I am a 36 year old woman who may not live in "The Big City" but I like the little city I live in and there is a lot that goes on around here too! This is a place where anything can happen..or be written about!!!!
Bring on the music!!! This year I am lucky to be able to be a part of the North Shore Folk Festival here in Salem Massachusetts! Pretty much everyone who knows me knows I have a passion for music (and musicians as well; wink wink). I was so excited when my friend John Kane asked me if I would like to help out as a volunteer this year for the 3rd annual folk festival here in Salem. I truly jumped at the chance. It is fun to be a part of something in your community..especially something you feel animated about!
I met the gifted artist/musician John Kane through my BF the also quite talented musician Delvis. Actually the first time I met John Kane I was just recovering from my 2nd hip surgery, and I was going to see Delvis's gig at the Front Street Coffeehouse .I was only a few weeks post surgery, so I was still on crutches and this kind guy open the door for me. Not only did he offer to keep the door open, but he offered to carry me in as well, and that is what started off a very lovely friendship (D told him I will be the girl on crutches, so he knew ahead of time it was me). Since then D and I have joined John and his beautiful and quite witty wife Jennifer to the holy lands of Bethel NY to the site of the Festival of all Festivals Woodstock (I blogged about this in a previous post..youcan go check out that "crazy/fun" experience underPeace, Love, and now some more Understanding!").
There is nothing like a day of music to help bring a community together, a place where families can share the love of music with their children, where friends can meet up, a place to discover new musicians who may become your new faves. It's always fun to have a celebration and that truly what this festival is all about...a celebration of music, art, and community....something we should do more of!
So I am very excited for May 7th to let festivities begin! So lets the get to the interview with the man behind the curtain, the guy who puts festive in festival...John Kane!
S: What inspired you to start this festival 3 years ago?
J: "I had always envisioned myself facilitating an event like this,one that combines both art, music and literary elements. Being a musician and visual artist... it just seemed like a natural extension of my talents"
S: Why did you choose Salem as the location?
J:"I love Salem! Old Town Hall seemed like the perfect venue for this caliper of music. Hopefully if NSFF grows I may expand it to a larger ,outdoor, or even expanded mulit-day experience. I called it the North Shore Folk Festival for a reason as we may see it surface in other towns on the North Shore"
S: In your eyes what makes this festival special?
J:"I don't know...maybe my love for good storytelling, as well as American and traditional folk music? Storytelling is so important in music...people forget that. I also pay extra special attention to the talent of the performers and I hope that shows. I really want families to enjoy themselves without having to spend a ton of money ...as we all know you can't see a show these days under $50.00"
S: What can we expect this year from the 3rd annual festival?
J:"Well we have Mike and Ruthy as headliners. They are both two very talented individuals from Woodstock NY.We also have two strong local acts with a fair following...the Willows and Delvis. Adam Rothenberg is also another amazing addition this year"
S:Can you share some moments from previous NSFF festivals that stand out in your mind that make you excited to keep on doing this?
J:"Last year one act decided to play extremely drunk and plugged in..not cool...but what can you do?On a much more positive note...the response from musicians and festival goers letting me know how much they enjoy the event...there are so many who want to play"
S:What are your long term goals for this festival in the future?
J:"To have it be an outdoor three day festival...I would at least like to try it out!! I would also like to see it impact the community on a much larger scale. For example this year we are hosting a food can drive for LifeBridge of Salem (formerly Salem Mission) if folks bring 2 cans of non-perishables to the event they get $2 off of admission.
S:What do you personally love about music?
J:"Its deep connections to the human psyche"
S:How did you go about choosing the acts this year to perform?
J:"Extensive listening... its a one day show so its tough"
S:Why should people attend the festival this year?
J:"To support local arts and music...what would we do without these two elements in our community? NSFF is a family friendly event we are proud of that as well. Its also a fun and memorable event"
S: What does it take to put on a festival like this?
J:"One guy....me...John Kane"
Its a labor of love...that's all I have to say.Although I have a few very nice people helping NSFF along the way! Thank You to our Sponsors: Boston Web Studio, Zimman's Fabric and Furniture, Kappys of Peabody, Modern Millies, The Howling Wolf, and Creative Ink.
Performers This Year: Mike and Ruthy
Mark Mandeville and Rianne Richards The Willows Avi Jacob Delvis Adam Rothenberg Thea Hopkins Doug Kwartler Maggie Mackay Outrageous Fortune US Sam (MC) George Jack (Poet)