ABERDEEN, S.D. – Two more musical performances are scheduled in conjunction with a Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibition on display at Northern State University’s Williams Library.
The performances, which are free and open to the public, will both be at Williams Library. They are: Pete Burckhard, acoustic blues performance, 7 p.m. June 6; and Flying Pig Fiddle & Banjo Band, old-time Southern Appalachian string band, 3 p.m. June 10.
Burckhard has been playing guitar since he was 8 years old – a $20 Stella with "razor blades for strings." At 13, he discovered the music that would be his life’s study. In South Dakota, this kind of music was unknown, but Burckhard searched hard and long to learn the songs and the culture that he found to be the blues. Throughout his life, he has always had his heart in blues while playing and singing in rock, jazz and blues bands around this part of the country.
“The Smithsonian tour is an opportunity for me to teach a little about the enormous and important influence of the blues, and Delta blues in particular, on every other genre of American music,” he said. “The blues have been a lifelong study of mine, and one that I enjoy sharing.”
Dave Losure and Mary Schaeffer-Losure will perform as “Flying Pig Fiddle & Banjo.” Traveling from their farm home in central Iowa, the couple brings a passion for playing old-time southern Appalachian string band music on fiddles, fretless banjo, banjo-mandolin, mountain dulcimer, guitar and rhythm instruments. This is tap-your-foot dance music learned live from older generations, and recordings made in the field and in studios during the 1920s and 30s. The tunes are of Celtic origin and were carried by immigration to the Southeastern states, where they mixed with African and American Indian rhythms, and have been played in homes and barns for dancers from the time of settlement to the present.
“New Harmonies: Celebrating American Roots Music,” which will be on display at Williams Library through June 10, is hosted by NSU in cooperation with the South Dakota Humanities Council. The exhibit, designed for viewers grade 4 and up, includes photographs, recordings, instruments, lyrics and artist profiles.
For information, visit "New Harmonies."