Keepin’ Tabs
May, 2015
Jack Ferguson, Ed

Next Gathering: In Lawnridge Hall on May 2nd.

Uke Can Too: Evie Boss will see you at 4:00 and is itching to hear all the progress the uke players have made. The Boss is Back!

Banjo Circle: Jack Ferguson won’t be at the May gathering but he can’t wait to hear what the other banjo pickers put together. Everyone who meets at 6:00 with a banjo and a clawhammer stroke will receive a prize.

Flute Circle: The best flute deal in town. Meet at 5:30 with Don Hays.  Come sooner if you want; they always set up early.

Harmonica Circle: 5:00 Andy Mather says “if you can breath you can enjoy the harmonica”. Bring one in C and join the fun (or one will be provided to you).

Presentation: (7:30) Ted Badgerow will present American music of the mid 1800′s which includes folk melodies of the railways and rivers of early America, popular ballads of the time, songs of soldiers and civilians of the War Between the States/The Civil War, music of Victorian opera and concert halls, songs of Steven Foster, and Negro spirituals.

Snack Host: Dave Belferman

Hat Band: Phil Doolittle, Roger Beukema and perhaps a mystery guest will explore the pitfalls of harboring a haughty spirit.

Song Swap Theme: Pride

Take Pride in your Uke: Evie Boss reminds us that the fifth annual Mighty Uke Day runs from May 8-10 in East Lansing. There are workshops for all levels of playing ability as well as concerts on all three days. Saturday always begins with a group strum at Sir Pizza’s. Elderly Instruments will have special deals on ukes and there is a silent auction with unique ukuleles and accessories. Many ukulele groups from Michigan, neighboring states, and Canada come together to celebrate everything ukulele. Details can be found at

Presidents Message: Paint Creek Folklore Society teeters on the brink – the abyss of anarchy.  Okay, that may be hyperbole, but I will point out that elections are coming in June.  If you haven’t been on the board yet, this is a great time to do so!

Board Meetings are a Big Time: The Paint Creek Board is going to schedule a meeting but we’ve been having so much fun enjoying the gatherings that, well… we will just have to knuckle down and schedule it. When we do, we’d love to have your input!

Where the Creek Flows: Dedicated to PCFS members’ events.

Dave Falk hosts unplugged acoustic music at The Goldfish Tea room at 117 4th St. in downtown Royal Oak between Main and Washington every Tuesday night from 7:00 to 9:00.

Evie Boss invites all on the First Tuesday of each month to Gilda’s Club in Royal Oak (on Rochester Road just north of 13 Mile Rd.) where they have a coffee house: dinner starts at 5:30, open mike from 6-7 and featured performer from 7-8.

Maggie Ferguson hosts Live! From the Living Room Acoustic Showcase on Friday nights. For more information go to

As long as we’re on the front porch, tune into WXOU FM.  To listen via live webstream go to:  Tuesdays between 5:00 and 7:30 pm for the best in contemporary folk music.

To submit all your upcoming gigs and events, email the details to Jack, KT Editor, at To have your event in the KT we need the info by the 15th.

Ridin’ Drag: Cooking shows are all the rage these days. Everyone has aspirations to become the next “Chopped Champion” or “Iron Chef”. Yessiree, we’ve all turned into “foodies” with varying opinions on how to season delights like crepes, sauté mushrooms or blanch spinach. But when the pot boils there is one point the people in the kitchen all agree upon.

Write it down in your recipe book, when the foodies have worn themselves out creating their bizarre exotic tofu blends- the ones they promise you can make in thirty minutes, from whatever was laying around in the pantry- and the cameras are turned off, they order pizza. Because after a stress-filled session at the stove nothing calms the spirit like a swig of sauvignon and…comfort food.

Paint Creek Folklore Society has some fine cooks as members. Most are scratching their heads and wondering what the Food Network has to do with folk music? Well shortnin’ bread, just this: I’ve learned that every “Iron Picker” spends most of his or her time with Comfort Chords. Yup, it’s true; follow ‘em home and listen.

After a gigful of bizarre, exotic, lick loaded tunes what do they turn to? Comfort Chords. That’s how they found their way to those hot licks in the first place. By constantly feeding on comfort chords their fingers stretched out. This puts in motion a natural process that challenges the player to search and grow.

What are comfort chords? They are chords that you have grown comfortable with. Some will call them cowboy chords, but they could be a progression that sets the boundaries for a jazz melody. They are the tones that build those chords; that you enjoy hearing and playing. They comfort you.

Let them. Often. Sneak off with your favorite instrument and ingest some comfort chords now. Have a cupful five or six times a day until you can manage bowls. Maybe a slice or two of grainy G,C,D changes every couple of hours will help your favorite Bob Dylan cover flow more fluidly. Soon enough you’ll be buttering the whole loaf, drizzling hammer-ons, pull-offs and slides where they taste best. Did I mention that comfort chords are low in fat, high in fiber, affordable and… I’m feeling a might peckish. Pass the mandolin. I believe The Barefoot Contessa is on.
Jack D. Ferguson, Editon

Fine Print:  The Keepin’ Tabs (KT) is the monthly newsletter for, by, and about the Paint Creek Folklore Society.  Paint Creek Folklore Society is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, a center for The Country Dance and Song Society of America (CDSS), a member of the North American Folk  Alliance, and a supporter of folklore, folksong and folkdance societies, groups and individuals whose interest is in the preservation of and education in traditional music and dance.  To submit corrections, articles, gigs, or other information for publication, please contact Jack Ferguson, Editor, at; deadline for the next issue is the 15th.

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