Kerrville: That's a Wrap!

Well, that's a wrap on the Kerrville Folk Festival in Kerrville, Texas, where songwriters from all over the world gather to celebrate songwriting and the creative spirit. 

Here's a quick recap: The Grassy Hill New Folk Song Contest happens over Memorial Day weekend in Kerrville, TX. Out of 1341 entries this year -- a record! -- there were 24 finalists. One of them was my husband Robin Bienemann, another was our dear friend Katie Dahl of Door County, Wisconsin. 

Robin was one of the six award winners, and in the week between the competition and the 2024 New Folk Award Winners Concert that happened all week, we attended Song School. Taught by Mary Bragg, Scott Cook, Vance Gilbert and Steve Seskin, they shared insight into the art, craft and business of songwriting. 

We, who's job it is to "play" music, actually took time to PLAY! 

That's how this "Gangs of Kerrville" series came to be. Between these photos and YouTubes of the Grassy Hill New Folk competition from May 25 and 26, and the Award Winners contest you'll get a sense of this place, these people, their songs, voices and points of view. 

And yet, even as just a plus one, and the plus one of a "winner" at that, it was a deeply emotional experience with unexpected highs and lows - and I'm not just talking about the weather (though it did reach 106 one day (!). Maybe when the dust settles, I'll have more to share.

For now, the sense of gratitude for music, art, community and friends like you is profound.

Do we ever truly give ourselves enough time to take it all in?

After this week, I'm going to make a point of doing that more often. I hope you will too.

 

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