2007 Ohio River Valley Folk Festival

Snider returns for encore in May

Second year brings new sponsors,
more festival offerings

By Konnie McCollum
Staff Writer

(May 2007) – Entering its second year, the Ohio River Valley Folk Festival will offer an even bigger event than last year, organizers say. Armed with new sponsors and a title sponsor in Res-Care Inc., organizers are bringing back the very popular Todd Snider to headline Saturday’s musical lineup. That alone, should have crowds filling the riverfront on May 18-19, says festival co-chairman John Walburn.

Todd Snider

Photo provided

Oregon native Todd Snider brings his
quirky humor and music back to Madison
in May as the headliner for the
second annual Folk Festival.

“Snider, who offers a lot of thought-provoking, yet humorous music, is back this year because of popular demand. People really loved him last year,” said Walburn.”
Through his music, Snider provides a truthful commentary on life today and gives folk music fans something to smile about. “He makes you laugh at yourself and makes you think,” said Walburn.
The lineup also features The Duhks, another popular group that will conclude Friday night’s entertainment offerings.
In addition to music, the festival features folk storytellers and demonstrations, as well as food vendors and beer and wine tents. Spectators can bring blankets or lawn chairs to sit along the riverfront and enjoy the show. The event is organized and operated by a committee of the Madison Area Convention and Visitors Bureau and is the first of three festivals it will manage this year. The others are the Madison Ribberfest in mid-August and the Madison Chautauqua Festival of Art in late September. The tourism office also produces a holiday home tour around the Christmas season.
Snider is a wry and honest, yet funny performer. His recent “The Devil You Know” album made the Rolling Stones top 50 albums of the year. His songs speak candidly of the downtrodden, the outsiders of every land, and those brave enough to face the world despite hardship.

2007 Ohio River Valley Folk Festiva Logo

Entertainment Schedule

Friday, May 18
6 p.m.: Chestnuts
7 p.m.: Tracey Grammer
9 p.m.: The Duhks
Saturday, May 19
Noon: Ragged Arse Tinkers
1:30 p.m.: Rusty Bladen
3 p.m.: Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band
5 p.m.: Tim Grimm
7 p.m.: Cheryl Wheeler
9 p.m.: Todd Snider
• Admission wristbands: $10. Available at the Madison Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, 601 W. First St., Madison or online.
• Information: (812) 265-2956 or 1-800-559-2956.
• Website: www.ohiorivervalleyfolkfestival.com or www.visitmadison.org.

Snider was born in Portland, Ore., but after high school, he moved to California and learned to play the harmonica. His brother, living in Austin, Texas, thought he might be able to get a job in a band, so he sent him a plane ticket. It was at that point that Snider decided he would dedicate his life to music.
“I’ve been listening to him for years, since his first album, and I still enjoy his work,” said Walburn.
A high-energy acoustic group hailing from Manitoba, Canada, The Duhks (pronounced just like the bird) will close Friday night’s schedule at 9 p.m. The Duhks combine a wide range of music in their performances, including folk, Celtic, gospel and zydeco.
The group of five young Canadians, who have been recently nominated for a Grammy Award, has been riveting audiences and winning fans across the continent for about four years.
“College-aged music lovers will love this lively quintet who will be sure to have people on their feet,” said Walburn.
The Duhks employ a fiddle, clawhammer banjo and all manner of unconventional percussion into a Duhks-alone blend of many different types of music that have also won them a Juno Award, two Folk Alliance awards and an Americana Music Association nomination for Best Emerging Artists.
Preceding The Duhks will be another leading voice in the world of folk music, Tracey Grammer, who will take the stage at 7 p.m. She has reached the hearts of audiences all across North America with the stories she weaves into her songs. Her voice has been described by many as “distinctive and simply beautiful.”
Along with her late partner, David Carter, she released an astounding three albums in four years, quickly reaching international acclaim.
Along with her amazing voice, Grammer is an accomplished musician in the guitar, mandolin and violin. “Many people will recognize some of her work because it is widely popular,” said Walburn.

Tom Cunningham

"Tom Foolery"
by Tom Cunningham

Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band is sure to entertain with its vintage acoustic sound. They use a washboard and drums to perform their rootsy style of music that combines Delta Blues and Southern gospel. Their performance begins at 3 p.m. Saturday.
Other major performers traveling to Madison to participate in the folk festival include Tim Grimm, who takes center state at 5 p.m. Saturday and Cheryl Wheeler, who follows Grimm at 7 p.m.
“Grimm is another nationally known folk artist who will thrill the crowd,” said Walburn. Grimm uses the flavor and roots of his Southern Indiana heritage to capture the hearts of fans.
Wheeler has been at the top of folk polls for years. “She has a great sense of humor, but performs really moving, thought-provoking songs,” said Walburn. She has been recognized by numerous organizations, including Country Music Television, for her combination of stories and humor in her songs that capture her audience and connect with them at their roots.
Several local favorites will round out the music scheduled for the Ohio River Valley Folk Festival. The Chestnuts will start the program at 6 p.m. Friday, while the Ragged Arse Tinkers, the house band for Thomas Family Winery in Madison, will kick off Saturday’s lineup at noon with a lively blend of Celtic and Cajun music. Hometown favorite Rusty Bladen will delight the crowd at 1:30 p.m. Saturday.

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