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I had the great pleasure of attending the Vancouver Folk Festival this weekend for the first time and I discovered a few new things, musically and otherwise. In fact, I was standing in the food line waiting for vegetarian curry for 45 minutes (hey, a good Indian boy like me waits for curry for as long as it takes!!!) and I chatted with two separate groups of folk fest die-hards who'd been attending the festival forever - it was something like their 30th season! Now, that's dedication.

Anyway, I got to see lots of excellent music including Vishwa Mohan Bhatt, the Indian slide guitar player (disciple of the great Ravi Shankar) which was a total trip. Sadly, I missed my pals in No Luck Club doing their fusion of beats and folk music from around the world on Sunday, but I did manage to take in a great workshop on the Saturday afternoon.

It featured a fantastic lineup including Vancouver's "hick-hop" singer /songwriter Ridley Bent and also the ever popular Leslie Feist, known to most as simply Feist. Now, as some of you may know, I was living in Calgary for ten years before moving here to Vancouver six months ago, so I remember hanging out and sharing stages with Leslie when she was in a rocking Calgary outfit called Placebo. That was sometime ago, but really I haven't seen her perform in forever, so it was really cool to see her play.

I love that thing she does with the loop pedal, layering her guitars and vocals. She also played the coolest, old small bodied guitar which I think was just a cheap guitar, but she made it sing. She even managed to get everyone singing along on the very well known song Mushaboom later that night on the mainstage. I'm not sure what a Mushaboom is exactly, but I like the way it sounds.

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NMC Track of the Day for July 24, 2006 - Feist "Mushaboom"

I had the great pleasure of attending the Vancouver Folk Festival this weekend for the first time and…

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Toque
#1 posted by
Toque
on Jul 24, 2006
V.M. Bhatt must have been a treat. I was lucky enough to catch a recital from Ustad Zakir Hussain on tablas* at a San Jose, C auditorium hosting the Ali Akbar College of North Indian Classical Music event. (*rare these days, as I understand, i.e. N. American appearances.) http://aacm.org/

"Mushaboom" helped me ease into my Monday, though. Something about this cut is watery and yet still upbeat. Feist: A complex music-maker with her own style of devotional followers, perhaps?
Tariq Hussain
#2 posted by
Tariq Hussain
on Jul 24, 2006
Yeah, I think she's got her fair share of fans. It was also interesting to check out the link to the Ali Akbar College in California which you included in your post. I never knew such a thing existed! Very cool.
Toque
#3 posted by
Toque
on Jul 24, 2006
Woof, I posted pretty early in my day. Forgot to mention the obvious contrast between the two venues: an audtorium in San Jose ain't Folkfest by a long shot. And there was no curry to be found. Ustad Z.H. was amazing though, he played the rain on the tablas, which made for a solid thirty-minute story-piece. I'm told his playful, talkative mood that night was rare for his appearances. Though, I would have loved to have seen him in San Francisco's Stern Grove park for one of his collaborations with that Bill Laswell project he played in, Tabla Beat Science.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000069B11/103-7567805-5650202?v=glance&n=5174

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zakir_Hussain_(musician)

uh ... I love Feist! (yessss, way to bring it home -- eye-roll.)
Tariq Hussain
#4 posted by
Tariq Hussain
on Jul 24, 2006
I should have gone to see Zakir Hussain when he was here in Vancouver, but alas, I missed it. I did see Ravi Shankar though, quite a few years ago in Calgary which was pretty wild.
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