Six weekends from now, I'll be finishing up a long week of camping, music, working (crew chief duties), friends, and fun at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival. It will not be too long before I start to load up the performer merch spreadsheet, send out emails to all the performers and/or managers, and start to collect and organize my camping supplies, food and beverages, and my portable office to run the merch trailer.
I happened to pop by the Performers Page yesterday to refresh my memory about who will be there (and who will not) and I'm starting to get a little excited about the fest.
Old Faves: Wonderful to have Brother Sun coming back, they are really a "three-for" because each member of the group (Greg Greenway, Pat Wictor, and Joe Jencks) brings individual energy to the fest and the stages. Speaking of Pat Wictor, his "Most-Wanted" (if I recall correctly) partner Ellis will also be back this year - she's not been back in a while. Susan Werner has become more regular recently, a welcome addition. Nerissa & Katrina Nields (if they weren't coming, it would be news). The Grand Slambovians. June Rich (saw her at FRFF many years back, and not since). Jay Mankita (a long ago fave who has also resurfaced in the past few years).
Most Wanted: Caitlin Canty, Jean Rohe, Matt Nakoa, and Hayley Reardon (stepping in for Tumbling Bones, who will not make it in 2015) will be back this year, rising to the top of the polls from last year's Emerging Artist field. But mention to previous "Most Wanted" artists Ellis, Pat Wictor, Roosevelt Dime, ilyAIMY, and Pesky J. Nixon - all of whom are "home grown" emerging artists now coming back to main stage gigs. One thing I love about Falcon Ridge is the Emerging Artist showcase - in some ways the 24 artists who play short sets each year become my "bucket list" of artists to see in featured spots throughout the musical year.
New for 2015: Garnet Rogers, Judy Collins, Martyn Joseph (not really new, he visited a few years back, and I became a big fan, so welcome back!)
There are always "yeah, but....." artists out there - my FRFF core has been artists like Gorka, Larkin, Brown, Morrissey, Shindell, Kaplansky, Dar Williams, and well, they are getting older (or are no longer with us) and are perhaps a little rich for what has always been a bit of a struggling festival. I get to see them enough. Just being on a hillside in Hillsdale, with friends and music and sun (and rain) is generally sufficient....