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Kingston Chapter News

Volume 20, Issue 5: May & June 2000

Newsletter segments:

Kingston chapter news, Patterson chapter news, Poughkeepsie chapter news, and other articles.
-by Cheryl A. Rice

"The warm weather brings us all out," observed Kingston coffeehouse MC Vince Sauter. "For me, it's you, Vince," quipped resident soundman Joe Murray. In any case, on this mild March 4 eve, over 40 folk music lovers attended. For a change of pace, Joe did the intro honors for Vince. "Heart Don't Fail Me Now," Sauter's most recent composition, got the evening off to a heartfelt start. Next came 'Yankee Rose', consisting of Terri & Steve Massaido. "Heart of Hazard County" was followed by the sweet ballad, "Dance A Little Closer to Me". Come on back, Yankees!

Another newcomer, Bob DeGraw, followed with, "a little Marianne Faithful for ya,", tips on riding through Paris in a sports car and music appreciation. ("What would life be? Who could live without it?", as the song goes). Eli Melamud, another first-timer, treated us to classic Dylan, and "My Old Friend,"an original remembrance of a trip across the border. Mike Clarke followed with a song about another kind of trip-- camping! His second number was Tom Waites' "Needed the Song". The next performer has been quoted as saying, "Brevity is the soul of music," and Bruce Ackerman practices what he preaches. Quick pickin' and sultry Gershwins melodies are a given when Ackerman lumbers up to the mic. Bob Lusk, our feature performer on May 6, gave us a sneak listen to what's to come in tulip time. "As we move into Irish season," saith Bob, leading into a medley of Celtic music, including the work of Andy Stewart.

Denise Finley, with help from Joe Murray, closed the first half of the evening with "How Long the Rain Will Fall". Denise soloed on Janis Ian's signature lament, "At Seventeen".

Speaking of Irish season, 'Irish Rain' fell in(to) the Unitarian after the break, in the form of Bill Wemmerus, Barbara Mahon, Steve Ortlowski, Tom Walker and Ed Schaeffer. This band of rovers got the crowd in the mood with shanties, slurpers and singalongs. Steve boomed on "Sloop John B" and "Gypsy Rover." Tom was featured next on the mandolin for a rousing "Green Castle Hornpipe." Steve came back with the gang to "Rosin the Bow," followed by Ms. Mahon on guitar and lead vocals with a sad ballad inspired by "Angela's Ashes." All joined in on Woody Guthrie's "It's Hard." Advised to "make as much noise as you possibly can," the audience also joined in on "Wild Rover." All in all, a hardy joy for all who attended!

The open was resumed with an appearance by Bruce Blair, who with a nod to our Joe ("The sound man is the guitar's best friend") did justice to Dylan's "I Shall Be Released." He topped himself with an a capella version of "Fairwell to Tarwaithe", a Scottish ballad. Bob Wright continued the merriment with four pithy poems. Stephen Rhodes turned the mood blue with "If He Asks You" and that no-good "Stagger Lee."John Martucci graced us with two piano numbers, the first an original, the second a lovely song entitled, "You Are a New Day." Kevin Walsh, in an unusual solo turn, offered up Doc Watson's "All About You and Jay Unger's "Mountain House" on the fiddle. The Becker Experience followed, with Kevin first on "Tom Thumb's Blues," then joined by Carol for a little "Help, Encouragement & Kindness," (the Becker family motto, it would seem). Yours Truly, the feature performer for June, wow'd 'em with a couple of perky verses to close the evening.

MC Vince Sauter ducked the mic music-wise at the April 4 coffeehouse, and the festivities began with three poems from that grand curmudgeon Bob Wright. Semi-regular Blair Shepherd followed with "Come On In," ("a friendly little song," according to Blair) and John Prine's "Hello In There." "Oracle," a swinging instrumental, was performed next by Scott Morrison, uncharactistically wireless. Karen Whitman and Rick Pantell, just prior to a guest shot on WAMC's 'Dancing On The Air,' returned to the Kingston stage with their classic blend of originals and traditionals. Their first song was a Hungarian tune, with Karen on violin and Rick on guitar. Both switched to kazoos for their second song, a lament concerning the travails of a power outtage.

Vince, donning a cap in an attempt to bond with the irrascible Murray, helped in setting up for Bruce Blair, once a capella, now fully strung. Both Joni Mitchell's "Urge for Going," and Bob Dylan's "Ride Me High," betray Bruce's lifelong love for words. Linda Breithaupt followed, her skill and warmth in full evidence. "A Very Blue Moon,", a Nancy Griffith tune, and a gospel number, "Mary Don't You Weep," got things jumping. Yours Truly read two spring pieces in honor of 'National Take a Poet to Dinner Month. .' Barry Miller, a welcome new face, gave us "Two Too Many," about one unfortunate form of double dating, and "K.I.S.S. (Keep It Sweet & Simple)." Don't be nervous, Barry! We don't bite! Denise Finley and Joe Murray ended the first half with a rundown of the Patterson coffeehouse ballteam (who's on first??)

Guitar wizard Bruce Ackerman opened the second half with the lively, "Girlfriend of the Whirling Dervish." Following was, "Farewell to My Bluebell," in a country vein. "Memphis Blues," was yet another example of Bruce's superb picking style. Uptown tune, "Lady Be Good," was followed by hobo anthem, "Waiting For a Train." Willie Nelson's "Crazy" was done as an instrumental, but sung along to anyway by most of the audience. "Alabama Jubilee," got toes tapping, including Ackerman's. "Next Time I'm In Town," was followed by the classic standard goodnight number, "I'll See You In My Dreams." Thanks once again to Mr. Ackerman for another magical set!

For round two, Vince finally got up to the mic for "Abilene." Blair returned with an a capella tune. Rick and Karen did a Macedonian folk tune. (But what did Rick's shirt mean?) Four Non-Blondes were made manifest by Bruce Blair's rendition of "What's Going On?" Linda returned with a lovely Pat Humphries song, "Swimming To the Other Side." Yours Truly followed with a spring moon poem. Barry came back with that Beatles' sing along, "A Little Help From My Friends." Denise expressed her "Hunger For You"on Murray's guitar (having left the Great Graphite at home). Vince's "Day Is Done," gave the harmonizers a chance to practice. Last but not least was Joe Murray with "an even more traditional song," "Will The Circle Be Unbroken?"

Thanks to all and see you next month. I'll be looking for ya!

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