If you were at the festival yesterday you know that bigger and better didn't even begin to cover it. The evening may have ended in a deluge, but nothing could wash away the feeling of awesome overload that was Saturday at the Newport Folk Festival. And today is going to be even bigger!
But while you're racing from tent to tent to check out all the bands you know and love, we ask once again, that you think of the little guy. Some of the very BEST performances yesterday took place at the Harbor Stage and the adjacent Museum stage,we've reason to believe that's going to hold true today - here's a few reasons why.
So you say you like that sweet sweet “Laurel Canyon Sound?” If you do (and you are heading to the Newport Folk Festival so it’s a pretty safe bet), be sure not to miss Jonathan Wilson. A musical “jack of all trades,” Mr. Wilson is equally renowned for his skills behind the glass as he is for his talents on a variety of stringed instruments. He is also an advocate of “back to basics” songcraft and a scholar of the original Laurel Canyon scene. As such, it was no surprise when the North Carolina native chose to relocate to the Canyon itself to record his debut double LP, Gentle Spirit.
Gentle Spirit was recorded over a lengthy period over time, taking shape between the myriad production gigs, jam sessions, and live shows that made up life in the Canyon. As a result of this process, the album evokes a clear sense of place, its meandering rhythms echoing the character of the recording space and Mr. Wilson’s mindset. Indeed, Gentle Spirit calls to mind the sound of the fabled artists of the Canyon’s past while carving out a unique niche for Mr. Wilson among the new practitioners of this classic style. So sit back on the grass and let Jonathan Wilson transport you from the sweltering shores of the Atlantic to the cool embrace of the Canyon.
Deep Dark Woods’ brand of brooding roots music may seem an odd fit for the sunny waterside carnival that is Newport. But, judging by the timeless hymns, dirge-like rockers, and tales of lost love on the band’ latest album, the Juno award nominated The Place I Left Behind, these gothic canucks would be welcome on any stage. Indeed, while the band’s output tends towards the darker side of nature, they pointedly refuse to wallow in misery. Instead, like every good Americana (or is that Canadiana here) act, they mine the shadowy corners of traditional sounds to create a pastiche that is simultaneously melancholy and uplifting. It might be just what the breath of cool forest air you need after a day or two in the Newport sun.
Man. Myth. Legend. An artist who found massive critical acclaim in the early in the 70's only to dissapear completely for several decades - or so it seemed. Now the subject of the documentary Searching For Sugarman, Rodriguez is back and bring is brand of laid back pyscedelic soul to audiences around the country. This afternoon he makes a stop at the Museum Stage and trust us when we say that this is one set you DEFINITELY don't want to miss.