Ten days back from the 32nd Annual Frank Brown International Songwriters’ Festival has given me some time to absorb a portion of the awesomeness of this event. I CAN begin to describe the grandness of the FBIS Festival, but beginning is about as far as I’ll get.

I left the ‘ville on Sunday afternoon anticipating a stop in some state park somewhere to camp along the way. Eh, good plan so far, I suppose. Well, I ending up camping in a truck stop in Montgomery, Alabama just to catch the sunrise at the grave of Hiram King Williams. That story is in an earlier blog. http://www.da6dmusic.com/blog/a_monday_in_montgomery_alabama/

On to Perdido Key, FL.

My first couple of evenings were spent at the Big Lagoon State Park where I fed mosquitos and picked with a neighboring camper. The famous Blue Angels were also nearby and flying over in those beautiful jets. It was often hard to determine if it was a jet flying over or mosquitos coming by for a meal.

The next few days brought to me the realization that there are only four hours a day to sleep. I surely didn’t want to miss anything. 10:00am would bring a few to life in the legendary Riverhouse across from the Flora-Bama. I would stir at the first sound of a guitar being tuned or a voice telling a story. That was my cue to start listening…and learning.

“The Table” at the Riverhouse, is somewhat of an altar. As a table, it would seat 8 to 10 people, but as pickers and singers and writers gather around throughout the day and into the night, even into the early hours of the next day, the circle expanded. Some sit with paper and pencil, cellphones and iPads. Others join with guitars, resonators, harmonicas, bass and voice. Others come with ears just to listen to the “offerings” laid out for all to enjoy. The jams and “pulls” at the Riverhouse are nothing less than perfect homage to the “song.” That was the focus of all of it. The Song.

I would be amiss not to thank Joe Gilchrist, Linda Ponder, Bobbie Perry, Smokey Joe Peoples, Dave McCormick, Chris “Moondawg” Hall, Cass Hunter, Nikki Talley, Shane Locklear, Buzz M. Kiefer, Jason Sharp, Bruce Wawrzyniak, oh my, The Flora-Bama Main Listening Room, The New Malibu Lounge, Lillian’s Pizza, La Brisa Restaurant, whomever carried out the garbage, washed the dishes and kept toilet paper in the bathroom, the guy that didn’t run over me in the parking lot, …Well, I’m sure you get my point. I am grateful to everyone that was part of this experience.

Oh, let’s do this again, real soon, eh?

Peace y'all,


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