read the t-shirt of a busty bartender at the Maldon Folk Festival. She looked like she meant every word of it in its non-funny sense.
i didnt feel all that different either.
but then, i wasnt really there for the music, i was there for a change of scene and because I’d forgotten how bad a time I had at the Woodford Folk Festival (with the notable exception of the Dirty Three’s set – god knows how they got on to the program).
There were some good bits though at Maldon. Lolling around on the picnic rugs and drinking beer in the hot afternoon sun when the main stage opened on Sunday was good. It reminded me pretty much of the Sunday arvos at trance parties except with less dancing, less noise and older people. And the crowd was ok – maybe a couple of thousand people all with alcohol being the obvious drug of choice. So that was good. Camping was good because a friend of a friend got us a great spot surrounded by trees with a view down a valley. And the town of Maldon itself is quite lovely if a little over populated by antique shops. Plus alcohol was cheap!
Compared to those joys, my quibbles are actually quite minor.
First however must surely be the constant bloody fiddling. It seemed every second band was an irish/celtic type fiddler ensemble with the same tune that never ends. I have not a single good word to say about this sort of music.
Next was the terrible sound system. Not only were the speakers pretty crap but the mix was terrible – these people have not heard of sub-woofers or a bassline so basically, if you’re anywhere but two rows from the front, all you hear are the top notes. Bass guitarists, double bassists, drummers and people with deep voices might as well be puppets on the stage.
Finally, the ultimate question – would I go back?
Unfortunately, that’s an adamant no. There’s only so much fiddling I can take.