Yesterday I got to go to a music festival. I know that this casts a bad shadow on my disavowment of music snobbery, since most music festival attendees are either music snobs, rich retirees, or preppy college kids who are still bankrolled by their upperclass parents, but I really got to go only because my professional concert attendee friend payed for my day pass. (and she ROCKS). It was the Sister's Folk Festival, a much anticipated conflagration of trustafarians and hipsters from the Valley who descend on little Sisters en masse to absorb the eclectic mix of bluegrass, jazz, singer-songwriter americana, some of which can only claim the most distant of relations to folk music, whatsoever.
The SFF has been sold out for weeks, quite an accomplishment in this economic environment, until you consider that the maximum capacity of all 5 venues combined probably isn't more than 2000. I was very excited that my friend was able to conjure up a Sunday pass for me, and this was only due to the fact that another friend had bought one and wasn't able to make it. I had to buy indulgences to go and play with the Whoa! Sisters in Sisters by going to church with the family. I think it gives my Lovely Husband a glimpse of the decorum and ritual that a Well-Behaved family would exhibit regularly, when we go to church. Except he always forget about Halle's question asking and the pile of 37 handouts that Nattie accumulates and decorates for her "notes", and Kizzie's fashion "accidents" that bring the youth group boys to our row in droves. I mostly agree to go because they have free coffee, and it's pretty good. Really, me going to church at all is somewhat of a huge concession since it's hard for me to take most organized religion seriously and not despise it. But if we go, we've been going to this place called Journey. It's pretty good, and mostly, I think the people are genuine, which does a lot for me. That and the coffee.
Anyway, after church I headed out to the SFF, dutifully leaving behind pants, as per Whoa! Sister requirements. I got there just after their free community service which is sort of a gospel-universalist church thingy, and that is just as well since they DO NOT have free coffee. I found my Whoa! Sisters, all of whom are Very Excellent Individuals, and we commenced to doing what you do at Music Festivals: eating and wandering. We bounced from venue to venue in an attempt to catch a bit of as many artists as we could, as well as not disturb the rest of the audience with our chatting and gushing about food, but as Whoa! Sister Sailor Ang pointed out, this is really what most music festivals are about. I am not sure which I would rather discuss, the food or the music, but I think I might have enjoyed both equally.
We caught tidbits of Abigail Washburn - a singer songwriter who lived in china and writes and sings chinese lyrics and bluegrass songs with a definitely chinese influence. Interesting and beautiful. The girls kept telling me about some band: blah blah blah and the hi-beams, with enough regularity that I thought that was their actual name. Upon further investigation, Halden Wofford and The Hi-Beams were a fun dance band - Sailor Ang even made me polka - and who can go wrong covering Sixteen Tons, right? If you're in a melancholy mood, check out Gregory Alan Isakov. Great style, a little mournful for the strawberry rhubarb pie that Ang found. The best part and Primary Reason for going, other than, obviously, seeing the Whoa! Sisters, was Pokey LaFarge and The South City Three. This band is fun. And talented. Check them out.
There is so much more to tell you about the rest of this weekend but I don't have time right now... so check back later.