I had been traveling with two friends. The trip was supposed to have been several weeks of hitch hiking around Europe.
We ride-shared from California to New York, took a ship from New York to Southhampton, England. We traveled to Winchester, then to London, to Oxford through Wales to Ireland and back to London. Somewhere along the way I decided I didn’t want to travel any longer with the two friends — one of my first lessons on the importance of choosing good travel partners.
They continued on to Amsterdam. I had a few days in London until I could catch a plane home so I spent the time wandering around the city by myself.
I caught a performance of “Hair” at the Shaftesbury Theatre. As a native San Franciscan coming from living in the Haight-Ashbury, it seemed kind of silly. There was some audience gasping at the nudity. They obviously had never experienced a be-in in Golden Gate Park. I did like some of the tunes.
On July 5, I was doing more wandering when I saw crowds of people streaming into a park. I wanted to see what was going on. Within minutes of my seeing the stage and realising it was a concert, hundreds of white butterflies were released and filled the air.
Our friend and musical colleague Scott died yesterday, November 26.
He was an exceptionally gifted fiddler, dedicated to the Irish/Celtic traditional music community.
We met him many years ago through our mutual friend Roxanne Oliva, who was his musical partner and, as time passed, his longtime caregiver.
The best way I can think of to honor him is by sharing his playing.
Here is a set of hornpipes and reels from the album ” 水精 Water Spirit ” which he recorded with Junji Sirota (guitar) and Robin Petrie (hammered dulcimer).
Walsh’s – The Knotted Cord – Green Groves Of Erin – The Flowers Of Redhill
Go mbeidh neart ceoil ann cibé áit a bhfuil tú anois, ár gcara.
(May there be plenty of music wherever you are now, our friend.)
I love this time of year. Oiche Shamhna, Halloween, El Dia de Los Muertos are all wonderful celebrations of life and death which totally appeal to me. In this short video, I talk about witches and hags and why we have reviled older women rather than give them credit for surviving past youth.