Monday, July 27, 2009

Council Farmer’s Market

As regular readers know, I’ve been very happily busking at the monthly Council Saturday Market since this April, & this past Saturday Eberle came with me to lend a hand with set-up & to provide the invaluable service of a sound check—very difficult to do either by yourself or with the assistance of people who aren’t accustomed to listening to amplified sound in terms of finding a good balance & an appropriate volume level. Eberle also was inspired to take lots of photos, & I’m posting the highlights.

The Council Saturday Market—its official name—is th
e brainchild of Cindy, proprietor of the local floral/garden shop (I should add this is one of the town’s very best shops). During her regular Saturday business hours (10:00 to 2:00) various vendors set up in the lot next to her shop & sell wares ranging from beauty products to homemade bread. The market takes place on the last Saturday of the month from April thru August. I gave Cindy a call back last April—I think only a few days before the first market—pretty much on a whim. She was very enthusiastic about having live music, & I’ve enjoyed participating in the market a lot. Both Cindy & the vendors have been very supportive & helpful, & it’s a great atmosphere for playing.

But back to Saturday, & speaking of highlights: to me the real highlight was when Eberle returned to join in on the final set. We roared thru some favorites, including “The Mean Old Bedbug Blues” (a Bessie Smith tune), “Joliet Bound” (Memphis Minnie & earlier in a different form by Cannon’s Jug Stompers) & Taj Mahal’s rousing “Gonna Move Up to the Country (& Paint My Mailbox Blue). From my solo portion, I was particularly happy with two Blind Lemon Jefferson songs: “Matchbox Blues” & “Two White Horses” (AKA “Please See My Grave is Kept Clean”) both of which are pretty new to my repertoire, & both of which I sang to banjo accompaniment. I also was happy with the way another new addition sounded (this one a guitar song): the Howling Wolf song “I Ain’t Superstitious.”

The market really has been a great experience—just on
e more month, sadly—& I’ve picked up some nice mad money, as well as some fringe benefits—like free produce! I’m always happy to sing & play for food.

Hope you enjoy the pix.

Yours truly with Regal resonator guitar; was I ever grateful for that umbrella, which was dropped off for me by our friend Sue P.

Some very nice folks with various lotions & creams.

Homemade bread & jam! I exchanged some stories about catching (& eating) crawdads with this nice person during a break.

Some great people from the small mountain town of Cuprum; the gentleman has self-published a chronicle of Cuprum called "Thunder in the Mountains" on I'm getting me one of them Cuprum centennial caps next time I have the chance!

Yours truly again picking a bit of banjo. You can see Buffy the Buffalo right behind me atop the cooler.

Cindy (to the left) & her sister in the little shed that was used for selling produce this month; in June it was used for selling fireworks. Check out the corn & berries in those galvanized tubs!

A view down Council's main drag, Michigan Ave.

The floral shop sign, complete with carved bears.

Guitar player with squash.

Tip Chick has a message for everybody.


  1. The pictures provide a wonderful sense of place. I looked up Council on Google Earth so I could get it in context. So, for one reader, you have put Council on the map.

  2. oh, how fun! I love the Tip Chick btw. Does everyone wear a hat to sell their produce? Was it a rip-roaring hot one that day?

  3. I love farm markets. And you look pretty darn snazzy in that hat, John. Are you sure it's not Harry Trumans?

  4. Hi Alan & Chris & Willow

    Alan: Thanks--that's cool that you were inspired to look up Council on Google Earth!

    Chris: It was really hot. It was a day when shade was crucial, but when shade only did so much good. We get a lot of 100+ degree days here in July & August.

    Willow: That's a good one. No, not Give Em Hell Harry's; I bought it in Savannah, Georgia back in the mid 80s. Thanks!

  5. Grat Photos and it looks like a Great Community.Great Set List!

  6. Hi Tony:

    Thanks--the market folk are a great community in themselves!

  7. John, that looks like a lot of fun. :-)

  8. Looks like a fun time. I visit my local farmers' market every week. I wish you and Eberle were there playing, and in that great hat.

  9. Looks like a good market to wander into. What a treat those visitors get. A bliss moment affair.


  10. Hi Linda & Jacqueline & Randy

    Linda: Yes, it is fun!

    Jacqueline: Hey, I wish we could play there, too!

    Randy: Thanks! I think the folks in Council could make more of the market, but the people who do show definitely appreciate it.


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