GATEKEEPERS OF FREEDOM:

TWENTY–ONE REVIEWED CONCERTS, CDS AND BOOKS

VOICES THAT MADE A DIFFERENCE AND STOOD UP FOR A BETTER AMERICA IN 2017

By Ross Altman, PhD

At year end I celebrate the roots-based artists and musicians who have made a difference and stood up for a better America in 2017. They give concerts, they make CDs and they write books—all of which have been reviewed in these pages. We don’t hear their names very often—none of them have been on the front page of the LA Times, the New York Times, or the Washington Post. They travel around the country, guitar, banjo and fiddle in hand and they sing and make music—the people’s music—carrying on a tradition that goes back to the ancient minstrels and lyre-playing Orpheus—a part of what the late great Leonard Cohen called The Tower of Song.

Here they are—let us keep their precious names in mind to remind us of the better angels of our nature and what America has yet to become—the land of the free and home of the brave—except for the firefighters—who are—as Tom Paxton wrote—“The Bravest.” Support FolkWorks Folk/Roots Festival next March 24.

 ~ Happy New Year in 2018; Ross Altman, PhD.

1) THE BLIND BOYS OF ALABAMA

CHRISTMAS SHOW AT THE THEATRE AT ACE HOTEL SUNDAY, DECEMBER 17, 2017

PRESENTED BY CAP-UCLA

FEATURING PRESERVATION HALL LEGACY HORNS AND RUTHIE FOSTER!

OLD TIME RELIGION

2) KINKY FRIEDMAN

MCCABE’S GUITAR SHOP - NOVEMBER 18, 2017

ANOTHER SIDE OF KINKY FRIEDMAN

3) RHIANNON GIDDENS

MACARTHUR GENIUS GRANT RECIPIENT COMES TO DISNEY

WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL - OCTOBER 25, 2017

4) BARBARA DANE - A PROFILE IN COURAGE

CAP-UCLA AT ROYCE HALL OCTOBER 21, 2017

CELEBRATING A LIFETIME OF JAZZ, BLUES AND SONGS FOR PEACE AND JUSTICE

5) JOHN HAMMOND

AT MCCABE’S - SEPTEMBER 29, 2017~THE LATE SHOW

THE MAN WITH THE BLUE GUITAR

6) LAMPEDUSA CONCERT FOR REFUGEES:

JOAN BAEZ, STEVE EARLE, DAVE MATHEWS, LUCINDA WILLIAMS

PATTY GRIFFIN, BRANDI CARLILE, AND THE MASTERSONS

AT THE WILTERN THEATRE - OCTOBER 10, 2017; 8:00PM

VOYAGE OF THE DAMNED

7) WILLIE NELSON IN CONCERT

SHRINE AUDITORIUM LOS ANGELES - THURSDAY, AUGUST 17, 2017~9:30PM

THE VOICE OF AMERICA

8) ROY BOOK BINDER RETURNS

MCCABE’S GUITAR SHOP - JUNE 11, 2017 8:00 PM

ROAD SCHOLAR

9) ROY ZIMMERMAN: REZIST

ZIMMERMAN’S TRAVELS

LIVE AT MCCABE’S - JULY 23, 2017~ 8:00PM

CENTER FOR INQUIRY ~STEVE ALLEN THEATRE - JULY 23, 2017~ 11:00AM

10) IN SEARCH OF THE FIRST BLUES SONG:

PARIS REVIEW AT BEYOND BAROQUE - FRIDAY, JUNE 30, 2017

11) JONATHAN EDWARDS

IN CONCERT AT MCCABE’S - FRIDAY, JUNE 9, 2017

THE HONKY-TONK STARDUST COWBOY RIDES INTO MCCABE’S

12) THE LAST THING ON TOM PAXTON'S MIND

MCCABE’S - SATURDAY, APRIL 1, 2017

13) YEMEN BLUES WITH CHLOE POURMORADY ENSEMBLE

PICO UNION PROJECT LOS ANGELES - MARCH 25, 2017 - 7:30PM

LOUD, PROUD, AND STILL DRAWS A CROWD

14) ROY ZIMMERMAN: REZIST!

AT THE STEVE ALLEN THEATRE - SUNDAY, JANUARY 22, 2017

THIS COULD BE THE START OF SOMETHING BIG

15) JERRON “BLIND BOY” PAXTON IN CONCERT

WITH FRANK FAIRFIELD AND MEREDITH AXELROD

AT CODY’S VIVA CANTINA IN BURBANK - JANUARY 14, 2017

16) TITLE: WHERE THE HEART IS

ARTIST: KATY MOFFATT

LABEL: CENTERFIRE MUSIC

RELEASE DATE: APRIL 18, 2017

UNSAFE AT ANY SPEED

17) CD TITLE: FOLK HOTEL

ARTIST: TOM RUSSELL

LABEL: FRONTERA RECORDS

RELEASE DATE: SEPTEMBER 8, 2017

18) BOOK TITLE: FOLK HOTEL: REFLECTIONS, PAINTINGS, LYRICS

AUTHOR: TOM RUSSELL

PUBLISHER: FRONTERA PRESS (KANSAS CITY, MO)

PUBLICATION DATE: SEPTEMBER 8, 2017

RENAISSANCE COWBOY

19) TITLE: PHIL OCHS LIVE IN MONTREAL 10/22/66

ARTIST: PHIL OCHS

LABEL: ROCKBEAT RECORDS

RELEASE DATE: MAY 5, 2017

THE UNQUIET AMERICAN

20) TITLE: ACROSS THE AMERIKEE: SHOWPIECES FROM COAL CAMP TO CATTLE TRAIL

ARTIST: STEPHEN WADE

LABEL: SMITHSONIAN FOLKWAYS

RELEASE DATE: JUNE 30, 2017

PURE PERFECTION

21) TITLE: PEGGY SEEGER: A LIFE OF MUSIC, LOVE AND POLITICS

AUTHOR: JEAN R. FREEDMAN

PUBLISHER: UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS PRESS

PUBLICATION DATE: MARCH 2017

PRETTY PEGGY-O

Folk singer and FolkWorks staff writer Ross Altman joins singer-songwriter and KCSN Dylan Hour radio producer Lisa Finnie & Friends in concert at the Noble House Concert Series during the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday weekend—Sunday evening January 14, 2018 at 7:30pm—$15 donation requested.

RSVP to: barb@noblehouseconcerts.com or call 818-780-5979 (Directions given upon RSVP). Contributions to the appetizer/dessert buffet appreciated.

Ross Altman has a PhD in Modern Literature from SUNY Binghamton; he belongs to Local 47 (AFM); Ross may be reached at greygoosemusic@aol.com