Sunday, September 6, 2009

Folk Off

Last weekend was Bangor's American Folk Festival and we went! We planned on going Saturday, but it was such a rainy day we figured it wasn't worth the drive. Fortunately, Carrie also had Sunday off, so that's when we went.

The music acts were starting at noon, but we arrived earlier than that, so looked around the vendor tents a bit. Nothing too exciting, though Carrie did buy a couple of things.

The first act we went to was Nikolay Kolev, who played Bulgarian music on his gadulka. It was interesting enough that we wanted to see him perform with the rest of his group, Bulgarika. We walked over to the stage they would be on fairly soon afterwards and caught the tail end of French Vocal Traditions and Carrie heard her first Acadian music. Kind of like Cajun Celtic. We both like it. Bulgarika had a huge crowd and when they got going they really rocked the house!

After that we meandered off to the far end of the area to the Children's Stage (there were six stages total, so you know there was a lot of music going on here!) We caught three acts here, Gene Tagaban, One Crazy Raven, pictured above, was a Native American story-teller. His picture, dressed in Tlingit Raven garb, was on the show t-shirts and programs, and certainly caught Carrie's eye.

Also on this stage were Music From China, an ensemble that played, well, music from China. And they interacted with the children in the audience as often as they could. And the last group we watched here was Andes Manta. They had about three dozen different instruments that they kept switching around on while they played music from the Andes Mountain region. One guy was extraordinarily speedy on his little guitar. Check him out on this clip. And, no, I did not speed it up at all.

We left them a little early to go see the India dance troup featuring Mythili Prakash, but unless you were in the front row, a lot of what they did was completely lost behind audience members' heads.

Still, it was a fun day and we intend to go back next year.

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