Let us go to the banks of the ocean
Where the walls rise above the Zuider Zee
Long ago I used to be a young man
And dear Margaret remembers that for me
Can you hear that tune in your head? Michael P. Smith’s song “The Dutchman” is considered a classic in the folk community, recorded by Steve Goodman, Liam Clancy, and Tommy Makem, among many others. I still remember the first time I heard it, at a concert by the Clancy Brothers many years ago at a theatre in Vermont; such a poignant song that it brought tears to my eyes.
Smith performs at Golden Link on Saturday, April 13 at 7:30 pm. Considered a master of the story song, he brings to life characters like Margaret and her Dutchman, the riverboat gamblers in “Spoon River,” schoolteacher Sister Clarissa, and the beautiful princess and the talking frog (not all his songs are serious; some are hilarious).
Time and again, audiences report that an evening with him is an unforgettable experience, filled with stirring vocals, stories, and his fine guitar playing. He is also an award-winning composer, including receiving the prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Award in 2010 for his adaptation of The Snow Queen, for which he also wrote the musical score. His latest project features original songs inspired by Melville’s seminal American classic, Moby Dick.
For a sample of his music, here's a video of Smith singing "Famous in France":
Michael P. Smith is based in Chicago and doesn’t often come east – so don’t miss this concert!
Next month, we will mark Pete Seeger’s 100th birthday on the day itself, May 3, with a special concert by Joe Jencks & Maria Dunn. Note that concert is a Friday, not our usual Saturday. We will close out the season on June 8 with a rescheduled concert with The LYNNeS – postponed after the January snowstorm.
Keep on singing!
– Janice Hanson
Janice Hanson is Concert Chair of the Golden Link Folk Singing Society, which was founded in 1971 to present, promote, and preserve folk music in the Rochester area.