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The Festival CD: 40 Years, 40 Artists, 40 Songs

Folk Music Lives Here!

It’s All about Community and Love of Music

(from the liner notes)  “Is this folk music?” It seems to be one of those perennial questions, doesn’t it? At least it is here in Shawano, where we’ve asked that question for the past 40 years. And every year our answer is, “Yeah, of course it’s Folk Music!” And Roots Music and Americana and World Music and Jazz and Blues and R&B and Swing and Jug Band Music and Rock and Country and Gospel and Classical and … New and Old and Traditional and Contemporary. It’s Choral and Acapella and Instrumental. It’s Folk Music – the way we do it here in Shawano.

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When it came time to select 40 songs for this collection, we wanted to make sure it represented the vast array of musical styles and genres we’ve treasured for the past 40 years. It was a daunting task. After all, more than 450 musicians have graced our stages, some of them returning again and again, while others gave only one memorable performance. The first part of our task was to whittle those 450+ down to 40 musicians who represented our eclectic festival. We wanted to make sure each of our 40 years was represented by at least one musician. So we listened to music. Lots of music. Then we listened to more, and we did it again. We wanted solo artists and duos and full bands and men and women and fiddles and drums and dance music and guitars and mandolins and accordions and fast music and slow music and soothing music and rousing music. We wanted songs to make you laugh and songs to make you cry. Songs to dance to and songs to hum while gazing at the stars.  Songs to sing with friends and family in living rooms and on back porches, and songs to sing loud and off-key in the car. Songs to bind us all together in families, communities and generations. It’s all folk music, and we wanted it all.


Here it is. 40 Years, 40 Artists, 40 Songs. It’s Folk Music, Shawano style. 

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40 Artists

Lou and Peter Berryman

LJ Booth

Bryan Bowers

Randy Bruce

Caravan Gypsy Swing Ensemble

Carolyn Carter

Paul Cebar

Andy Cohen

Joe Crookston

Mark Dvorak

Wade Fernandez


Anne Hills

Joe Jenks (Brother Sun)

Skip Jones

Jutta and the Hi-Dukes

Lost World String Band

Jan Marra

John McCutcheon

Bill Miller

Don Morman Family Band

Mustard's Retreat


Tom Paxton

Tom Pease

Larry Penn

Robin Pluer

Lil' Rev

Sally Rogers

Sparky Rucker

Randy Sabien

Claudia Schmidt

AnnaLee Scully

Michael Peter Smith

Bill Staines

Stas Venglevski & Mischa Litvin

Matt Watroba


Jack Williams

Dorothy Zerbe

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