The 19th Annual Four Corners Folk Festival

This past weekend was the 19th Annual Four Corners Folk Festival here in Pagosa Springs.
Dan Appenzellar & Crista Munro have been bringing incredible talent to our little town since 1996, hosting some of the most talented artists in the world of Bluegrass, Americana and Folk music. This year was certainly no exception as the reviews rave!
Sarah Jarosz, The Oh Hello’s, Sam Bush, Tim O’Brien & Darrell Scott, Elephant Revival! All of these and more joined together on Reservoir Hill over Labor Day weekend to celebrate what we all love the most – MUSIC!
The term “folk music” originated in the 19th century, but is often applied to music that is much older than that. In the past it has had an association with music that was unknown, with no known composers, and oftentimes with a “lower class”. It has also been described as “music that has been transmitted and evolved by a process of oral transmission”, meaning that is has been passed along to generations and cultures of people through the performance of it (much like Old Wives Tales, I suppose).
A traditional definition of “folk music” is elusive. However there is no real clear definition for folk music, or folklore (much like trying to define “love”, I suppose).
Whatever words you might use to describe, define or transmit folk music, it is an important and influential movement here in Pagosa Springs. Our environment, our landscape and our culture lend themselves to musical inspiration and the rebirthing of traditional expressions in music and art of all genres and mediums. These reasons and more are why the Four Corners Folk Festival continues to be successful, attracting more and more locals and visitors each year. Last I heard, more than 3500 festies were in attendance. All up there on Reservoir Hill. Together. That is a beautiful thing. Here is another beautiful thing that happened as a result of this event, per Dan & Crista,
“I just popped a check in the mail to United Way of Southwest Colorado for $1942 – the total of the beer & wine tips last weekend. Thank you all for your generosity! The money will go toward helping dozens of organizations and individuals in our region.”
WOW. Thank YOU for your generosity.
This, to me, is what music does for people. Music brings us together, fills our hearts with joy, lends each one of us a voice that is not our own but speaks our minds; music encourages, inspires, and lifts us up. I am not a musician, just a nerdy fan and a faithful student.
I had the opportunity to chat in the studio with a couple of the amazing artists who performed at the festival this year. Very special thanks to Beth Wood & Baskery for taking time to come in.
Beth Wood is currently up in Sisters, Oregon playing The Sisters Americana Folk Festival this weekend. Lovely woman, incredibly talented, soft and strong all at the same time. She truly is a modern day troubadour and believer in song. If you missed her live on KWUF, I am sorry. It was a gift to us, as we heard her singing her heart out, doing a live performance of “Late Night Radio” off the same-titled album (per my request!) and showcasing one of the songs from her most recent album “Sometimes Love”. Check her out. I was moved to misty eyes and almost cried. Instead I accepted her hug and asked that the Goddess bless her. Then she was on her way. A short 30 minutes I will never forget.
Baskery took time to come in on a Saturday, just a few hours before they took the stage. This sister trio from Sweden was more than I could have hoped for. Kind, sincere, honest, perfectly human. We had coffee (2 pots!) before we went on the air and talked about Jimmy Hendrix, punk rock, our parents, sibling issues, living in America. Then we clicked on the mic and they spoke eloquently and purely about their passion for music, their evolution as a band, their new record deal with Warner LA and staying true to themselves. I was awestruck as they sang an a Capella version of an old Swedish song (in Swedish!) called “Beyond Sorrow”. Then I had to let them go. I was humbled by their appreciation of our radio station, by their request to take a t-shirt for their father who at one time was their drummer and who still resides in Sweden. I was humbled in many ways by these lovely unpretentious ladies. Their new album is called “Little Wild Life”. You should definitely pick it up asap. Find them anyway you can. Here’s the link to their website:
Thank you, Greta, Stella & Sunneva. I send you kisses.
For everyone I didn’t get to speak with (most of you), thank you for doing what you do. Never for a moment think it’s all for naught. Music saves lives, Love is your prize. You are our heroes.