If you don’t get out and catch Dick Weissman’s Goodbye Portland CD Release show at Café Artichoke, Saturday, March 23, it may be awhile before his bootheels wander back this way. He’s performing music from his just released Near and Far before returning to Colorado.
Weissman has lived here the last 10 years and since his early days performing with The Journeymen (during what Utah Phillips called “The Great Folk Music Scare of the early 1960s”), he has continued to be prolific, inventive and non stop, with 9 solo albums, 18 published books 50 instructional books for banjo and guitar and countless classes and workshops.
The Southeast Examiner caught up with the very busy Weissman recently and he had plenty to say: “I’m always trying to break the envelope with the banjo. This new album has a tune called Brazilian Bossa Rag, which includes scat singing by Mollie O’Brien. It has a flamenco-ish solo piece called Banjo Duende, duets with banjo and English horn, banjo and oboe d’amore, and banjo and soprano saxophone. I think it has some of the best recorded guitar music I’ve written, including a piece dedicated to the late Scott McKenzie, and another for Artie Traum.
“There’s an improvised 12 string guitar piece that is my reaction to the suicide of Kirk Reeves. Kirk was a 55-ish gentleman who stood on the East entrance to the Hawthorne bridge, played his trumpet and juggled. He always dressed in a tuxedo, as though he were going to a formal gig. He brought much happiness to kids of all ages, and he will be one of my enduring memories of Portland.”
“I have many friends in Portland and Eugene, and I will miss them, and I will surely miss Powells Bookstore, which has all too much of my money!” www. dickweissman.com .
Café Artichoke is behind Artichoke Music at 3130 SE Hawthorne Blvd. Music starts at 8 pm and tickets are $10. Go early for seats. The room is intimate the sound is great and Dick Weissman is one of a kind.