Tuesday, September 11, 2007

It's my heart, too

I wish I had met Stuart Mossman. I might have in '71 but I don't remember. I had a chance to see him perform a time or two, back when I was busy raising kids, but I never made it happen. It's like so many other things - you think you have plenty of time for that stuff. Part of me wants to go now and find his wife and his daughters and tell them how he changed big parts of my life just by being who he was and doing what he did, but I'm guessing they've heard it dozens of times, and after seven years just want to be left alone.

And then another part of me wants to approach his town, little Winfield on Walnut, and inform them that this was some great man you had here, and I have just a few questions about him, such as: Why is his name nowhere in the Walnut Valley Festival literature or website? Why are the festivals that he and Sam Ontjes, Dan Daniels and many others worked so hard on, that established the core audience, not listed in the archives?

Why is that lovely sculpture in Island Park just "some pickers" and not Stuart Mossman? Why is the "Sixties Room" at the Cowley County Historical Museum devoid of any mention of the little guitar factory founded in 1965 that put their capital city on the friggin' map?

Why did he never once "play the festival"?

Why have his family all left town?

Maybe it's because I'm not a "regular Winfielder" that I don't already know these things, but a big part of my musical heart is here, as well, and I've become kind of curious in my old age.

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