A story with a head wound is always a good story. This story has a head wound. But it's not the best part of the story. This story is about music. Music at Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival. You'll notice I omitted the. It's not The Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival. It’s Grey Fox. We’ll get to that just like we’ll get to the head wound. But first, music. After all, that’s why we travel to the Catskills every year. But why this music? What about this music sets it apart? Truth be told, bluegrass can feel so rigid.
It’s 10:27 pm at The 8th Annual Festy Experience and I am sitting under the stage, directly beneath Mike Cooley’s feet (of Drive-By Truckers), hacking away at my typewriter. The rain is falling, not strong but steady, and I need somewhere dry to write. The music is flowing through me, his boot bottoms stomping out a beat inches from my head.
Sometimes I think I am so full of shit. Ask my wife, and it’s probably safe to drop sometimes I think. But coming to Grey Fox Bluegrass Music Festival, a festival I come to every year, trying to think of a new way to make you, fair reader, understand that it is unlike anything that you have or ever will experience? I am full of shit to think I can do this. But thankfully, this year mother nature is co-writing this review, and she’s writing in the blurry ink of rain.
I have a moleskine book I keep in my pocket at concerts. My wife gave it to me as a gift years ago. She always gives the best gifts. This tattered little vestige to my musical history is used solely for notes at concerts I am reviewing. Nothing could better embody who I am, not just as a writer, but as a person. Every time I write in the book, it is a process. I have to take the now stretched out elastic rope off of the book, turn to the page marked with the connected bookmark and pick up where I left off.
To return to a point in your life that you have already lived is metaphysical. Déjà vu, as most of us call it, feels mystical, even if it has a chemical explanation. Scientific evidence aside, to relive something that you have lived before is an experience that seems to connect us with something beyond ourselves. We can both be in the moment and be able to predict (or at least have the feeling that we are predicting) what is coming around the next corner. But to experience déjà vu and to be able to improve upon the actions that once were? Now that is something different altogether.