[Harp-L] SPAH 2016 was FABULOUS
Tue Aug 16 15:57:54 EDT 2016
With the diminishing availability of great trio players, SPAH turned
toward featuring the harmonica in many ways this year which were firsts for the
convention. Great singer/songwriters such as Dave Moore and Bill Barrett,
and a folk rock group The High South Band were prominent in the main stage
mix... the crowd both young and old seemed to really enjoy them. Hats off
to Paul Davies for the wonderful lineup!
Not that anyone has forgotten about the P in SPAH, Preservation of the
founding traditions is foremost on the minds of the entire staff. Not only are
we still featuring trio's as much as availability permits, we have been
actively looking for ways to use the chord and bass everywhere possible in
less traditional settings, such as was in evidence all week long, it was a
thing of beauty.
An afternoon show by Paul Osher -from Muddy Waters band- was an absolute
gem for the blues crowd, as was Johnny Sansone's show on the big stage Thurs
Buddy Greene and Todd Parrott did us proud throughout the week, Todd
absolutely KILLED his set in the Tuesday evening International Blues Blowoff!
Convention staples such as Brendan Power, Jimi Lee and PT Gazell were
The youth program was in full swing, these young people are the future of
our organization. One crop seems to have 'graduated' and are now helping
those who are coming in behind them. Look for these graduates to be appearing
in evening shows and on the stage at the IBB as the years roll by.
Once again Manfred Wewers put together a great lineup of seminars, to say
there was something for everyone would be an understatement. The Joe
Filisko afternoon teach-in was once again stacked with world class instructors,
including Robert Bonfiglio, David Barrett, Ronnie Shellist, Rob Roy Parnell
and around ten others of equal repute.
Thanks to this years host club Alamo Hoot, a BIG infusion of local color
was evident throughout. Mariachi players in the lobby, Spanish dancers at
the ladies breakfast, accordion players and more reflected the rich San
Antonio culture. Tours floated down the Riverwalk and went by bus out into the
Texas Hill Country.
Attendance numbers were high, vendors reported strong sales, the mood was
upbeat, and music was everywhere. Final show on Sat night was the Madcat
Trio... yes, not a misprint. The guy who broke the diatonic barrier at SPAH
all those years ago was up there as the lead in a trio, we have indeed
come full circle.
Staging and Production - SPAH
Producer - International Blues Blowoff
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