For the uninitiated, at NERFA about 800 or so musicians, songwriters, promoters, venue representatives, festival organizers, music enablers and god knows what else doers – all take over this shabby resort hotel in the Catskill mountains. They play music all hours of the day, night, and next day – on stages, in lobbies, in hotel rooms, in hallways, on elevators. Guitars, banjos, mandolins, fiddles, upright basses (good golly I saw a lot of great bass players!), harmonicas, keyboards, kazoos, and at least one saxophone, the grand piano in the lobby never silenced once the whole weekend. A folkie heaven … and likely hell for the hotel staff. A beautiful community of big hearted, sleep deprived people gathering for the love of a music that will never bring them great fame or fortune. Like the Don Henry song sung by Buddy Mondlock in one of the songwriting workshops – Beautiful Fools.
I was grateful for the unbelievable opportunity to play for a large audience of those wacky folkies at the Folk DJ showcase on Thursday night. Bob Weiser from WOMR Provincetown MA selected me to play. It was a great honor and I will never forget that night. Mr. Weiser is a gentleman, a curmudgeon and a saint. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Other great highlights of the weekend – a 2am showcase with John Sonntag – only two listeners in the room but we played like hell and it was awesome! Kim Jennings played a new song – one of the most moving performances I saw all weekend. Leo DiSanto and Vinegar Creek Constituency rocked out in our room! Red Tail Ring quad showcase – gorgeous! A really great nap at 4pm on Saturday. Playing a packed room with the amazing, generous and sweet Jesse Terry. And eating the chocolate pecan pie he and Jess brought for the room with my heart and soul – Esther Friedman at 3:30am
Thanks NERFA it was all pretty fabulous.