Thursday, 30 June 2011

Valerie Smith & Liberty Pike - 2011 European/UK/Canadian/US Tour - Post 8

Becky Buller

Photos by David Tousley


We rolled into ROMP 2011 at Yellow Creek Park just outside of Owensboro, Ky., Saturday afternoon and the rain followed us in, thankfully bringing much cooler temperatures than the
previous years we've played there. (Oh, if only we got a picture of me in my fabulous Louise Mandrell raincoat!) It delayed the shows for about an hour, but didn't deter folks from coming out. They estimate that 15,000 people attended the show over the course of the weekend. Wish I could've seen Steve Martin & the Steep Canyon Rangers as well as Chris Thile & the Punch Brothers. Did get to take in the Carolina Chocolate Drops and Emmy Lou Harris (was great to see Ricky Simpkins up there with her.) For video clips of each, visit my Facebook Page. It was just incredible to see the outpouring of support for the International Bluegrass Music Museum, which puts on the show. If you've never been to visit the museum, I strongly encourage you to do so. They're doing a mighty job of preserving as well as creating Bluegrass Music history every day.

My DP Hopkins signature claw hammer banjo and I started Saturday off with a photo shoot by Bluegrass DJ extraordinaire Darwin Davidson for his 2012 Banjo Girl Calendar. We'll let you know at when that becomes available.

From there, I headed right over to the fiddle workshop, where I met Randy Lanham (who leads a great workshop, by the way.) And, wouldn't you know, my honey showed up along with our niece Amelia. Yea!

Val and Emmy Lou bonded over mammoth Canadian mosquito bites. (Those beasts have got to be as big at the 380 planes!)

As I mentioned before, we hung around for some of the music after our show Paul Simon said, "Gee, but it's great to be back home..." It always takes at least a week for me to get my head straight again after being on tour for such a long time. Give me a day or two to pick our flooring for the music room, oh please, oh please!

Thanks so all of you who followed our adventures these past two months, whether it was on the internet or at the shows. Thanks to all who shared with us their incredible hospitality, friendship, and music. We had an absolute blast! And thanks to all who prayed for our safety (and sanity!) as we traveled far and wide. See you down that road again really soon!