Thursday, October 19, 2006

MWT Goes Down Below

What do you call someone who brings their camera to an event, then forgets to use it?
Well, keep it to yourself...We feel bad enough as it is.

So in your mind's eye (probably faster to download) picture an intimate, cozy space with blue lights, and an evening that opened with the beautiful voices of Maggie Ferguson and Denise Marie Stein or "Foxfire". (Maggie plays guitar and writes cool songs, which she sings with Denise harmonizing and playing autoharp and hammered dulcimer.)

Then, they're joined onstage by Dennis Kingsbury, an expert songwriter and instrumentalist.  (He also sets everything up, runs the sound, and records the video. He gave us a copy while we were still packing up!)

Then comes Leonardo, who plays Delta blues. Yeah, but he knows the history down to whose lick and style is which, and plays his guitar upside-down and backwards! Seriously...this guy plays a regularly-strung guitar left-handed, which bent our minds considerably, especially since he's right-handed!

We finished off the evening (more than a figure of speech) and got a very flattering "standing O" (ovation-have to be specific, nowadays) from one guy down front. An evening like that makes it all worthwhile-the packing, the driving, the loading in, the waiting to perform...That and the big folk music bucks, of course (LOL, as the kids say).

Well, that's "Live from the Living Room" at the Blue Note in Pontiac. These are warm, real folks who always make us feel at home. they work hard to put together a great evening out for fans of acoustic music. Check it out if you're anywhere near Pontiac on a Friday evening. (Right now, of course, the streets are all torn up, so there's a little block-circling involved, but it's worth it!)

Next morning bright and early (okay, early, anyway) we were at the Royal Oak Farmer's Market. the market's in a huge building full of beautiful produce, flowers, and about 4000 folks streaming past. In the city, you get that exciting cross section of ethnic groups--the highlight being an older Russian gentleman (who spoke no english), who came up and began some lively folk tune in Russian. The second time it happened Whitt was able to play accompaniment, and even managed to yell "Hey!" at the appropriate times. The third time he "shared," we were in the middle of a song, so it was a bit distracting for him, but he made it through the entire song despite having to sing over us! Nostrovya!

Our heartfelt thanks to Ellen and Bob doster of the Motor City Side Strokers,  (formerly "Death By Accordion") who were wonderful hosts and helped us get moved in and set up, even though they had a gig in Saginaw that evening. The best part of folk music is the folks!



Tuesday, October 3, 2006

A Crow, a Queen and a quick crowd!

September sped by with us up to our necks in packing boxes and unfinished projects, but we made it out to a few events...and we’re really glad we did. (All work and no play makes Whitt and Judy not only dull, but rather irritable, it turns out!  What does that mean?  Nothing, Honey!))


We were honored to be part of the The White Crow Conservatory of Music’s premier season in Saginaw. What a beautiful place!  “Old church” is a bit of a misnomer. It’s actually a huge brick edifice with room for a coffee shop, concert hall, kitchen, classrooms, and recording studio. There’s also a very special music store featuring handcrafted one-of-a-kind instruments. 



 Some of the rare and collectable instruments festoon the alcoves of the concert hall. (“Festoon”...How often do we get to say that?)






Susan and Zig are the owners and gracious  hosts.   Toocute

    Their hospitality was the best, and we really enjoy their company. 






When you get to "The Crow" check out the tables signed by visiting performers.



Featuring local and nationally-known acts, they have lots going on there.  Check out




We were part of the merry seaworthy troupe who braved the mighty Au Sable River one beautiful Thursday.  Boarding the Au Sable River Queen in Oscoda,    we set paddle on a “three hour tour”... Yeah, we were thinking the same thing you are!




Two hours of live music and then we docked for one of the most sumptuous potlucks we’ve ever attended! (That’s saying something!).





Thanks to Jeff and Toni Felmlee (The Rutabagas) for organizing and pulling it off.  They also produce the Oscoda Summer Music Series, and, a while back, led the only square dance lessons in the whole area.  If it weren’t for this couple, a lot less would happen around here! 


We finished out the month with a return engagement at The Great Northern Music Hall in Howard City, a wonderful

  place to  play!                                                                     Ghostbass                                                              

Lights, a sound man (Thanks, Nate!), and a real stage!   






Good folks, and our kind of audience—a little weird, and quick on the uptake! Here's some of their faces now...



 Natethesoundmanintheback  FuncoupleThepeanutgallery



 Visit for the complete line-up of what goes on there.


October has us headed to the Detroit area for a few days...Watch this space for a full report!  (Okay, come back to it later.  Really.  Don’t just sit there and wait...)