Stay in Tune vol #8
By Luthier Patrick Podpadec
It’s kind of strange sitting behind this keyboard talking to who knows who? And to how many people may be reading these articles. It could be ten or ten thousand or more. You never know. The Voice”s articles are presented on their website www.northcoastvoice.com so it has the potential of reaching millions of readers all over the world. WOW! It’s pretty cool to think that someone in Germany may be reading about things that are happening in are little “neck of the woods”.
Speaking of things that are happening, I wanted to mention that this is the time of the summer that lends itself to many area festivals that generally hosts a very wide variety of genre’s of music and food. One of these festivals is a newer one that is on it’s third year .It’s called “Music Along the River”. It’s held at the Harpersfield Bridge. The park is owned and maintained by the Ashtabula Metro park system. This year it has expanded to a two day event being held on Aug.22 & 23rd from 1 to 5 each day.
Being that this is the third year for the festival, the promoter of the event, Mr. Scott Burgett, is hoping for a larger turnout than previous years. Last year they seemed to have run out of parking on the south side of the river (due to the turnout of musicians and friends) so they are encouraging attendees to experience even more music and food on the north side of the river this year. Also, there will be a few small vendors from various artists and interesting workshops from yours truly Look for the table that has a sign with “Wood-n-Strings” on it. I will be setting up a small table trying to introduce some of my repair techniques. And possibly having a few instruments and pieces and parts for sale or trade. I will be there on both days willing to answer any question that I’m able about instrument repair or maintenance.
Scott revealed to me that he hoped that the event could be a seen as learning or educational experience for all of the players, listeners, and new comers to the music world. Of course seasoned professionals and weekend pickers are also welcome. I am hoping that my workshops and others that may be given, can help with that learning process. Last year I attended for my first time just as a player and had a wonderful time playing and meeting new and talented musicians. There seemed to be a good variety of different instruments ranging from the guitar to banjos to mandolins ,fiddles ,dulcimers, psaltry’s and more. The music seemed to include, “bluegrass”, some “folk”, Some “traditional” and much more. This year I’m hoping that it will grow even larger so that the people of this area can see and hear some of the truly good talent that is out there. With a little help of spreading the word maybe we can accomplish that goal. Be sure to tell all of your friends, relatives, and others!
As I was putting thoughts together about what I might bring or do at this upcoming music fest I came across some ideas of workshops that may be interesting to some of the readers, musicians and aspiring repairpersons. I’m hoping, that if all things go well I will be able to have a small bit of electricity available to me so that I might bring some electrical devices. A sander or a small steamer would be nice to demonstrate some methods of repairs, such as building a new bone nut or saddle for an acoustic guitar, or removing a neck from a guitar by the use of steam. Of course if the electrical “God” does not happen to show up I will try to have some other “all natural’ methods of repairs to keep everybody happy.
I was looking through my collection of new and used parts to try to figure out what people might be interested in. The more I looked, the more confused I got. I finally had to give up. Each and everything that I picked up I found myself experiencing a small amount of “separation anxiety”. As if I wouldn’t be able to part with this “part” or that “part”. I know as soon as I sell or trade it I will need it for the repair that I have been saving it for years for. OH NO! What was I to do? I thought , if I sell this thing I won’t have it any more.. Will I be able to live with that? I know that sounds silly, but I have a hard time removing myself from my “musical toys” I’m sure I'm not alone, but that still does not make it any easier. I guess I’m just going to have to toughen up for the good of all the people and finally get rid of some of that “stuff”.For no other reason than to make room for more “stuff” in the future!
I also would like to encourage anyone to bring any stringed instrument that you might have( in any condition !) to be possibly assessed or appraised or just looked at or traded or whatever.I’m sure that someone will be interested in it. Until I see you again, please “stay in tune” and have a fun and prosperous summer!
Patrick from Wood-n-Strings