Back to the chilly winds of East PA, and there are so many people to thank for making Hatterasity Bluegrass such a joyous event, but I wanted to give it a shot. Version two with corrections and additions will come after I get a metric crapload of far wood home.
Anyhow, Thanks to Noah and Alison Deihl and the entire clan. Naoh was the first to make the trek to Hatteras, to play back in 2012. It was awesome! All the laughs and love and the sterling music would have been impossible if not for the help and encouragement of to Rosie Mayo and Cliff and Debbie Hodge. Always steady in any weather, Dennis Robinson and Holly Austin from Midgett and Hatteras Realty did a yoeman’s job on lodging arrangements for the musicians. Allen Burrus and the good folks at Conners, Lee Robinson General Store, Frisco Woods, Sun Realty, Outer Beaches Realty, Capt. Ernie Foster, The Sea Gull Hotel and Harbor House Seafood all were generous in donations. And Sandy and Dennis, and Tracy, together with Chef Dennis R, fed the masses, and they were happy.
Mark Clifford, sainted bride Stephanie and son Taylor were brilliant. They made the civic center sound like Carnegie Hall. And the lads are awesome pickers. Heck, you couldn’t swing a banjo without smacking some musical savant or another, and the late night jams were off the hook.
In the week following the event, I’ve had a few moments to reflect on what I learned during the week-long celebration of all things bluegrass and all things Hatteras. One of the volunteers was heard to remark, “I’m just trying to get my head around this whole bluegrass thing.” Of course anyone ever abducted by bluegrass aliens knows that bluegrass is not just a kind of music but a way of life. So is being born and raised on a little tiny strip of sand. This particular individual was struck hard by how the audience and musicians just seemed like one big family, and it surprised her.
I’d like to think it was because it reminded her of the way things were in Hatteras before all the flap-doodle began. Anyway, she loves the music and the people that make and listen to the music very much, as do all the people who attended. I couldn’t have asked for anything better.
With the possible exception of the man who didn’t let me quit: Chad Darou. I learned so much about myself, and much of it was even, well, very nice! I can’t say enough about musicians like Jesse Burdick and his runnin’ buddy Zach Johnson, who also taught me some valuable things about confidence and kismet, as it were. And Billy “Rainbow Jesus” Gilmore, and Anthony and Jillian Hannigan, and Frank Solivan and his fabulous band, and especially to Liza Darou for lending me a baritone. I asked for a tenor, but never mind that. Lynda and Patti were spell-binding and were very impressed with Molasses Creek, performing as a due on account of hurricane. Banjo Island did a fine set on Sunday, and Hickory Project closed out the festivities with Minor Swing.
We never even played Caravan!
Oh, the musicians all played to their top notches, I can tell you, and if a couple of the tribe hadn’t hung around on Monday, I would have been very low.
Dang. That’s enough to make me tear up, son! So this Hatterasity adventure has been a blessing full of laughter and great music, savoring old friendships and relishing new ones, and about the adventure of learning new ways to play and new songs to sing.