Mudcat Café message #1188147 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #69853   Message #1188147
Posted By: Mark Clark
18-May-04 - 09:20 PM
Thread Name: Ozark Folk Center - Thumbpicking
Subject: Ozark Folk Center - Thumbpicking
Jan and I made our first pilgrimage to the Ozark Folk Center in Mountain View, Arkansas this past weekend and thoroughly enjoyed everything about the trip. It was the occasion of their Tribute to Merle Travis: National Thumbpicking Guitar Contest including concert performances by Thom Bresh, Tommy Flint, Comer “Moon” Mullins, Steve Rector and Jerry Greer.

One of the best aspects of the trip was getting to meet two Mudcatters. Dale is working to help catalog recordings of all the great performances that have been recorded at the Ozark Folk Center over the years and Arkie is Assistant Director of the Center. It was a real treat meeting these guys and getting an inside look at the Center and its work.

I kept hoping Justa Picker would show up and enter the contest but, alas, my hopes were dashed. He certainly would have been in the money. Maybe he'll get down next year. The weekend included concerts and the contest as well as formal jam sessions and workshops. It was a terrific opportunity to ask questions, pick up ideas and get the thumbpicking batteries recharged. I'd recommend this event to anyone even remotely interested in country fingerstyle guitar.

I'd also recommend the Ozark Folk Center to anyone interested in traditional string music of the southeastern U.S. You won't be disappointed if you make the trip. The Center's lodge is really a neighborhood of hexagon-shaped duplexes nestled in the woods. They've just been refurbished and make a very nice place to stay. Mountain View also has some bread and breakfast places though we didn't go through any of them.

Central Mountain View becomes the site for impromptu jam sessions of all sorts so you should definately bring an instrument if you play.

      - Mark