Saturday morning dawned sunny and warm, so I took my cart and went out on a photo safari to capture the many joys of Strawberry Park. Along the way, I stopped for red-white-and-blue pancakes provided by Frank and Barbara Shaw. Nice way to enjoy a second breakfast.
The Boxcar Lillies, an Americana/Folk band specializing in singer/songwriter material continue to sharpen their show and improve their singing. They exude charm and enthusiasm along with plenty of energy for an early morning show. The addition of Susan Cattaneo, who teaches singing and song writing at Berklee, has improved the vocal color in this group.
Dry Branch Fire Squad has appeared in all but one Strawberry Park Bluegrass Festivals with unique blend of primitive old time music and Ron Thomason's country humor masking his wit and wisdom while softening the blow. Always great entertainment, especially if you wear your Thought Repellent Hat. If not....you might get some ideas, too.
Bryan Sutton, described as the definitive guitar player of the current era, which puts him in a league with Clarence White, Doc Watson, and Tony Rice, has assmbled three young gun pickers to tour in support of his new CD The More I Learn on Sugar Hill Records. He's playing material from the recording as well as assorted other songs from his musical past on this tour. The surprise of these performances is not only Bryan's clear, clean voice, but his between-the-songs charm as he talks about the material and his musical heroes. Casey Campbell on mandolin, fiddler Mike Barnett, and bassist Sam Grisman are the ideal musicians to support Sutton.
People at several festivals look forward to Dry Branch Fire Squad's Sunday gospel music program.
Blackstone Valley Bluegrass originated in the Blackstone Valley of Massachusetts, having since moved on to different parts of sourthern New England, but continuing as a musically diversified, melodic, and energetic band offering a range of material from hard driving traditional bluegrass through contemporary singer/songwriter material in a pleasing, engaging performance. Just right....