I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allen Poe

The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.
- H. L. Mencken

Many people would sooner die than think; In fact, they do so
-Bertrand Russell

What I have been telling you, from alpha to omega, what is the one great thing the sigil taught me — that everything in life is miraculous. For the sigil taught me that it rests within the power of each of us to awaken at will from a dragging nightmare of life made up of unimportant tasks and tedious useless little habits, to see life as it really is, and to rejoice in its exquisite wonderfulness. If the sigil were proved to be the top of a tomato-can, it would not alter that big fact, nor my fixed faith. No Harrowby, the common names we call things by do not matter — except to show how very dull we are ...
-James Branch Cabell

August 12, 2013 - 11:24 a.m.

And the Bands Played On

So the Falcon Ridge saga continues but first a bit about last night.

I went to see the Charismatic Kat Quinn's Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2 debut. I grabbed my usual spot at the Statler and Waldorf seats. I had the mezzanine to myself. Kat was doing sound check and it's very dark in there so I thought I made my way up there unspotted but she saw me and said something from the stage during her set. I'm supposed to be the one heckling when I sit there. Not that I didn't.

Keeping it short. I have written about Kat often and recently. She has it. I don't know what it is, But she has it.

When she does the paper airplane song whose name I can never remember I always throw a paper plane at her. The song is about someone sending a love letter on a plane so I write a minimalist love letter. Last night's said,

The plane truth is I love you.
You make my heart take flight
It's sort of like writing haiku, I'm forced to write something in a very small space. I put it in the center fold of the plane.

Halfway through the set I was joined by Chris Kelly. Chris played with Jeremiah at the Budgiedome and they were Kat's band five minutes after meeting her. I love playing musical matchmaker.

Caitlin couldn't join Kat but it was the first time in ages that she was joined by Jo Kroger. As much as I love Kat solo she's even better when Caitlin and or Jo join her. She knows what to do with harmony. I want to see her with those two and backed by Jeremiah's band. If you have a venue and want to blow people away make that happen.

Kat called Jo, Krog (rhymes with rogue) and that started riffs on her name. I came up with Krogerdile.

After the show we hung out in the back room for a bit, Kat introduced us to her friends visiting from her hometown of Marblehead MA, Drea and and and come on he's a guy you can't expect me to remember his name when there were cute girls around. I learned about the exciting times reading the Marblehead MA Police blotter.

Now let's transport ourselves back in time to the halcyon days of yore, nine days ago at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival. I'm up to Saturday night/Sunday morning at the Budgiedome.

Our lineup was

  1. Lords of Liechtenstein
  2. Spuyten Duyvil with special guests
    • Pesky J. Nixon
    • Eric Lee
  3. Bobtown
  4. ilyAIMY
  5. Honor Finnegan
  6. Martin Swinger+
  7. Putnam Smith
  8. Paul Sachs
The thing that gives me the most satisfaction about doing the Budgiedome is bringing in acts like Kat and the Lords who would not otherwise be at the Festival and introducing them to a new audience and visa versa. I love Falcon Ridge and want to share it with Noah and Dan aka The Lords of Liechtenstein. They are totally fresh and new and I was going to say great songwriters but it goes beyond that. They are great performers. There is more than a bit of Smother's Brothers about them. Like Ellis you just enjoy getting in their heads. They wear sweater vests. Like Woody Allen all girls are mean to them and that provides most of their material. You watch and think, "how can anyone be mean to them?" They can also take direction. I told them that at the start the crowd would be small and it was there job to lure people in so to play loud. By the end there is a large crowd so to save their best material for that. And that's exactly what they did. I loved the music and I loved hearing the people around me loving the music.

It's not news that Spuyten Duyvil with guests Pesky J. Nixon and Eric Lee would be a crowd pleaser. It's fun just watching all those people on stage at the same time. They are main stage performers but I don't think of them that way. They are our people, part of the Budgiedome family.

They aren't an easy act to follow but Bobtown was more than up to it even though Katherine had lost her voice. Feeling bad for her was the only damper on the evening. What made them the perfect band to follow Spuyten Duyvil was that they have the big sound and high energy but use it in totally different ways. There is just the right balance of kinship and difference. People came up to me afterward and said how great they are. They are even better when Katherine has a voice not just the moves. Good thing that Karen and Jen are so good and that Alan and Fred do more than back up the vocals. They can play.

I am going to run out of superlatives. ilyAIMY was next. Yes they have the worst band name. They make up for it by being totally kickass. I'd love them even if they weren't three of my favorite people. there were less in numbers than Spuyten Duyvil and Bobtown but equal in energy and higher in volume. I think Rob or Heather alone might be louder than the other bands. If you could play an electric cello loud I'm sure Kristen would. When they play the Budiedome becomes a rock club albeit an acoustic one. They are also nerd rock. I told Kevin that they have a song about Arrakis aka Dune and he got excited. I requested that they play it and they did.

My adrenaline is pumping just reading the list of who played.

Now somebody had to follow the bands. that isn't an easy thing to do. So we had the little woman with the big voice, Honor Finnegan. Honor also had voice problems. What is it with me? Am I a carrier. I drove up with Honor.. I saw Katherine a few days before the festival. United breaks guitars and I break voices. Honor was in better condition than Katherine so she could go on. She was brave enough to sing a capella. She pulled it off. Honor can follow anybody.

I've been looking forward to Martin playing since NERFA. He was someone I new from around Falcon Ridge and would always talk to him but didn't know he was a performer. He played the Budgiedome open mic once but that was really late and I was really tired and it left my memory. Paul took notes and recorded that I said that he has to come back and play again. He did. He does not rock out but he rocks. He is soft and gentle but with a razor sharp wit. you can't fake good songwriting.

I met Putnam through Spuyten Duyvil. He just keep growing on me. In three acts the Budgiedome went from rock club to old time folk. He sings traditional sounding songs on traditional instruments, banjo and guitar, and you have to listen for the multi-layered lyrics.

Paul is one of my New York peeps. I see him all the time but never take him for granted. Like Honor he was a Kerville New Folk Winner. He's a songwriter's songwriter. What I sometimes forget is how entertaining he is. He is not the guy strumming the guitar singing of how hard it is to be him. He can rock out like on his song whose title I can never remember no matter how many times he told me (OK that's every song) about Elvis's stillborn twin brother. Who else would think you could write a song about him? Jesus Candle is just plain funny with a catchy hook. I can see people loving it who totally don't get what a great song it is.

Once again the open mic had just one performer, official FOB, friend of he Budgiedome Su Polo. That meant I got to go to bed before sunrise!

Only one more day of the festival to write about. I'll have to write about the ride hom too. But I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

I signed the Pro-Truth Pledge:
please hold me accountable.

Memories: Not that Horrid Song - May 29, 2018
Wise Madness is Now In Session - May 28, 2018
The NFL and the First Amendment - May 27, 2018
On The Road Again - May 26, 2018
Oliver the Three-Eyed Crow - May 25, 2018

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Horvendile August 12, 2013
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