Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Mr. & Mrs. Garvey



For those with some time on their hands, you can jump back to the posts from 8/30 and 9/03, and perhaps you'll be shocked at the change in style and demeanor of this extraordinary couple, Pat and Victoria Garvey. The years from 1967 to 1971 ignited some of the greatest cultural changes of any four-year period in history, and they are living, visual, proof. I have reason to believe that the photographer here is Murl Webster.

Since their work only exists on vinyl, I guess I have to invite you over to my house to show you what amazing musicians they were. You could search out Steve Goodman's version of "The Lovin' of the Game", which is awesome, but you wouldn't get that eerie harmonic convergence of the two voices. Come to my New Years Eve party and we'll play the albums, and I'll show you the chords to "Song For Kansas". I'm serious, just send an email. Wichita's close to everywhere, right?

The Garveys, along with Art Eskridge and Charlie Cloud, are among the few that played both student-run festivals. I had the great pleasure of speaking with Victoria (now Armstrong) by telephone from her home in southern New Mexico. I hope I was able to rein in my profound admiration for her and her work. Understandably, she doesn't remember a lot about Winfield - they played all over and you know, frankly, forty years is a long time for the human brain to hold much besides sawdust and old movies. She does remember Stuart, of course, because they had one of his guitars, and she remembers the Bromberg - Crary thing from 1971 - but anyone within half a mile of that gymnasium remembers the Bromberg - Crary thing. Victoria is still active on the folk circuit as half of the duo, Don and Victoria Armstrong. Kansans can catch them on occasion at the Iron Horse in El Dorado.

Pat Garvey suffered a stroke in 2006 and is residing at the Eastern Montana VA Home.


Next, another profound fashion statement, this time from Johnny Vandiver.

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11 comments:

beacheagles said...

My husband and I were friends with Pat and Vicky back in 1969. I had brief contact with Pat just before his stroke. I hoped to go visit, but life did not cooperate. Now I cannot find his web site. Is he still with us? I wanted to buy a CD copy of Orange Nickolodean.... such good times. Wonderful songwriter and human being. Pat and Vicky gave us a dog named Keats. We miss him too.

Anonymous said...

Pat is my first cousin. He is about 10 years older than me. I remember going to a Kingston Trio concert when I was a freshman in college and Pat invited me to a party with the Trio after the concert. I saw Pat and Victoria play at a coffee house in the U-District (University of Washington) back in the 60's. I had a letter from Pat last year and as far as I know he is still recovering from the stroke and was about to move into independent housing in Montana.

Anonymous said...

I played drums for Pat in 1979-80. I hope he's still alive. I have great memories of playing a gig in LaConner Wa. He blew people away that night. I honestly think he never got over the split with his wife.

Anonymous said...

I am a little younger than y'all so I have no trouble remembering 40 years ago, which is 1969. I was in high school and volunteering for the local public radio station, hoping to get a show when I got to college (which I never did). The DJ played Pat and Victoria's "Today is the First Day" as the theme song of the show that I was volunteering on, so I heard it...every day. As a result I still know the song and perform it. I also heard Steve Goodman play "Loving of the Game" many times but didn't realize it was the Garveys' until I just read it here.

I'm sorry to hear Pat Garvey is not well but I hope he recovers. Larry Siegel

Anonymous said...

Sorry, it's called "Fugacity," not "Today is the First Day..." I guess I forgot that part :-) However I don't know what the word means. Larry Siegel

CatsnPottery said...

From dictionary.com:
1) Passing away quickly; evanescent.
2) (Botany) Withering or dropping off early.

BTW when John Denver recorded this on his album Rhymes & Reasons the title was published as SUGACITY. I has always assumed that SUGACITY was a made up word combining fugue and sagacity ... and that made sense to me.

However, the original title on Garvey's vinyl is Fugacity. So I expect that must be the correct title.

Leslie said...

To Pat's cousin. Please tell me is Pat alive? I still have his emails to me, but no luck in using them to reach him. I know someone in Montana who might help me find him.... but I need a town. Does anyone know?

BTW You are discussing Fugacity from Orange Nickolodean..... Wish I had that cd. I played John's singing of Pat's song for those gathered at the year anniversary memorial of John's death on the beach at Pacific Grove, CA. At the line "on Monarch wings," on cue, several Monarch butterflies flew low over the crowd.

Leslie said...

Found Pat's address in Anaconda, MT, but when I called his number, he was no longer there. Will continue to try.....

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