It was Friday morning, June 27th, 2014, and I was getting ready to hit the road for a wonderful weekend at that year’s Indiana Fiddlers Gathering in Battle Ground, Indiana. I was looking forward to a weekend of great music, late night jamming, and active participation – I would be leading their Children’s Concert and teaching a workshop.
As I was packing the last few remaining items into my car, the phone rang. It was my friend Debb calling to say hi. As we chatted, I mentioned to her that in a few minutes, I would be Indiana-bound.
“Where do you find the motivation,” she asked me.
Hmmm. I never really thought that going to a folk festival was something I had to be motivated to do. But I suppose there has to be something that compels me to hit the road and drive for 3-4 hours to spend the weekend on a former battlefield in a small town in central northern Indiana. I was in a hurry to be on my way, so I didn’t really have time to give her a very good answer. But I’ve had a couple of months to ponder that question, so Debb, if you’re reading this, I’ll tell you exactly where I find the motivation.
I’m motivated by hearing the music I love in a beautiful outdoor setting. There’s just something special about listening to string band, bluegrass, Celtic, and other forms of traditional folk music in an open grassy area surrounded by trees.
I’m motivated by the welcoming smiles, greetings and hugs from people who are glad to see me. When I’m at Fiddlers Gathering, I’m truly “back home again in Indiana.”
I’m motivated by the smiles and laughter of the families for which I perform.
I’m motivated by jamming into the wee hours of the morning with people who like the same kind of music I do. Here in the Chicago suburbs, there aren’t too many people who enjoy, much less listen to the music I love. But they are present in abundance at the Indiana Fiddlers Gathering.
I’m motivated by high-tailing it out of town for a few days and getting away from the daily grind.
I’m motivated by the joy of sharing my musical skill and knowledge with the people who come to my workshops.
It’s for all of these reasons that I’ve been motivated to attend the Indiana Fiddlers Gathering for the last twelve years and why I’ll continue to attend as long as I’m able.