Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Our last weekend in Florida

Here is a photo from our performance Saturday at the Orlando Museum of Art. We were helping out Franco with publicizing the International Harp Museum. Meko was playing a gig elsewhere.

Back to Ocala

We've been crisscrossing northern Florida for three weeks. The Appleton Museum in Ocala is an impressive edifice!

The museum houses quite a collection of Oriental and African art and artifacts. The contemporary gallery had a thought provoking exhibit of modern re-interpretations of old masters. There is a lovely theater inside that seats 250. We had a wonderful time presenting our "Songs of the Irish Poets" program on Sunday. Our new CD, Bards & Blarney, arrived in time for the concert. One of these days we won't be drop shipping to ourselves in the middle of a tour!

There are also some decorated horses left from the 2002 "Horse Fever" festival. These are life size steeds!

Meeting a friend on the road

After our concert we boomed 'er to Brunswick, Georgia, to have dinner with Yi-Lin Lee. We played for his wedding six years ago and he has remained in touch as he has moved from Hawaii to Washington state. He is currently undergoing training in Brunswick and invited us to join him for Mexican food. The address we had for the restaurant was out of date but after 30 minutes on the cell phone we finally were able to rendezvous and convoy to the right place.

On to Charleston

Monday we explored Charleston, South Carolina. This is a place we hadn't seen before. It was a rainy day, so we went through the public market, a structure several blocks long where vendors have booths for their wares.

There was glass jewelry, woodenware, silver jewelry, local spice mixes, amber jewelry, shawls, arachnid jewelry, and as many as a dozen Gullah basket makers. Many of the baskets were of innovative design.

The sun came out late in the day so we drove out to Folly Beach. It is similar to many other southern beaches: sand and shells, although there were a few stones.

An unplanned appearance at Tommy Condon's

Near the market was a great Irish pub. They have live music five nights a week (but not on Monday) we arranged to play a set of "Irish" music in the evening.

A lovely picture - but what does it mean?

Who wants to speculate about this evocative picture? There has got to be a song or story here. Let me know your ideas.

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A Visit to the IHM

We drove down to Orlando today to visit the International Harp Museum. We had an extraordinarily good time! The museum is quartered in a small villa and open by appointment only. When we called, Meko asked if Julia could bring her harp.
Here's Meko playing a familiar looking harp! In the background are some of the harps in the museum collection.
Here's something you won't see every day - Julia playing a pedal harp. She and Meko jammed on Pacobel, Greensleeves and some other tunes. They got rocking pretty good! We spent way more time than we had intended but had such a great time with Meko and franco, who has been restoring some of these instruments.In this photo the second harp from the left is mid-18th century, the third from the left is 19th century. The fouth harp is an American 19th century. There are also some early 20th century and even one 21st century harp in the collection.There are also some folk harps in the collection. In the foreground is a wire strung Triplett, behind is a Clark and a Troubadour II.

And now a trip to the movies!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Where's the warm weather?

...so we drove through whiteout conditions near Sturbridge to our first engagement near Hartford, CT. Then to Bethesda to visit Tom and Scottie Allen. Looked at the weather forcast - 16" for Richmond -- doesn't look good for a concert. Holed up in Bethesda with Tom & Scottie for three days. Thank you, thank you!!

Got to our second Richmond gig on Monday with no trouble, and we got to Winston-Salem on Tuesday. There was snow on the ground halfway to Hilton Head!

We finally got to Florida. We had a couple of great concerts in Summerfield and Beverly Hills and we've seen some out of the way corners, like Cedar Key. It has been rainy and cold. The car jumped the timing chain and is laid up in St Augustine waiting for parts.

Today, Presidents' Day, is the first warm day we have since we got here on February 3. Things are looking up!

Fauna Report

We have seen wild pigs, (live) armadillos, and a variety of beach birds. The flora report will follow.