Sunday, May 27, 2007

Ab goes to Hippie Jack's Farm

Ab the Flagman

WhitesCreek's Brother, Les

Somewhere in the "lost" part of Tennessee, between Monterey and Livingston, Jack Stoddart has a lovely farm on the bank of the Obey River. Jack is a noted photographer of Americana and maybe some bluegrass. You've seen his work...most likely a picture of John Hartford, or Doc Watson, or both. Or if you've been to any number of big time photo galleries or the home of someone too rich to let me inside, you've seen something of his.

Jack also produces an Americana music series on PBS called "Jammin at Hippie Jack's." This year it will be recorded at his Americana musice festival on his farm this weekend. The artist my brother plays with closed down the show last night and I simply had to be there. Family duty, you understand...

Brothers and all.

Plus, I got to drink beer from the musician's tent and tour Jack's private gallery, while Jack was giving the Flying Pig trophy to the winner of the barbecue cooking contest. Did I mention the food was good?

In spite of the fact that there was no beer being served (officially...I mean, come's a music festival...a "family" music festival) one gentleman, who I turned out to know from days gone past, managed to maintain a solid staggering drunk from 4:30 until midnight. Last I saw him he was lying face up in the grass after dancing right over the top of one of the funeral home chairs they'd rented for the crowd. His brother had asked him if he was all right?

"How the hell would I know?" he answered.

He was the exception. Mostly it was an old hippie crowd. You know...Folks who have jobs and families and aren't about to come clean to their kids about the early years.

"Don't ask me 'cause I won't tell and anyway, I'll lie if you try to corner me"... old hippies.

There were also a bunch of gray ponytails and one beard that went to the man's knees in a well done braid. I had to wonder how he dealt with it during certain personal moments but I moved on before my mind could arrive there.

The music was varied but good. One group to note was a trio of highschoolers from Greensboro , NC called Beaconwood. Young and quite accomplished, musically. I'm a fan.

At the end of the night, when everybody was tired and ready to crash, the sound checks and video checks, and whatever other kind of checks they do got done and Ab the Flagman and the X Miss Americas finally started.

Jon Schwenke on Bass.

Gabe Pline is stuck in the back on drums...but he got the Drummer Cam to make up for it.

Ab Ivens

Ab is either an Americana Artist who plays music or an Americana Musician who plays art. Both his music and art are of note and folks got to enjoy both kinds of notes because the stage had his art installed all over it. He's big on the American Flag but doesn't wrap himself up in it. Quite the opposite.

Ab wrapped the American Flag in his own self and dedicated "Drunk and Crazy" to all the women in his life. "Either you're Drunk...Or you're crazy...For loving me." Or something like that.

Anyway, the band rocks!

Creek Brother put on his skin tight super hero suit and flew his guitar around in the night.

I took pictures.


  1. Outstanding report and photos. One of those "wish you were here" postcards on the internets that makes you wish you were there.

    Regarding the "lost" part of TN between Monterey and Livingston, we've driven that road many, many times on the way to Byrdstown, the Really Lost part of TN (Pickett Co. is the smallest in the state if I'm not mistaken).

    In fact, I was born in the Livingston hospital, because they didn't have a hospital or clinic or anything like that in Byrdstown, where my family is from.

    (Although I'm pretty sure my Grandma or any number of other country folk could have performed the required duties if called upon. She sewed up a nasty cut on my knee one time with a needle and thread from her sewing kit.)

    My Mom and Dad were over there in that neck of the woods yesterday and today for Decoration Day at the family cemeteries. They probably missed the festivities at Hippie Jack's.

  2. hippiejack11:55 AM

    It was our pleasure to have Abs band here.....look for the show to be aired on PBS in Tennessee..." Jammin At Hippie Jacks" If your affiliate doesn't carry them......