Your Metaphor Here: or will it all disappear...
A few weeks ago, an article appeared on some social media site that chose the best state to hike in the U.S. The winner? Connecticut. Now, I'm a proud Nutmegger, and there are a lot of trails, but really? In reading the article, it was clear their methodology was based on some pretty sound concepts. For example, number of trails per square mile, number of trails per resident, miles of trails per town, etc. Immediately, everyone started posting pictures from lofty mountains around the country showing all the cool places they have been that weren't Connecticut. Well, duh, I can do that... Above is Engineer Mountain, north of Durango, Colorado. Below is a view from a cliff in Killingworth, Ct:
The White Mountains of New Hampshire:
Traprock slab, Hamden Ct (Sleeping Giant State Park):
Get the picture? Connecticut has very few views. Big deal; what everyone who scoffed at the article failed to understand was that the point of the article wasn't rewarding the best views, it was the best state to hike in. And it's true. This morning we did a quick 6 miles through beautiful mountain laurels and cool rocks and were home in time to get to work. Connecticut has trails leading into the woods every half mile, it seems like. If you want to get hiking, within a short bike ride or drive from your front door, Connecticut is superb. I'll add a bunch of photos (hopefully inspirational) at the end to get those hiking juices going, but let's get to the point.
Originally, I was going to let the reader pick a metaphor of going big or enjoying things closer to home. Then a few minutes ago a NYC musician friend texted me about Rockwood Music Hall being in jeopardy of closing. Rockwood is small, it can only hold a handful of people, and no one ever thought (in their right mind, anyway) that getting gigs there was going to produce a big payday. But it was essential to so many smaller musicians just starting out, letting them get in front of people, play their hearts out, and hopefully sharpen the chisels in their musical tool chest. Your big-assed amphitheater may not be essential, but the small clubs sure are.
They survived the pandemic, but they can't survive inflationary rents and food/beverage costs, nor personnel shortages, and worst of all... people not giving a crap. The last thing I want to do is get all doom and gloom, as I know there's a way out, but it's not going to look the same, and different players will need to get involved. Maybe even musicians will need to get together and form musical coops. But the truth is, audiences are shrinking for the small local places, as many now opt for the big experience-type shows. Ya gotta go to the casino to see the big pseudo-country star that's Nashville's biggest HIT! Or the big amphitheater where you can see the same bands playing every other amphitheater all summer long. The same guys that came through two years ago! And will come though again! Wow!
But try out the local clubs where the young players are trying hard to make a name for themselves in something other than covers from the 80"s? Apparently not. Rockwood is launching a fundraiser to save themselves from extinction. I'm not blessing this fundraiser for everyone to jump on, as who is to say that they won't fall back into despair within a year. You have got to get local, folks, or it's all gone. The local organic farm movement is making a huge difference in the way we eat and the way restaurants get their food, now let's see if it can help local music.
A few videos from Rockwood to give you an idea of what will be missing, then the aforementioned scenery pictures to get you drooling and hopefully outdoors.
You get the idea. There's a lot of great music happening in small places right down the street. Go there. before it's too late. Now, pictures to get you anxious to get outside: GO!
That's from the Branford Quarries in Branford, Ct.
This is from Silverton, Colorado:
Rocks on the Chatfield Trail, Killingworth, Ct;, then LaPlata canyon, Durango area.
And finally, haunted Pilfershire Village in Simsbury, Ct, and Perrin's Peak from Hogsback, Durango, Co.