Monday, August 26, 2013

Hobofest: Saranac Lake’s Celebration of American Roots

untitled-186The fifth annual Hobofest takes place Sunday, September 1, 2013 at the Union Depot in Saranac Lake.  Hobofest celebrates American roots culture and the independent spirit with free musical performances from noon til late.

Chef John Varga of Eat and Meet will be at the grill. Blue Line Brewery will serve a signature “Hobo Brew” in the Depot building in the afternoon. Children’s activities range from Sunita Halasz’s workshop table to the Adirondack Carousel right next door. A large tent will protect the crowd from the weather, and Russ Feher’s Fine Line Audio will run the sound.

In addition to the main-stage offerings, Vermont Joy Parade will board the 1pm Adirondack Scenic Railroad and play a round-trip gig to Lake Placid and back. Upon their return they’ll join the Shamrock “regulars” for an inclusive “open jam” in the Depot Building. Attendees are invited to join the circle.

Past performers return to this year’s Hobofest in new configurations; Thick as Thieves and James & Jane are both side projects of the lead-vocalists from the Blind Owl Band. They will hold court early in the day. Tall County, a trio spun off from the momentum of the North Country/Brooklyn hybrid band, Frankenpine, will bring “stripped-down songs on strung-up instruments.” The Biscuit Rollers, led by regular Hobofest opener Steve Langdon, will close this fifth annual Hobofest night, joined by Le Groove rhythm section, Rick Weber and Dan Spada and friends who say they will “really rock it this year.”

Annabelle Chvostek, a founding member of the Wailin’ Jenny’s, will travel with her trio from Toronto to play Hobofest. Her latest, Juno-nominated release, “Rise,” takes a decades-old art form, the protest song, and completely re-imagines it for a new era of activism. Annabelle has performed at Bluseed Studios and records with Saranac Lake’s Beehive Productions.

Mamie Minch, a guitarist and singer with a voice and sensibility well beyond her years, brings authentic country blues from Brooklyn. She’s a founder of The Roulette Sisters—who played Hobofest 2010—and also is a member of the trio Midnight Hours with Jolie Holland and JC Hopkins. She’ll be backed by local musicians, Kyle Murray and Chris Shacklett of Lucid.

The Fox & the Feather, an eclectic ensemble of Paul Smiths students, will open the day’s festivities at noon. Power-duo, Mouthbreather, will rock the mid-afternoon with their last area gig before their relocation to Portland, Oregon. Danny & Caroline will travel from Brooklyn with well-crafted pop tunes, just a week before their North Country wedding. Willem Tissot, backed by Shamim Allen, will regale us with songs about the carefree aspects of a beggar’s life. Stoneground Express will return with an electric blues set, and Dan King of Tupper Lake will captivate the audience with his original songs.

Hobofest is a project of ASCI, Adirondack Sustainable Communities, and programmed by Seward’s Folly Productions. This event is made possible by the generous support of local businesses, individuals, and NYSCA, the New York State Council on the Arts.

More information can be found on the website www.hobofest.com.

Photo by Laura Carbone provided.

Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff

Stories written under the Almanack's Editorial Staff byline are drawn from press releases and other notices.

To have your news noticed here at the Almanack contact our Editor John Warren at adkalmanack@gmail.com.


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One Response

  1. Charlie says:

    My uncle was a hobo before he joined the marines during World War 2.My dad’s brother used to hop freight trains from Brooklyn to out west in the 1930’s.You could get away with it back then (much moreso than now)…unless you got caught by the railroad police who were hard-asses according to my dad.Back then they knew which trains to hop and where they were going. My dad says about his brother, “If only he would have shared his hobo stories before he died,he could have written a book!”

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