Sunday, September 30, 2018

Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival

I went up to NH for my mom's birthday, and we went to the local metropolis for a maritime folk festival.  It was a spectacular day.

We stopped in briefly to a cafe/bookstore called "Book & Bar," but we figured out before we ordered anything that there was to be poetry, rather than music, in that venue.  A pity, since I'd have liked to browse their collection...

The theme continues! (Yes, we ate there once)

We got a late start, so we saw just two acts, the Vox Hunters and the Johnson Girls.

The Vox Hunters are a duo from Rhode Island.  The fiddler had unfortunately been stung on the left hand by a bee earlier that morning -- he was icing it again after the close of their set -- but the show must go on, as they say.

The Vox Hunters at the John Paul Jones House

I found "Ocean Burial" particularly moving -- especially the line "It matters not, I've oft been told, where the body lies when the heart gets cold."

Loved this version of Yankee Doodle:

The Johnson Girls had a lovely blend of voices, and it was interesting to hear them tackle various traditional songs that offer a male perspective, as well as others that focus on the women left behind.

We also attended a sing-along in a somewhat unfortunately named bar ("Portsmouth Gaslight"), where there were a large number of musicians up front by the windows and a seemingly well-informed audience -- or perhaps I should say, an audience apparently well-versed in the lyrics of many maritime folk songs.

My brother and the girls met us at home in the later afternoon; my sister-in-law couldn't make it, but sent a delicious cake.

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