Black Masala lead a parade at Sleepy Creek SpringDig 2018. (Photo by Chester Simpson)
Sleepy Creek SpringDig returned May 4-6, 2018 for its fifth year to the region’s favorite family-friendly venue, Sleepy Creek on the Potomac in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia. The annual camp-out offers a stellar line-up of local roots music and national superstars, with added attractions such as playgrounds and parades. Chester Simpson took some photos of this year’s Sleepy Creek SpringDig, and folk musician Sally Mae Foster wrote some words to accompany them!
Paul Humphreys and Andy McCluskey (right) of Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (Photo courtesy Ticketfly)
The brilliant Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (OMD) released The Punishment of Luxury, their 13th studio album, on Sept. 1 via 100% Records subsidiary White Noise. The album fared very well commercially, hitting #4 on the UK Albums chart as well as #7 on the US Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart.
I had the genuine pleasure of again chatting with Andy McCluskey, vocalist, bassist, keyboardist, and songwriter for OMD, as the band will launch a North American Tour with a performance at 9:30 Club on March 6, 2018. (It’s not officially announced by 9:30 Club yet, but buy your tickets online here.)
In our chat, Andy provides insights into songs on The Punishment of Luxury, shares his feelings on recent work by Gary Numan and New Order, and reveals artists (with some surprises) with whom OMD would like to collaborate (particularly as they approach their 40th anniversary as a band).
I babbled a bit more than usual because he’s a personal hero, and as such my interview covered a lot of ground. I’ve edited the order of the questions to improve their logical flow and trimmed them where necessary for brevity. (Also, perhaps read our previous Parklife DC interview with Andy McCluskey from May 2016.)
Iggy Pop at the Old Waldorf, San Francisco, 1977, by Chester Simpson (also found on Page 79 of Smithsonian Rock and Roll: Live and Unseen).
On Oct. 24, Smithsonian Books published a vivid collection of rock photos titled Smithsonian Rock and Roll: Live and Unseen by Bill Bentley. Bill may have written the book, but it pools photographs from many sources, including our own Chester Simpson, who contributed seven of the 350 pictures to the project.
This Way to the Egress perform at HarFest 2017. (Photo by Chester Simpson)
Sleepy Creek actually started over 10 years ago as a house party on the hill at the venue owners’ property in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia every Apple Butter Weekend.
The Psychedelic Furs perform at The Birchmere on Oct. 4, 2017. (Photo by Chester Simpson)
Richard Butler was a joy to behold.
With boundless energy, the frontman of The Psychedelic Furs swept the audience up in a dance for an 18-song set on the band’s Singles Tour on Wednesday at The Birchmere. He so relished the opportunity to perform live that he couldn’t stop beaming.
Keller Williams performs at Watermelon Park Festival. (Photo by Chester Simpson)
The 14th Annual Watermelon Park Fest, located in Berryville, Virginia, was held on the banks of the Shenandoah River on Sept. 21-24.
Billy Strings performs at Deep Roots Mountain Revival in Masontown, West Virginia, last weekend. (Photo by Chester Simpson)
Last weekend, revelers gathered at Marvin’s Mountaintop in Masontown, West Virginia, for the second annual Deep Roots Mountain Revival to enjoy Americana, bluegrass, and more with headliners Brandi Carlile, Dr. Dog, and Lettuce. Our friend Chester Simpson was there and took some photos of some of his favorite bands!
Attendees watch a performance at the River and Roots Festival in June. (Photo by Chester Simpson)
The fourth annual River and Roots Festival, hosted by Shepherds Ford Productions, was held outside of Berryville, Virginia (not far from Winchester) on Friday, June 23, through Sunday, June 25 with a lineup of bluegrass, Americana, and roots musicians. Check out these pictures of the festival!
The Red Wing Roots Music Festival at Natural Chimneys Park. (Photo by Chester Simpson)
Red Wing Roots Festival, a family-friendly celebration of music, features kids events and activities and bike rides in the park. Red Wings V was held in Natural Chimneys Park on July 14-16.
The Steel Wheels will headline Red Wing Roots Music Festival (Photo by Chester Simpson)
Black Bear Productions will present the Red Wing Roots Music Festival in Natural Chimneys Park in Mt. Solon, Virginia, on July 14-16, 2017. Tickets for one day or all three days are available.