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Saturday, October 6, 2012

Hops Festival and Barn Dance

Yes, yes, I know the summer has happened since last I wrote here.  Nonetheless.

Walking up to the house in the rain late last night, I left the HopsFest and BarnDance still in full and literal swing, a hundred celebrants still dancing in the drizzle to the tune of the Bells Bend String Band.  

We had a couple of Tom's Davidson classmates here visiting, and about three hundred other folks dropped in.  Yazoo's Linus Hall and his family handed out this year's Bells Bend Preservation Ale (very "hoppy", my beerfans tell me--I liked it!), and Stewart Orchard set up a cider press.  The legendary Martha Stamps made chili and roasted our fall veggies. 

Odle (one of our wonderfully rascally neighbors), Matt Walker, Patrick, Julia, the Cobles, and a string of kids-we-have-known-now-grown-up were here, as well as King Carlos, a friend of the Bend who was crowned by one of the five kings of a miniscule territory in Micronesia this last summer. 

But what really knocked me out, when I wandered to the back of the kitchen for a view of the band from backstage, was the drummer.  Thin, intense, in a newsboy cap, he was arranging a semicircle of market baskets around the box where he sat, between drying garlic and a pile of pumpkins, tapping with his drumsticks as he tuned this makeshift drumset, and then lit into the music, his complicated and precise riffs perfectly framing the squaredance band.  Between songs, he pulled a somebody's folded metal chair--or was it a tripod?-- into the mix, which gave a little metallic edge. 

Mark tells me he's a brilliant fusion drummer.  I'm not sure exactly what that means, but I'm totally convinced. 

I thought the whole evening was a brilliant fusion event. Whatever that means.  As I walked home in the rain.

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