This is Folk Music at its best! Betty and the Baby Boomers delivered at Amsterdam’s Riverlink Park on Saturday evening. This Hudson Valley group of musicians/environmental educators have been perfecting harmonies and delivering their message of peace and ecology for over 25 years. Betty Boomer, Steve Stanne, Jean Valla-McAvoy, Paul Rubeo and Robert Bard brought a repertoire of classic Folk songs, river songs and some original material.
This blogger is a fan of the Boomers first album I’ll Always Sing and the group performed a few songs from that album including Jean’s beautiful rendition of Caledonia that brings tears to my eyes. A bit of local history, the song Bright Mohawk Valley performed by the group was written right here and adopted by many other places. The song appears in sheet music, titled In the Bright Mohawk Valley, printed in New York in 1896 with James J. Kerrigan as the writer. It later became popular as Red River Valley.
Near the end of their second set the Boomers expertly performed Pete Seeger’s classic peace song Turn, Turn, Turn. For a special treat, the Boomers brought along Lynn Saoirse, a harpist from Connemara in County Galway, who not only played a song with the band but also played duets with both Stanne and McEvoy.
It was great seeing old friends that I had not talked with for over 20 years. The time just melts away, like it never happened.