Big Muddy Folk Festival creates an energy that is "spectacular"

7 months 1 week 5 days ago Saturday, April 06 2019 Apr 6, 2019 Saturday, April 06, 2019 6:36:00 PM CDT April 06, 2019 in News
By: Caitlin McCarthy, KOMU 8 Reporter

BOONVILLE - The 28th annual Big Muddy Folk Festival continued Saturday, bringing together musicians from across the country. 

Cathy Barton and Dave Para started the festival. It is sponsored by the Friends of Historic Boonville each year.

The main event took place in the historic Thespian Hall on Main Street.

The Alferd Packer Memorial Band was one of the bands to return to the stage and play with other folk musicians.

Band member Noah Musser said he likes the energy of the festival.

"Well there's sort of this energy when everybody gets together, and you just don't really know what's going to happen," Musser said. "Like I say, everybody is talented enough to play any kind of music they want to and they all choose to play at the same time."

The band was started nearly 40 years ago and plays a "conglomeration of sounds" related to folk music. 

Matt Kirby, another band member, said the folk music "speaks to people" and can bring them together.

"Feel free to express yourself with this music," Kirby said. "Find an instrument. If an instrument kind of cries out to you, well then you're supposed to be there."

Kirby said he loves this festival because of its historic location and the other musicians who play at it every year. 

Kelly Smith, the executive director of the festival, said the "jam sessions" the musicians have with each other adds to the atmosphere.

However, the variety of folk musicians is what she said makes the festival even more special.

"We bring a lot of performers to the Big Muddy Folk Festival form other parts of the country and then their fans come to find out what the festival is all about and become fans of other artists," Smith said.

She said the festival is a platform for a variety of performers.

"It's great exposure for different types of folk music," Smith said. 

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