(Originally published on February 28, 2011)
Stories Flohil tells: Even more true tales from 60 years of musi
THIS WEEK: Ed McCurdy, Chuck Berry, Ed Glinert, Bob Dylan, Andrea Ramolo and other independent women, Rob Ford (maybe Toronto’s next mayor), Bob Mersereau, Nigel Best, Andrea England, surprising new books to read, The Beatles, Dave Gunning, Kendel Carson, and Soko a French artist you’ve probably never heard of…
Old, difficult and in the way
Someone asked me last night who were the most difficult people I’ve ever had to deal with.
Right up there was the late Ed McCurdy, the folk artist who wrote the wonderful song “Last Night I had the Strangest Dream” (which Serena Ryder covered more recently). I’d hired him for the 30th annual Mariposa Folk Festival — Jeez, was that really 20 years ago? — as one of the four acts still alive who had played the very first one.
McCurdy was old, grumpy and demanding, and made numerous demands that kept the volunteers hopping. “Oh God, he’s an irascible old fart,” I moaned.
Later that day, he came up to me. “Young man,” he said in a stentorian voice. “I hear that you’ve been calling me an irascible old fart.” Blushing, stammering and stuttering, I apologized.
“No need for that,” he said grandly. “I AM an irascible old fart. And I LIKE that description. I shall use it again!” [click to continue…]