Aiken Bluegrass

by | May 14, 2005

Peter Rowan + Tony Rice, Snake Oil Medicine Show, Acoustic Syndicate and Larry Keel and Natural Bridge

For the second consecutive year, the small city of Aiken, SC (pop. 25,000) opened up their city center to the bluegrass freaks for a day. Our hotel was around the corner. Peter Rowan, among other notable pickers, was staying there. We nodded “good morning” to him while he walked the halls, pajama clad and toting his guitar. As far as performances went, I believe Snake Oil–with a native son on the mic–captivated the beer-soaked crowd most. I noted during “Free Mexican Airforce” that no one was relating too closely to the song. At Red Rocks a quarter pound would go up in the air during this song. Aiken ain’t Red Rocks. But there were freaks frolicking with the good town folk and that counts for something.