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Galax Fiddle Festival

LilyFestre 04 Dec 04 - 11:41 AM
BanjoRay 04 Dec 04 - 12:37 PM
GUEST,Pete Peterson 04 Dec 04 - 04:28 PM
Fortunato 04 Dec 04 - 09:28 PM
Padre 04 Dec 04 - 09:56 PM
tarheel 04 Dec 04 - 10:18 PM
open mike 05 Dec 04 - 02:43 AM
chris nightbird childs 05 Dec 04 - 02:46 AM
GUEST,weary traveller 06 Dec 04 - 04:46 AM
LilyFestre 06 Dec 04 - 07:03 AM
LilyFestre 06 Dec 04 - 07:05 AM
Fortunato 06 Dec 04 - 09:44 AM
Fortunato 06 Dec 04 - 09:51 AM
GUEST 07 Dec 04 - 01:15 AM
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Subject: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: LilyFestre
Date: 04 Dec 04 - 11:41 AM

Hello!!!

   Has anyone been to the Galax Fiddle Convention in Galax, Virgina? If so, was it worth the trip? I'm thinking about going this year (as a spectator only). Any information would be appreciated!

Thanks!

Michelle


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: BanjoRay
Date: 04 Dec 04 - 12:37 PM

If you love Old Time music and traditional Bluegrass, and don't mind listening to it for the best part of a week, then Galax is the place for you. Most of the regulars camp in RVs, and get there early (I think Sunday morning is the earliest you can get in) to get a place on the campsite. I usually take a small tent and camp on the high ground just inside the entrance - it always really rains sometime during the week, and the field floods. If you enter the competition and turn up to perform (most people do) you get part of your fee returned. Consequently you get to see some really bad acts on stage, as well as some great ones. Nobody's bothered by it - the atmosphere is superb, very friendly. When I went last, I got to jam with Benton Flippen and Richard Bowman.
Cheers
Ray


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: GUEST,Pete Peterson
Date: 04 Dec 04 - 04:28 PM

Ray has given a very good summary. In recent years the festival has become more oriented toward Bluegrass since the big old time festival is the week before, at Clifftop, and few of us can take two weeks off and do both! (Last time I was at Galax was 2001)
1) In general, if you have a camping pass, your neighbors will be the vehicles immediately before and after you in line.
2) Despite what I said above, there are enough good old time musicians there to make going VERY worthwhile, and they're all very friendly and approachable.
3) As Ray has said, bring rain gear as well as hot weather gear. Felts Park is at the bottom of a saucer, ad the August heat can bake you, even at 2200 feet above sea level. Then it gets cold at night, with a heavy dew. . . just the thing instruments need to stay in tune (joke here)which may be part of the reason for some of the things I have heard from the stage


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: Fortunato
Date: 04 Dec 04 - 09:28 PM

I want to add that Susette and I went for the first time last year, and joined our friend Tom Mindte and his gang. Michele, what we found were many older musicians who are still alive and still play old time music. I do not agree with the above that it's oriented towards Bluegrass. Perhaps in 2001 it was, or perhaps where you are in the park makes the difference. The bluegrass pickers that we came across were those that revere the older styles.

It's also important to add that we found Galax to be MUCH more welcoming and the pickers to be more inclusive than Mount Airy (another 'old time' festival). We have not been to Clifftop. You should also consider Fiddler's Glen and Union Grove, NC.

The music is alive and living at Galax, it is not a, museum artifact.

I suggest you ought to go even so. And if you do PM me. We'll be there. Yes it rains, but it's all right.

chance


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: Padre
Date: 04 Dec 04 - 09:56 PM

I first went in 1968 after returning from military service - a great festival then. Went again in 1975 and 1979. I can recommend it to any one who enjoys old-time music.

Padre


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: tarheel
Date: 04 Dec 04 - 10:18 PM

it's the biggest,the best,the greatest fiddler's convention that you will ever get the chance to enjoy...
it's always the 2nd week in august,each year and now it's added more days to the festival that now last 6 days,each year!
of course,being held in august each year,gives no guarantee on weather conditions in the mountains there! it gets hot,humid,rainy,cold,mild,terrific all in one week sometimes!
but,don't let that keep you from going and by all means,...take your guitar,whatever instrument you play,because outdoor jams run 24 hours a day and you cant go there without wanting to join in on one of the many going on every few yards....
i have plasced in the dulcimer competition 6 times in the last 12 years,so i know its a terrific place to go!!!
have fun and enjoy yourself!!!!!


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: open mike
Date: 05 Dec 04 - 02:43 AM

why even consider going as a spectator only??
what a wonderful oppourtunity to participate!!
go for it!!
whilie you are at it...attend some other events:
http://www.oldtimemusic.com/oteventsR.html


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: chris nightbird childs
Date: 05 Dec 04 - 02:46 AM

Give me a couple months OM...


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: GUEST,weary traveller
Date: 06 Dec 04 - 04:46 AM

can you get there without private transport?
is there anywhere safe to leave instruments?


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: LilyFestre
Date: 06 Dec 04 - 07:03 AM

Find answers to those kinds of questions here:

http://www.oldfiddlersconvention.com/schedule.htm



Michelle


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: LilyFestre
Date: 06 Dec 04 - 07:05 AM

Oops..that's the link to the schedule, here's the link to the home page! Have fun poking around!

http://www.oldfiddlersconvention.com/default.htm

Michelle :)


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: Fortunato
Date: 06 Dec 04 - 09:44 AM

We understand that during the week, I think we will go on the Saturday before or Sunday, you can leave your instruments safely sitting out in your campsite or in your tent. When the festival weekend comes and the 'day visitors' flood in, then one ought to have a vehicle to lock them in.


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: Fortunato
Date: 06 Dec 04 - 09:51 AM

The Trailways/Greyhound bus line don't seem to go to Galax, and that's all I know about. Perhaps someone from Southern VA know another busline that might run from Dulles Airport or the DC area.


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Subject: RE: Galax Fiddle Festival
From: GUEST
Date: 07 Dec 04 - 01:15 AM

Galax is a great festival. If you are pretty good and you have a week then it is definately the place to go.

A couple of things to mention:

The guys at Galax are really into old-time. They don't do singer-songwriter and they don't do funky blues.

This is a big festival---like a state fair. There are lots of funnelcakes and trinkets. Pizza Hut operates a restaurant on the grounds.

You need to plan for a week of camping to enjoy yourself. Lots of folks bring RV's. A tent and a canopy will work.

If you are first-timer, I would recommend Mt. Airy Fiddler's Convention, or the Grayson County Fiddler's Convention in Elk Creek, or the Fries Fiddler's Convention instead. They are all smaller and shorter and less insane. My family goes to all of them to compete, but we definately get more fun out of the smaller ones.


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