head talented Folk Festival lineup
perseveres after death
of chairman John Walburn
(May 2011) Although she is a lifelong Hoosier,
Carrie Newcomer will make her first appearance in Madison, Ind., at
this years Ohio River Valley Folk Festival.
The Bloomington, Ind., singer-songwriter is a contemporary Americana
folksinger who writes her own material. She describes herself as a musical
storyteller who finds something extraordinary in ordinary events.
Its so easy not to be present in our own lives. We dont
live in days, we live in moments, she said.
Although shes toured internationally, she revels in her Indiana
roots. Something really good happened when I gave myself permission
to write in my Midwestern voice. For example, her song Geodes
explores the metaphor of the plain, lumpy-looking rock whose interior
is a miracle of crystal complexity.
The Indiana Department of Agriculture is currently using one of her
songs, I Wish I May, I Wish I Might, to promote its Food
for Thought initiative to promote farmers markets and eating locally
produced food. The song is a whimsical look at Indianas county
fairs and local festivals.
Newcomers 12th album, Before and After, was released
recently. She will be the closing act of the Folk Festival, which runs
Friday through Sunday, May 20-22. Newcomer will take the stage at 6
p.m. Sunday, May 22.
5 p.m.: Gates & Folk Art Village Open
6 p.m.: Mickey Clark and
8 p.m.: Adrienne Young
10 p.m.: The Greencards
11 a.m.: Gates & Folk
Art Village Open
Noon: Music Workshop
& Jam Session
1 p.m.: The Tillers
3 p.m.: The Wiyos
5 p.m.: Paul Thorn
7 p.m.: David Bromberg
9 p.m.: Uncle Earl
12:30 p.m.: Youth
1 p.m.: BlueGrazz Junction
2:30 p.m.: Greg Ziesemer
and Kris Luckett
4 p.m.: Hogeye Navvy
6 p.m.: Carrie Newcomer
Tickets: $25 for a three-day pass. Friday only $15; Saturday
only $20; Sunday only $10. Call 1-800-559-2956 or (812) 265-2956
Other headline musicians for the festival are the Greencards
at 10 p.m. Friday and the David Bromberg Quartet at 7 p.m. Saturday.
The sixth annual Ohio River Valley Folk Festival will entertain festival-goers
with outstanding music, enthralling storytelling, interesting handicrafts
and a diverse variety of craft-brewed beer.
The music begins at 6 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday in
Madison Bicentennial Park on the riverfront. Admission wristbands are
$25 for the weekend.
Continuous folk music is the festivals big draw, but other American
art forms are also featured.
Nine crafts people will demonstrate their skills in the Folk Craft Village.
Crafts to be presented are blacksmithing, natural dyeing, gunsmithing,
shoemaking, making hand-carved wooden bowls, boring wood water pipes,
pottery making, weaving and carving wood dippers, spoons and ladles.
In addition, there will be three folk craft vendors selling lamp worked
glass jewelry, wire worked and beaded jewelry and sepia tone photographs.
One tent will be dedicated to storytelling. On Saturday, Southern humorist
Stephen Hollen will appear all day spinning tales as Mark Twain. Twains
appearance is apropos because 2011 is the 200th anniversary of the invention
of the steamboat, which the 19th century author once piloted.
The Rivers Institute at Hanover College will display a traveling exhibit
of river plants and animals, interactive river adventures and a photo
booth. The purpose is to inform the public about the importance of river
systems. ORSANCO, the Ohio River Valley Sanitation Commission, will
bring a 2,200-gallon freshwater aquarium displaying the diversity of
life in the Ohio River.
Everyone who comes to the Ohio River Valley Folk Festival will have
the opportunity to make music themselves.
The Tillers will lead a workshop at noon Saturday in the storytelling
tent. Musicians of all levels are welcome to bring their instruments
and attend the workshop. The Tillers got their start playing for coins
and burritos in the Clifton area of Cincinnati. They were awarded CityBeat
Magazines Cincinnati Entertainment Award for best folk and Americana
act in 2009.
After the workshop, a group that includes Don Pennington, Gordon Moore
and John Sheckler will lead a music participation event called Folk
Jammers. Festival-goers who didnt bring along their own
instruments can take advantage of a few extra guitars, mandolins, dulcimers,
banjos and percussion instruments that travel with the Folk Jammers.
A toy bag includes a cowbell, a tambourine, a washboard
and instruments made from gourds.
We offer musicians of all levels an opportunity to join other
musicians in a multi-style jam, said Sheckler.
David Bromberg Band includes
Mitch Corbin, Butch Amiot,
Bromberg and Nate Grower.
The jam gives all participants an opportunity for
musical growth as they jam with musicians from other styles of music.
The teaching jam is an informal performance. The pace may slow when
performers joining the jam are beginners who need to learn chords or
rhythms. Non-musicians are also welcome at the jam and there is plenty
of room for an audience.
Food and beverages will be available on the festival grounds. All beverages
and food will be purchased with tickets.
In keeping with the Ohio River Valleys artisan tradition,
we proudly offer handcrafted beer and wine from the people who make
it, said Greg Ziesemer, the festivals executive director.
Like the folks who select their wood for a fine musical instrument,
these small-production, high-quality vintners and brewers are engaged
in the entire process, from the selection of the grain and fruit to
pouring your glass.
all female group Uncle Earl consists
of singers Rachel Eddy, KC Groves,
Kristin Andreassen, Stephanie
Coleman and Paula Bradley.
The festival will focus this year on craft breweries such
as New Albanian Brewing Co. of New Albany, Upland Brewing Co. of Bloomington
and Great Crescent Brewery of Aurora. They will offer 3-ounce samples
for $1 each and 12-ounce pours for $4.
Madisons Thomas Family Winery will provide wine. North Vernon
Beverage will offer domestic beer.
The Folk Festival Committee had hoped to hold a craft beer or home brew
competition this year but is substituting the tasting instead. Craft
beer chairman Don Clapham hopes the competition will occur next year
in such categories as pilsner, amber lager, dark lager, pale ale, India
pale ale, English pale ale, porter, stout, Belgian and specialty ales,
such as those flavored with herbs, fruits, smoking or wood-aging.
Carrie Newcomer tours internationally but
roots in her music.
Im a craft beer fan myself and home brewer,
said Clapham, who notes that the third week of May is celebrated as
American Craft Beer Week. What a great time to celebrate the art
of craft beer.
He explained that craft beer is made by small independent or home brewers.
Craft beer has more diversity and flavor than a standard lager. The
craft beer movement began in 1978 when the U.S. Congress passed a bill
repealing federal restrictions on home brewing small amounts of beer.
Peoples taste buds started changing, as a result,
said Clapham. No two beers have to be alike.
A gathering of craft brewers is being planned for Sunday afternoon to
help promote a possible competition to be held at next years festival.
This years Ohio River Valley Folk Festival is the first to be
led by Ziesemer, who took the reins after the death of former director
John Walburn. Walburn died Nov. 12, 2010.
Johns legacy is one of passion and conviction where the
Folk Festival is concerned, said Ziesemer, It is also compassion.
There is nothing else in life that mattered more than his family. But
beyond that, it was the Folk Festival.
Ziesemer and his wife, Kris Luckett, are musicians themselves, and will
perform at the Folk Festival at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, May 22. Both served
with Walburn on the music selection committee for this years festival.
As a consequence, Ziesemer thinks he understands Walburns vision
for the festival well.
courtesy of Scott Bate
late John Walburn had a passion
for music that showed in his dedication
to making the Folk Festival a success.
It never occurred to me, after John died, that I
would take this on, said Ziesemer. Friends suggested that he apply
for the director position, and he said he is glad to bring his 35 years
of music experience to the position. This is a legacy I can leave
to Jack (his son, who is nearly 2). Hes a true Madisonian. Hes
going to grow up watching me and his Mom work on this.
Much of the planning for this years festival was complete before
Walburns death, Ziesemer said, although he was able to add the
Greencards and Newcomer to the schedule. He added, The success
of the Folk Festival has little to do with my involvement but with the
volunteers and committee chairs and the work they did before I came
He said Walburn will be honored from the music stage sometime during
the festival. A Clint Bear guitar that is being given away will be dedicated
to Walburn, with a rose motif in the inlay. Event staff shirts have
a guitar with Walburns initials.
The best tribute we can do for John is to put on a great festival,
Back to May 2011 Articles.