A Production of The Folk Life ( Inc. 1976)
John McLaughlin
and Jamie Downs, Editors


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The Folk Life

The Digital Folk Life, Chapter II

Hello again. I just finished re-transcribing from an old issue of The Folk Life magazine the 1978 interview with Martin Carthy that's always been one of my pride-&-joys. There's a number of those interview transcripts -- some from old issues of TFL, others intended for publication, but which never saw the light of day, for one reason or another -- that I've been meaning to add to this web-page. They're obviously no longer news -- tho the Martin Carthy one may shed some sidewise light on the excellent notes to the 4-CD release of *The Carthy Chronicles* (Free Reed, May 2001), and I suppose the John Hartford interview, conducted under somewhat trying circumstances backstage at The Main Point in 1977, not long after I'd challenged John in print by dissing one of his Flying Fish LP's, as trivializing his gifts, which led to being challenged on his turf -- thank God for tape recorders and pre-written questions -- might have some passing news value, following his recent courageous passing away. The Taj Mahal interview, conducted not long after he'd returned from an early visit to Ghana and the Gambia, has that kind of somewhat dated but, for me at least, interesting slants on one of our finest African-American griots. The David Amram piece, a phone interview -- his dime -- when we were snowbound in upstate Pennsylvania following a car-wreck that almost derailed The Fo! lk Life before it fairly got underway (tho we did have our old friend Eugene O'Donnell already in print, which was something), was one of those "No More Walls" happy rants David's been famous for over the years. And so forth. Plenty to go on with, if energy and interest hold up. Because I recently retired from college teaching -- in December, 2000 -- and I've been loafing and inviting my soul for the past few months, following a separation-trip to Mexico that rinsed the dust of the academy off my feet. What next? Damned if I know. Just thought I'd check in, see how you were doing. I've been in touch with the people who run the "old boys" association for my Merchant Navy training ship, the Vindicatrix, near Bristol, where I first shipped out, to Montreal in 1956, and life is such a pleasure just now. I hope it is for you too. I hope this finds you as it leaves me, etc. Write soon, will you? Your host, courtesy of Jamie, his web-mistress: John McLaughlin ---

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