Text and photos by Lilly Pavlak
The Infamous Stringdusters at Strakonice
Saturday [at the Jamboree, Strakonice] started at 10.30 a.m. with Bluegrass Session #8 in the Castle yard. Czech bands Wejlet, Goodwill, Lunackove, Sunny Side, Minaret, Album, Wyrton, Petr Brandejs Band, then one of the Slovak bluegrass pioneer bands, Krok, CZ/USA Giant Mountain Boys, Rawhide from Belgium, and finally the Infamous Stringdusters gave the audience a sample of what they could expect in the evening... It was very hot and everybody was seeking for some shadow. The afternoon program started at 4 p.m. with the best of what the Czech scene can offer.
The young band Kreni, Monogram, Eliska & Friends, Blue Gate, Blue Ground, Peter Kus & Famy, Druha Miza Vojty Zichy, Meantime (SK), Vabank Unit, and finally Rawhide from Belgium with their great show. Of course the highlight was the Infamous Stringdusters. They were touring Europe for five weeks, visiting five different countries, but that concert in Strakonice was for sure the best of the whole tour. Most people were just speechless; many of them - mostly musicians and even the MC from the stage - said the Stringdusters were the best band they’ve ever seen live in their life. Pure success pure! And the boys played and sang like gods!
It was I think the first time on this festival without rain, there were showers and thunderstorms everywhere, but the bad weather did not dare to disturb the beautiful music.
Sunday morning (1 June), my German friend Big Herbert, who was the driver for the whole tour, offered me a ride with them to Bratislava in Slovakia for their last concert. That night the band Meantime opened for them. The Infamous Stringdusters were so good, beyond all description, and everybody loved them. At the end they held a jam session with their Slovak friends Meantime.
The Stringdusters and Meantime jamming on stage in Bratislava
What a great conclusion of a fantastic tour. And what a great end to the most beautiful European Bluegrass Month of May.
Bülach, Switzerland, 15 June 2008
Lilly and the Stringdusters