The Mariposa Folk Festival, now entering into its tenth year, is the longest running folk festival still in business. Held on Toronto's beautiful Centre Island, this festival has managed to survive so long due to the combination of the rustic, unpolluted setting, limited sales, lots of good clean un-American music (that is to say commercialism just doesn't make it there) and a hard core of people that would travel a million miles out of their way to hear good folk music.
In the past such great stars as Joan Baez, Neil Young, Howlin' Wolf and Jean Ritchie have performed to delighted audiences and this year is to be no exception.
Joni Mitchell, back to perform her first concert in North America in close to eight months, heads an all-start cast which includes James Taylor, Odetta, Ramblin' Jack Elliot, Doug Kershaw, David Rea, Merle Travis, Mississippi Fred McDowell, the always popular Michael Cooney and many more. During the day workshops are held in which professionals and amateurs alike can get together and play and talk music to their hearts' content. It is quite an education.
New to the festival this year is a contingent of Indians from various tribes. They will be presenting their music and culture on their own time schedule, so if you want to find out when and what they're doing, you have to see the Indians personally. Dig it!
Another noteworthy group is the Perth County Conspiracy, who are members of a Canadian commune, and their main forte is a unique kind of musical theatre. They also plan to give out free of charge food that they grow in their commune.
From the opening act on Friday night of a group of Eskimo Drum Dancers to the closing act on Sunday night, Mariposa promises quite an exciting time for all. The tickets are inexpensive and can be purchased at the Norton Hall ticket office.
If you're looking for another Woodstock, Mariposa is not the place to come. Mariposa is a beautiful peace festival in its own right, and should be accepted as such. Woodstock people go follow your rainbow elsewhere. You can call me a fascist pig if you want. I don't give a fuck. But I'll "see you after the Revolution when, of course, it'll be business as usual."
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