Amid several long days of rain, we got very lucky Sunday with a beautiful, sunny respite that made the 2015 Traveling Man Bluegrass Festival a perfect afternoon. The event supports the German Masonic Charitable Foundation. The foundation comprises the Masonic lodges of the Ninth Manhattan District in New York, many of which have their roots in German immigration to the United States in the last century and earlier. The charities funded by this music festival include the Shriner transportation unit—the group of volunteers who ferry needy kids to and from the Shriner hospitals in Boston and Philadelphia—and several other children’s causes.
An enthusiast of mountain music myself for many years, I was very pleased with the talent that performed all day at German Masonic Park in Tappan. Well, one band had a drum kit and electric bass, and played rock songs—I don’t know what the hell that was all about—but they were okay too. The other acts, hailing from distant rural locales like Philadelphia, Long Island, and Brooklyn, were excellent. In addition, there was plenty of beer (it is German Masonic Park, after all) and food. I can’t wait for the fifth annual festival next year.
|Dubl Handi chose its name for the famous washboard brand. Click here.|
|Buddy Merriam launched his bluegrass career 35 years ago. Actually, Saturday was the anniversary. He knew and performed with Bill Monroe, and he hosts the program Blue Grass Time on WUSB Wednesdays.|
|A brilliant mando picker as well.|
|McMule is the band with the drums and bass guitar. Nothing wrong with that, but it isn't what one expects in bluegrass bands. I had a mental block about it, so I shot only the dobro and mandolin players.|
|I suppose if I had to pick a favorite from among the line-up Sunday,|
it would be Cricket Tell the Weather.