Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Seattle Folklife Festival, 2009

     No writing yesterday, the day before, or the day before that. The Seattle Folklife Festival has been taking precedence during my Memorial Day Weekends for 38 years now. Three full days
and evenings of widely-defined folk music, dance, literature, and food, which leaves me feeling as if I've had a three-week vacation.
     Seattle is unique in many ways. I don't know of any other big American city where 100,000 or more people can cram into an open space, with no violence, threats, or expressions of hostility. (Yes, I know that last year there was a shooting, but one crazy person in 38 years is not indicative). Men danced on the green with men, women with women, men with women, and vice versa. Guys with six inches of spiked hair and six pounds of metal in their faces danced with grannies in sun hats.  And the sun stayed out all day, for all three days.  In Seattle.  Really.
     Popular Seattle-area comic Kermet Apio showed the breadth of his talent, playing a fabulous set of Hawaiian slack-key guitar, and singing beautifully, as his daughter, wife, and sister (who
choreographed one of the pieces) danced to the music. Talk about genetic influences.
     Here you see Underground Swing, a great group which plays hip gypsy jazz and swing. After their set, I got to hear Howlin' Houndog and the Infamous Losers, with their Freaky-Ass Country Blues-Tonk. Really. You get the idea.
     Back to the book today. Only 362 days till the 2010 Festival.