We join wife and husband Avant Folk duo Shanti and Buck Curran, better known as Arborea for their final tour entry. Read all the entries for this guest blog here.
Day Six – Dallastown, Pennsylvania and a return to Philadelphia
A number of us were suppossed to play at a Festival in Central PA the following day after the tribute…a lineup Shanti and I had been asked to curate by the Festival promoter. The festival lineup included Diane Cluck, Marian McLaughlin, Daniel Bachman, Ryley Walker, Arborea, and Herbcraft. But on Monday of that week, the promoters, citing rain, had cancelled the event at the last minute. It put all of us out in a big way and left us scrambling to organize last minute shows. Daniel and Ryley ended up playing in Lancaster, PA. We secured a last minute show in Dallastown, a small town in Central, PA about two hours west of Philadelphia.
Driving through Amish Country on our way to the last show of the tour and peering into a distant past….
To get there, we drove through the pastoral rolling green hills and fields of corn of the Pennsylvania Amish. Yet another example of feeling like you are traveling back in time…. Driving past the Amish riding down the country roads in their horse drawn 19th century carriages and clothed in traditional dress. The name of the venue in Dallastown was a bit deceiving…’Beer Mongers’. We wondered if it would be a rowdy roadhouse hidden somewhere in the countryside. Shanti felt a little uneasy driving up to the place, but I assured her it was a nice new place and the owner Josh Braun was really wonderful and so gracious to pull together a show for us at the last minute. The main room has two pool tables near the entrance and on the opposite end of the room is the stage. A long rectangular bar is dead center in the room and stocked with craft ales from all over the US, Belgium, etc. There’s an adjacent room with a wall length cooler stocked with craft beers from all over the World. It’s a very classy and unique place…something Josh had dreamed up and after a lot of hard work, finally made it happen. His friends Kimon (who manages The Depot…another local venue), and David Forney (who runs sound for shows at The Depot) came to our rescue when we were having difficulty figuring out their portable sound system.
Our last show in Dallastown, PA, shared with some great people.
Playing in a small town like Dallastown is a great example of how, when you don’t have great expectations about a place,it can turn out to be some of the Best shows you ever play. The folks that were there to listen had never heard our music before, but were incredibly engaged and respectful. The sound ended up being perfect, and though we were tired from being on the road, we put all of our energy and soul into that show. After we performed we immediately sold several vinyl copies of our latest album and ended up staying for a while and having some great conversations. The only difficult part of the show was having to leave after midnight and doing another two hour drive back East to Philadelphia (to stay with Frank and Keanne again, who our daughter had stayed with that night). I was pretty exhausted and there was a lot of construction on the highway heading East. Thankfully there wasn’t really any traffic at that time of night. I think it was around 2:00am when we finally got home. Shanti and fallen asleep when we left the venue, so she was surprised to find we had arrived back in Germantown. Everybody was sleeping when we got back…so Shanti and I headed off to bed. It was close to 3:00am by that time. We had hopes of hitting the road at 11:00am as the drive home to Maine tomorrow would be about 9 hours and Shanti had a solo performance the following night…improvisational music she creates along with her friend Julie Gammon who does a Guided Meditiaton class.
Early Morning, before the long drive home. Shylah and James whisper ‘Good Morning’ to each other.
This part of the Diary is actually sliding into Monday, August 25th…day 7 of the tour. It was impossible getting up early to leave. It was a beautiful Sunny day and we ended up relaxing around the house and lounging around the yard. I got to spend some time playing my Sitar on the porch while Keanne colored Shylah’s hair. Keanne then took photos of Shanti and I with the sitar and their German Shepard Coltrane.
Impromptu band photo shoot by Photographer and dear friend Keanne Irwin. With the Sitar that was gifted on the tour…
Later on Shanti and Keanne asked me to take some poetic photos of them together. It was the perfect way to end the tour and really it would mark the end of Summer as September was right around the corner.
A moment of eternal hello and goodbye, with my soul sister, Keanne Irwin. Until next time..
It’s always amazing how fast time flies…and to think only a month to the day, on July 25th, we were a featured act at the Fano Free Folk Festival on the Island of Fano off the coast of Denmark. The Fano Festival takes place in the small quaint village of Sonderho. The festival was one of the most beautiful gatherings we’ve ever been a part of. We met and performed alongside wonderful artists from Denmark, England, Italy, Poland, Turkey, Egypt, Germany, and Austria. The people who organize the festival are wonderful…and all the people who attended, were among the most attentive and spiritual audiences we’ve ever had the pleasure of being with.
We also had the opportunity at Fano to see our dear friends Paolo and Sonia again…having just been with them in Italy in October of 2013. Paolo is a wonderful guitarist from Italy who records and tours under the name Laboule. He supported our shows in October and also performed at the Fano Festival.
Thinking of time passing by so quickly, we’ve organized a trip for this November, to visit friends and tour in Ireland to celebrate our 17th Wedding Anniversary. We have shows booking in Dublin at Whelans (November 4th), Galway at Roisin Dubh (November 7th), and we are working on booking a show in Cork for November 6th or the 8th. We’re headed back to Italy in the Spring (and our first shows in Germany) to do more shows with Paolo and Sonia. We’re also looking at doing shows in Poland and Denmark with some musicians and new friends we made at the Fano Festival. By next Summer Shanti and I will have been playing together for 10 years…It’s all been an amazing journey!