Some NEARfest final thoughts

You could write a book on the 8th Annual NEARfest, but I’ll just give you a few words. Chad Hutchinson and company run a first class operation in a perfect venue catering to fans who are there for one thing, the music. Rarely will an artist find a more rapt and attentive audience, ready for just about any kind of sound as long as the musicianship is high and the artist is committed. You can’t get a much wider spectrum than Richard Leo Johnson’s rustic Ambient Americana and Keith Emerson’s nostalgic symphonic rock. But this audience was there for both of them and everything in between. Ozric Tentacles’ Ed Wynne was actually taken aback I think, by an audience that wasn’t dancing, bobbing and tripping to elements other than the music. And he liked that. And apparently, despite my misgivings, it’s reported that Keith Emerson brought down the house with a full rendition of Tarkus Tarkus.
For more things Prog, check out Chad Hutchinson’s website Ghostland.
I sat next to Mike Montfort, who gave me some shoulder room by getting up to take some great shots of the festival. You can see his NEARfest pictures here.

Comment posted by
at 7/1/2006 10:10:05 AM


Good rubbing shoulders with you too LOL.. Thanks so much for the shout out in your blog. GREAT blog as well! I did a mini review of the three day festival with select pictures at my blog. Don’t take my comments about Sat night to personally, I do feel we did find that “compromise” Sunday. You would think that they would make the seats wider LOL.

Mike Montfort

Comment posted by
at 6/28/2006 9:47:07 AM

Thanks, John, for a great report.

After getting your permission, I’ve translated your review to Hebrew (the language that Israelis use), and it’s online:

Good luck with your blog and the radio show!

Comment posted by
at 6/28/2006 7:09:15 AM

Just to clarify what Emerson really played (seems you lost out on more than half of the show?!), somewhat in order:

– Welcome Back
– Piano Concerto (Emerson rocking up his own classical stuff;-)
– Country Pie (mixing Bach and Bob)
– White Noise (by Bonilla)
– Lucky Man
– Living Sin (never played live by ELP)
– Bitches Crystal
– Hoedown (John left here)
– New Orleans (new piece – grand piano)
– From the Beginning (”Moog solo” on grand piano)
– Karelia Suite
– Touch and Go
– America/Rondo
– Tarkus (more than 30 minutes…)
– Fanfare (a lot of new quotes)
– Nutrocker

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