The Woods Hole Traditional Music Stroll, now in its sixth year, takes place Saturday, April 27 from noon to 10 PM. Sixteen musical groups will fill the village with lively Native American, Celtic, old-time, folk, roots, and early music at various locations: the Woods Hole Historic Museum, Woods Hole Public Library, Woods Hole Community Center, Martha’s Vineyard Savings Bank, Quicks Tavern, Water Street Kitchen, and Coffee Obsession. All events are free.
New this year is an Artisans Market from noon to 6 PM in the Old Fire Station, 72 Water Street, where local vendors will display and sell their wares. Participating vendors include jewelry makers, photographers, visual artists, fiber artists, and a cake and cupcake baker.
Artists will paint images of the musicians as they play. Ruth Leech, Mary T. Caroll, and Barbara Lunn, from the Falmouth Art Center will set up their easels at Community Hall and other locations to capture the essence of the day.
The Stroll, presented by ArtsFalmouth, takes place rain or shine and is an official event of ArtWeek Massachusetts. This year, the Stroll celebrates the contributions of both Native Americans and immigrants from many different countries who brought their music with them. The result is a vibrant, cross-cultural mix of influences and genres sure to delight the listener–or dancer.
Unless otherwise noted, performances are about an hour in length.
The Trad Stroll begins at noon at the Woods Hole Historical Museum, 579 Woods Hole Road, with a performance by The Familiars of Cape Cod. Manny and Linda Dias sing and play folk, country, rock, fiddle, and popular music on guitar, violin, mandolin, harmonica, and Irish low whistle.
At 1 PM, The Resemblance plays at the Woods Hole Library, 581 Woods Hole Road. Anna Magee and Oliver Farrell, a mother-and-son duo, play lively old-time, Celtic, and contradance tunes on fiddle, guitar, mandolin, and keyboard.
Also at 1 PM, John Yankee performs at the Water Street Kitchen, 56 Water Street. Yankee sings folk songs and plays hammered dulcimer.
At 1:30 PM, Black Whydah will be at the Martha’s Vineyard Savings Bank, 2 Water Street. Jean Sagara, Cathy Hatch, and John Best offer three-part harmonies drawn from a mix of Irish, old-time, bluegrass, folk, and original compositions. Band members play fiddles, guitars, cittern, mandolin, banjo, ukuleles, and more.
Also at 1:30, the Falmouth Fiddlers start things off at Woods Hole Community Hall, 68 Water Street. The group plays and sings old-time, bluegrass, and Celtic fiddle tunes on fiddle, mandolin, guitar, banjo, dobro, tin whistle, bodhran, cello, and string bass. They are joined by members of the Monday Night Session and Ladies’ Choice.
Buzzards Bayou performs at 2 PM at Quicks Hole Tavern, 29 Railroad Avenue. Buzzards Bayou performs traditional Cajun music from French S.W. Louisiana. Jonathan Larkin plays Cajun accordion, Amy Larkin plays fiddle, and Aaron Mayo plays guitar.
The Harper and the Minstrel take the stage at Community Hall at 2:30 PM. Abby and Jay Michaels are passionate performers of music from the past, sung and played on a variety of traditional plucked, bowed, hammered, and woodwind instruments. They sing and play love songs, jigs, reels, and dances, medieval, Renaissance, and Celtic music.
Cat’s Melodeon will entertain from the Coffee Obsession front porch from 3 to 5 PM. Led by Bill Black, Cat’s Melodeon specializes in Irish traditional music, played on fiddle, flute, recorder, accordion, banjo, guitar, uilleann pipes, and bodhrán.
Kim Moberg performs at 3:30 PM at Community Hall. Born in Juneau, Alaska, Moberg is a member of the native Tlingit tribe, whose moiety is the raven, a bird who protected humanity from a greedy chief who tried to steal all the light. Kim’s song “Resist” pays homage to immigrants who came to America for a better life, Native Americans who lost their lands and lives, people who have suffered for the “crime of loving differently,” calling for all to come together and resist the wrongs in our society.
At 4:30, the Sonnay Fiddlers, led by Nikki Engstrom, take the stage at Community Hall. The fiddlers, age 5 and up, perform a large repertoire of Celtic tunes.
At 5:30, two young people’s dance groups follow: Nobska Lights and the Kanaley School of Irish Dance. Nobska Lights, led by Valerie Walbek, is a Morris and sword dancing team that performs traditional dances from England. The Kanaley School dancers will perform solo steps and sets as well as group ceili dancing. The school has locations in Pocasset and Hyannis and is directed by Colleen Kanaley.
Stanley and Grimm perform at 6:30 PM at Community Hall. Fiddler Nikki Engstrom and singer/guitarist Sean Brennan offer old and new interpretations of traditional jigs, reels, and songs, as well as original tunes, on fiddle, guitar, and voice.
At 7:30 PM, the Solstice Singers, directed by Lore Loftfield DeBower, perform at Community Hall, presenting a panoply of songs illustrating the influence of a variety of countries and musical traditions, ranging from European madrigals of the 16th century to folk songs of Mexico, Canada and America, including Cape Cod. The program, especially developed for ArtWeek Massachusetts, will include historical notes, audience participation and guest appearances by the Solstice Singers’ children’s chorus “Les Enfants du Soleil.” Also featured will be a skit based on a re-imagined fable with special relevance to the scientific community in Woods Hole, and a musical mummers play.
Tom Goux brings two groups, Triple-Slide and the Rum-Soaked Crooks, to Community Hall from 8:30 to 10 PM. Triple-Slide features Goux on slide guitar with Rusty Strange on dobro and eight-string lap guitar, playing their interpretations of Hoagy Carmichael, Johnny Mercer, the Gershwins, Fats Waller, Cole Porter, and others.
The Rum-Soaked Crooks are Goux, Jacek Sulanowski, and Dan Lanier. Their repertoire spans three centuries of seafaring songs and poetry, featuring an exceptional sampling of Cape and Islands sea songs and poetry.
Funding for the Woods Hole Trad Stroll has been provided by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the Woods Hole Foundation, Rand Atlantic Cape Cod Realty, Martha’s Vineyard Savings Bank, the Enterprise Publishing Company, and the Falmouth Road Race.
Parking is available at WHO lots on School Street and Dyer’s Dock on Water Street, and at the MBL overflow lot behind Lillie Auditorium.