It’s Monday morning and Bones Fest XX is over. The 43 participants from 19 states and one Canadian Province have scattered back to their homes. Except for this report the paper work is done, unless Steve Wixson thinks of something. He did: I forgot to publicly thank Jim Conner for the inspiration of the BFXX T-shirts. He prophesied that the shirt would have a picture of the world with twenty bones coming out like rays of the sun. Thanks, Jim.
A word about Steve Wixson. He is the background guiding hand that makes these festivals come to life. The Host’s guide book, time line and the periodic email that says it is time for this or that; keeps things moving along. Between his help and the advice of Steve Brown, the stress is of my own making.
Dealing with a group of musicians can be like herding cats. But those cats can make a bones fest purr. Friday and Saturday were filled with seminars and public performances. Friday morning, Bill Vits and Steve Brown hosted a seminar on aspects of bones playing. Several RBS members entertained at the senior living center. Some of us went to a nature center where we taught 71 campers, aged 8 to 14. Bill Vits managed to keep their attention. On Saturday Kenny Wolin and Time Reilly hosted a class that focused on doing a “Shanty Sing”, tying in the old time sailor’s life and the bones.
Choosing “the” highlight of Saturday nights show is difficult, but here are some of them: Rowan Corbett and IlyAMy; the improvement of Stan Van Hagen; Kenny Wolin’s disco routine; Steve Brown and Mitch Boss with their usual antics; Ron and Marie Bruschi waltzing; Bob Goulet and Lynda Bertrand displaying a French Canadian bones duel; Dennis Riedesel’s bones light show; and our happiest bones player, Jeremy Brown, whose Superman act brought down the house. The last jam session of the fest kept us going until after 1:30 AM. The Sunday morning breakfast was bittersweet as we said our goodbyes to family for another year. Gerry Hines