Last week I demonstrated my new webcam with a tune, but I didn't actually purchase it to fill your lives with the glories of music. I had an ulterior motive, which I shall now reveal.
There is a group of folk music fans in New Jersey called the Folk Project, and they have retreats twice a year where people go to a camp and play music together. Good times.
Well, recently they added a new feature to these weekends: a book club. The coordinator chooses a book related to folk music and you can guess the rest.
A few months ago the title was announced for the spring retreat: SUCH A KILLING CRIME, a mystery set in Greenwich Village during the great folk music scare of 1963.
One member of the Folk Project is Lori Falco, and she and I have been friends since we met while waiting for a bus on the first day of high school. quite a few years ago. Lori asked the coordinator: "Do you know the author of that book used to be a member of the Folk Project?"
The coordinator had not known that. But I was promptly invited to come to the retreat for the discussion. That wasn't possible but I got a webcam and a skype account and made a virtual appearance.
It was a lot of fun. Oh, the usual technical hiccups (no matter how long Lori and I spent prepping before the show started). Interested people asking good questions. My favorite: "What was it like putting words in Phil Ochs' mouth?"
My answer: not as scary as putting words in the mouth of Tom Paxton. After all, Tom is still alive. Therefore I was extremely careful to make him a sympathetic character. (Even though he offered to be the murderer. And he graciously gave me the following blurb: "Spooky. If I'd have known he was watching us so carefully, I would have been MUCH better."
Well, I had a good time and I would like the chance to chat with ALL the folk music book clubs in the world. Unfortunately, I suspect I just did.
On a related note, Kearney Street Books informed me this week that SUCH A KILLING CRIME is now available on Kindle, for those who don't care to read their books, uh, acoustically.
Not the future anyone was expecting in 1963, huh?