We think this is as good a spot as any to wax wistful. Why not, right? Over the years, we’ve gone over what the Newport Folk Festival means to us: music, fans, artists, and rain on occasion. But this year was a little different. It was Saturday morning, snoozing in the shade, where we were met by a fellow Newport Folk Fest photographer. She had missed the first day, and maybe was hoping to catch a familiar face when we felt the tap on our leg. Imagine a quick “hey.” Or a pretty lengthy chat. We caught up, on life and on music, and crossedRead More →

Let’s start at the end. There was soul. There was dancing. There was camaraderie, a vicious sunburn, and music, through and through. We’ll say this, too: 2015’s Newport Folk Fest was still our favorite of all the years. But there was something special, something different about this one, just from a personal point of view. It was different, different from all the other years we’ve been. But we’re going to get to that on the Sunday post. Right now, we’ve got music to attend to. We’re going to start an hour into the ‘Fest. We’d known a couple people partial to Basia Bulat, and figuredRead More →

Welcome back! It’s been quite a while, hasn’t it? This past week has been personally busy… blah blah blah, like y’all really care. You’re here for the Green River Fest wrap-up, right? Good. The right place, this is. We’re going to start at the campsite for Sunday. This conjunto was quite a pleasant morning surprise (photos (C) Matthew Keefer): There’s too many of them! Upstate Rubdown giving folks the low-down. Upstate Rubdown outta New York State gave the campers a good wakey-wakey on Sunday. There were eight of them, and if you count real carefully, you’ll notice we missed their acoustic guitarist (who would beRead More →

Hello y’all and everyones.So we’re going to continue our Green River Festival review today, a day later than planned, but a day earlier than what was likely going to happen (due to procrastination). Sorry for the delay! When we last encountered our festival-going hero, the clouds were in the sky on a Friday night, threatening the sanctity of a good set of funk. The threat receded, and now we’re back to catch a whole new day, a whole new set of photos (all (C) Matthew Keefer) and wholly new acts (to us) such as: Lula Wiles, way before the rain. This trio of young ladies,Read More →

We’re still recovering from the Green River Festival in Greenfield, MA this past weekend. Two and a half days and three stages of pure, unadulterated music at the Greenfield Community College. It was… draining, yes. But certainly worthwhile. So as tired as this ragged body may be, we hope y’all give us some leeway with our first day of the GRF post-coverage. We’re not going to be graceful, organized, or even coherent. But we will have pictures! (And all pictures (c) Matthew Keefer.) Pictures like this one, of jazz/funk master Charles Neville. Charles Neville, in “more cowbell” mode. One of the covers he and hisRead More →

Greenfield, MA: July 8-10, 2016. $120 for two and a half days of music. Pure. Unadulterated. Music. And it’s a quite good lineup. Very good. Exceptionally good. Check it HERE. So we suspect you might’ve missed those early bird tickets. No matter, this is still an excellent price (especially if you don’t feel like getting scalped for the Newport Folk Festival). But here’s who we’ve come to talk about: Kearney and Davis and funky shades. (c) not us We’ve been talking mostly about the Saturday lineup, because we’re most familiar with those artists, but on Sunday comes this lass (and gent): Bridget Kearney and BenjaminRead More →

Coming in July, 2016… Mistah Graves. (C) Erika Goldring. This guy. Whereabouts, you might ask? None other than the Green River Festival. Hosted by Greenfield Community College July 8-10 at the Franklin County Fairgrounds in Western Massachusetts, this lil’ Fest just came upon our radar on their 30th anniversary, hooray! Happy Dirty Thirty! But the real cause of celebration here is the stellar lineup they’ve got for this year, including: – Shakey Graves– Dawes– The Suffers– Shovels and Rope And another couple dozen artists. Some thoughts on these guys and gals: – Shakey Graves’ And the War Came almost fell through the cracks on ourRead More →

The Dave Rawlings Special: Bitta heat, bitta cool, cowboy hat. All folk. All photos (c) Matthew Keefer …and led us to the weekend, which we hit/ Just like a freight train. Got there early/ We couldn’t wait… for Gillian Welch and headlining collaborator, Dave Rawlings. The Dave Rawlings Machine, comprised of Welch, Willy Watson, Paul Kowert and, of course, Mr. Rawlings himself, were joined by Miss. Brittany Haas to tour for his sophomore solo, Nashville Obsolete, which we’re totally digging right now. You likely will dig it, too. Welcome to the Machine. (L to R) Kowert, Welch, Watson. You know why we say that? BecauseRead More →

We’ll admit it: The Oh Hellos is one of our favorite discoveries to come out of the Newport Folk Fest (’14, if you recall). A large, overwhelming nontet with two drummers, the brother/sister duo of Maggie and Tyler Heath seem to come naturally into singable, joyous melody, and at Providence last week… Well, we’ll get to that. But first things first. (Photos (C) Bera Dunau) A Cereus Bright in the dark night. (L to R) Tyler Anthony and Evan Ford. Cereus Bright caught us off-guard. Lovely harmonies, the quintet puts out. Their sound was beautifully balanced, and their drummer – sigh – their drummer! Don’tRead More →

The much-belated finale of the Newport Folk Fest is here. The third part, the Sunday of the weekend. The part where we pretend to wax wise and cast about all kinds of wisdoms. Pelt you with them. And with pictures, too (again, all copyright Ravings). Electrical tape apparently fixes sizable holes. Chris Stelling is here to the left, erm, other left, we guess. And the one thing we can say about him, other than the fact that he really, REALLY should just get a new guitar at this point, is that he’s got really good, intricate plucking and riffs. Maybe that’s where the two sizableRead More →