Monday, August 01, 2005

FloydFest 2005 Report

That Canadian cold front sliding south seemed to stall over the Blue Ridge Parkway. The result last weekend was three days of music, a gathering of the tribe, and rain.

But one does not go to FloydFest unprepared, nor let a little rain spoil the fun. Frowns and grumpiness were in short supply as the music carried on through the fog (clouds actually) and sprinkles. Our Base Camp was home to my wife and I, and my wife's sister's ex-husband, their daughter and granddaughter. We had a very good time.

The high point for me was the "family style" gathering late Saturday night at Camp Stillwater, located just a few yards from our base camp. Todd Shaeffer performed solo for about an hour under a large tent, the hub of activity for a contingent of Todd’s (and RRE’s) friends and extended family from New Jersey. As if one needed further proof of the magic of live music performed with skill and feeling, it was under that tent Saturday night. Many thanks to the Stillwater gang for the invitation.

I thought Railroad Earth played especially well, both on the Main Stage Friday night and under the dance tent Saturday afternoon. Certainly the crowd Saturday was about twice the size as last year, the first time I heard the band.

Music has been a large part of my life for over fifty years now. Part of what has sustained my interest has been the ability of musicians from time to time to create something new out of the traditional. Railroad Earth seems to do that, at least to my ears. Skilled musicians individually, together these guys are doing something greater than their sum of their parts.

Here are some photos from the weekend.

Base Camp


RRE, Friday Night, Main Stage


RRE, Saturday Afternoon, Dance Tent


FloydFest, Promenade


Winner, Best Camper

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