Friday, April 27, 2007

Celebrating tradition with Hippie Jack

New festivals are sprouting up all over--each with its own reason for coming into being. The genesis for Jammin at Hippie Jack's, set for Memorial Day weekend in rural Tennessee, was set in motion when photograpy supplier AGFA discontinued selling a particular specialty paper that lensman Jack Stoddard used to achieve a trademark look in his photos of traditional farmers and fisherman.

Changing technology in his own craft mirrored the subject of his work--how technology was driving out traditional ways of living and working. His award-winning work had attracted the attention of central Tennessee public television station WCTE, which worked with him to create a television series celebrating traditional, old-timey music--another endangered folk tradition. To film the televised concerts, a sound stage was constructed on Stoddard's farm outside Monterey TN.

Once the stage was set, it was just a small jump to decide to produce a full-fledged Americana music festival. So now the first Jammin at Hippie Jack's is scheduled for Memorial Day weekend, with a full lineup of jamgrass, bluegrass, folk and blues--as well as creekside camping, gourmet barbeque, crafts gallery, and (no surprise) a display of Stoddard's original photography.

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