Nightcrawler: Folk Tales

The hills of Hillsdale, N.Y. will be alive this weekend, July 27-29, when the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival touches down on Dodd’s Farm and unleashes dozens of performances by the genres’ top practitioners on the masses.

Not surprisingly, event publicist Anne Saunders reports that several Valley-based acts of note have helped Falcon Ridge reach new heights in this, the festival’s 24th installment. The most obvious would be Nerissa and Katryna Nields, returning for a 17th consecutive year to perform two separate sets—on the Family Stage starting at 1:30 p.m. and on the Main Stage proper at 4:10 p.m.—on Sunday, July 29.

Other Western Mass. residents flocking to Falcon include Eilen Jewell and Boxcar Lillies, the latter of which secured a spot in the acoustic tent on Saturday at 4 p.m. and promise to grace as many campfire jams as will have them throughout the weekend.

Sadly, the 2012 festival also marks the tenth anniversary of the passing of Dave Carter, an artist who died in an auto accident in Hadley just one week prior to his scheduled 2002 Falcon Ridge performance.

“With only a few days to prepare, we decided not to replace Dave’s main stage set (with partner Tracy Grammer) with another artist, but organized a tribute instead,” Saunders recalls. “This year, we plan on doing another multi-artist tribute to Dave in honor of the 10 years, and Tracy will be hosting it.”

Tickets for the 2012 Falcon Ridge Folk Festival range from $40-$123, depending on days attending, camping/no camping and other variables. For more information and the full entertainment schedule, kindly point your browser to


Closer to home, folk-Americana-pop-rocker Mindy Smith ( rolls into the Iron Horse July 26 in support of her fifth studio effort, Closer.

Perhaps spurred by her recent successes in media licensing (her duet with longtime friend Daniel Tashian was featured in the 2011 Paul Rudd film Our Idiot Brother, and other Smith tracks have graced small screen shows including Grey’s Anatomy, Six Feet Under and Smallville), the Long Island native says that this new batch of tunes comes on the heels of some serious self-reflection cum intellectual property protection.

“I stepped back and regained control of the things that I could, which were publishing as well as masters and recordings,” she explains. “People don’t realize that unless you own those masters, you really don’t own anything. You get to own your personality, I suppose, but that doesn’t pay the bills, necessarily.”

Tickets for Mindy Smith’s 7 p.m. Iron Horse show are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Israeli-born/current Brooklyn resident Rosi Golan gets the opening nod for this one.


While we’re (Iron) Horsin’ around… the fact that Wednesday, Aug. 1 marks what would have been the 70th birthday of Jerry Garcia has not been lost on the booking powers that be. In fact, they’re bringing in no less than the likes of the Martha’s Vineyard-based Grateful Dread to celebrate said occasion on the fateful day.

As the name implies, the Dread-heads infuse ska and reggae beats behind Grateful Dead classics. Members of the band have performed with the Allman Brothers, Carly Simon and The David Letterman Band, to name a choice few, and drummer Tom Major is a founding member of World Beat. Tickets are $10 in advance, $13 at the door. Doors open at 8:30 p.m.


Last but not least, several of the area’s top Beatles tribute acts will “come together” this Saturday, July 28 at Ives Park in Connecticut.

Danbury Fields Forever promises 10 hours of music from 10 faux Fab Fours, including The Oh-Nos (performing obscure tracks from both the band and respective solo careers), MerseyBeat Mania (famed NYC tribute), and Paul McCartney lookalike/soundalike One Sweet Dream, among others. For ticket prices, full schedule and more information, visit

Send correspondence to Nightcrawler, P.O. Box 427, Somers, CT 06071; fax to (860) 394-4262 or email

Author: Gary Carra

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