member of Bryndle with Karla Bonoff, Andrew Gold, and Wendy Waldman. He toured extensively with Karla Bonoff. FolkScene has a special feature with Kenny airing on August 29. It wasn’t originally scheduled to be a tribute to Kenny. In some strange way, it became that.”
And what the heck, if you’ve made it this far: Midway Fair, the Baltimore folk-rock band led by Driftwood‘s own Jon Patton, will be celebrating their first birthday at the Baltimore Hostel with dinner (cooked by Jon) and a show on August 28. [www.midwayfair.org and www.BaltimoreHostel.org]
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