Tuesday, September 18, 2007

To the mountain, and back again

It occurs to me that Winfield is very much like a homeopathic - a small dose of a very powerful medicine that can, and most likely will, alter the very fabric of your being for years down the road. It's so powerful that we build things to keep that spirit alive: Stringbreak, Grandma's Farm, the KAAA campouts, the Carp Camp campouts - hell, the Carp Camp jams twice a week year-round. That's some good medicine.

I think there's an innate urge to claim and play our own music, to somehow offset the din of the corporate commercial pop charts. That's a big part of why this and other festivals are growing year by year, decade by decade; why people are immersing their children in it from birth; why those few days in September are the center of so many lives.

The story of the birth of the Walnut Valley Festival is still unfolding, and I now have in hand some very interesting documents from the '67 festival, including discussions of what "folk music" is, and what the educational objectives were that inspired the early organizers. Those who have followed so far I hope will return in a week or so when the story will pick back up. I have another journey to take, in another direction, concerning the passing of my father this past spring. Things may be a little clearer from the upper reaches of the Sangre de Cristo; maybe little Winfield Kansas will be in sharper focus, maybe a lot of things will be.


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