Archive for the ‘Deer Tick’ Category

[CANCELLED: July 31-August 2, 2020] Newport Folk Festival

Last year we took the whole family to two days of the Newport Folk Festival.  It was a fun experience for the most part.  Both kids were exhausted and my son decided he’d rather stay in the hotel than go on the second day.  However, this year he said he;d like to go again, so since the 2020 Festival was cancelled, maybe next year all four of us will go again.

I was not surprised that the Festival was cancelled. But it was still a shock when it happened on April 29th.

Here’s the formal message

Dear Folk-

This is the letter I was praying I wouldn’t have to write, feeling we need the healing powers of live music more now than ever. It is with the heaviest of hearts we announce the cancellation of the 2020 Newport Folk Festival. As devastating as it is to write those words, it’s balanced with a renewed sense of, well, HOPE. It’s Rhode Island’s motto for good reason and it’s also the feeling you, our festival family, constantly exudes when we come together in good times and perhaps more importantly, in difficult times as well. This community is truly unlike any other in music, and I believe we can emerge from this hardship stronger and more connected than ever before.

However, while your safety was at the core of the present decision, your support will be at the core of our future viability. Our ability to produce this festival in 2021 – and continue making a lasting difference in the lives of artists, students and music lovers like yourselves – is in your hands. Quite simply, we need your help.

Due to the financial and institutional uncertainties we find ourselves in, we believe the most trusting and direct course of action is to let the ticket holders decide where their ticket dollars should go. We have sent all ticket holders an email mapping out three options: 1) donate all or a portion of your ticket that will go directly towards ensuring our festival for 2021 while continuing our support for artists and educators; 2) apply your refund towards a 2021 Revival Membership – a new and one-time offer we’ve created specifically to ensure our future and provide these members with 3-day tickets to the 2021 festival (remaining memberships will be offered to the general public directly after the request period); and 3) receive a 100% full refund if desired.

For those of you who didn’t have tickets for this year, PLEASE consider making a tax-deductible donation. Help us continue these festivals, support year-round music education initiatives, and provide grants to artists in need.

I want to personally thank our founder George Wein, our staff, our Board of Directors, the City of Newport, and the DEM for their continued efforts. And, offer a personal note of gratitude to Rhode Island Governor, Gina Raimondo, for her leadership and counsel in prioritizing our well being in making the decision to cancel the festival.

Although we won’t be able to gather at the Fort this summer, rest assured we have invited ALL the announced artists to join us next year. In the meantime, we promise we will all commune one way or another on our festival weekend. As always, we have some secret surprises in store as well, so stay tuned for more details in the coming weeks. Until then, stay strong and folk on.


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SOUNDTRACK: DEER TICK-“Main Street” (Field Recordings, July 18, 2012).

NPR created a bunch of Field Recordings at Sasquatch Music Festival.  I picked this one [Deer Tick Among the Honey Buckets]  primarily because it featured Deer Tick front man John McCauley singing front of a bunch of porta potties.

I actually don’t know much about Deer Tick, so I don’t know if they normally sound folky or what.  But this song, in its acoustic setting is very good.  John McCauley’s voice works great here.  There’s even a nice shout out to MCA.

There’s not a ton to it, and this alone won’t make me a fan, but I’ll certainly check out more by them.  It’s also a nice video to watch, especially for the amusing encore.

[READ: August 1, 2012] “The Use of Myth in History”

Most of the articles in Colonial Williamsburg have to do with, well, Colonial Williamsburg.  This one, however, talks about myths that we as Americans have created and continue to believe, from colonial times to more days.

The article opens by explaining that Patrick Henry’s famous “give me liberty or give me death” speech was written down forty-two years after the fact by William Wirt.  And he wrote it down from memory, so who knows what words Henry actually spoke.  But no doubt Wird got the gist right.  So the Henry speech is a myth–not necessarily wrong but not exactly true either.

Klein explains that some historians would like to remove the myths from history and focus only on the facts, but stories like Henry’s are so popular, so ingrained in our memories, that removing them would do more damage than the beloved myths do.  Indeed, some historians believe that myths are very important.  Micheal Gerson wrote, “We know that myths are not the same as lies” and John Thorn said “Historians have an obligation to embrace myth as the people’s history”

Klein writes that America’s mythology was largely created by writers from the early 1800s.  Pressure was building towards the War of 1812 and they needed support.  The mythology was designed to get people to forget about the ugly Revolutionary War.  And so stories were created just in time for the birth of public education in America to disseminate the stories.  And so mythological stories like George Washington and the cherry tree or the midnight ride of Paul Revere or Plymouth Rock or even Pocahontas became enshrined in textbooks.  Now, most myths are based on facts, but the truths were embellished and made more romantic and given a moral.  So, yes Patrick Henry did give a speech, the Pilgrims settled in Plymouth and Paul Revere did ride into the countryside to warn of the British invasion. but probably not exactly as we think they did.  So nineteenth century writers made George Washington the symbol of our country–a unifying power to embody a nation. (more…)

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