Hello, RBS members! I need to start out by saying that it was an absolute blessing to be able to host Bones Fest XIX. Throughout the weekend I was reminded of what an incredible community this is. I believe it was Mitch Boss who said to me, “This is the only place you’ll go where everyone you meet just wants to figure out what you’re doing well.” We all seem to look for and to bring out the best in each other.
Bones Fest XIX officially kicked off on August 6th in the Tuscany Grille at the Clarion Hotel. My good friends, The Shedhoppers, brought their enthusiasm and played a wide range of material. A good bones player has rhythm, but even the best bones players seem to move on a time of their own. The phrase “herding cats” comes to mind.
We had workshops on Friday and Saturday. On Friday, Eric Fredenburgh would start a tune and we would send it around the room pass-off style. The Shedhoppers had a workshop on Saturday.
Bones Fest XIX was dedicated to the memory of Walt Watkins and Jerry Mescher. In my welcome message for the program I said that “the connections we make and the impact we have on others lives are at least as important as the music we play”. Steve Wixson put together excellent video presentations of Walt and Jerry. We closed this time with a massive pass-off. These two Bones Ambassadors live on in the vibrant traditions they helped instill in us.
One of the things that I have treasured in my bones fest experiences has always been the late night jam sessions and Bones Fest XIX was no different. The public concert at the Shepherdstown Opera House on Saturday was the capstone of the fest. In closing, I need to recognize a few key contributors.
One of these contributors was recognized during the fest – Steve Wixson. Steve is the very heart of the Rhythm Bones Society. Without his efforts I’m not sure that the RBS would exist. Bones fest is always an invigorating experience. It’s our community that makes it great. In closing, I’m borrowing the words of Everett Cowett, “May your bones be with you.” Skeff Flynn host Skeffington Flynn Stage at Shepherdstown Opera House(Continued on Page