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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Music even an old guy can appreciate

S-R editor shares insights from his view of Elkfest

Soon after I moved into an apartment in the Avenida building in early 2013, a friendly neighbor warned that I would surely wish I had left on vacation during Elkfest.

Though I had never attended Elkfest, which I soon learned takes place within earshot of my apartment, I was not concerned. If nothing else, I figured, I could always turn off my hearing aids. (Reader hint No. 1: I’m 64.)

So, Elkfest came last June, and I was delightfully surprised, even though I am not an expert on any form of music. (Reader hint No. 2: I was “asked” to leave the choir class in fourth grade.) I sat in a lawn chair outside my back door that leads to the fire escape. With appropriate beverage in hand, along with plenty of reading material, I settled in to listen.

I tweeted a variety of supposedly funny quips about band names, sounds, the Tambourine Man and the crowd. (Reader hint No. 3: Three of my fans – OK, they work for me – said my tweets were hilarious. The rest of the world ignored me, as they should.)

One performer in particular, an Australian named Blake Nobel, really appealed to me. He plays the 12-string guitar (who knew they had that many?) and the didgeridoo (I am not making this up). After his performance, I climbed down the fire escape stairs and walked over to buy his CD. I struck up a conversation with Michelle Bounds, the person selling the merch (See, old people can use hip terms). Turns out she is Nobel’s longtime girlfriend and publicist. Her day job involves selling bras at a Nordstrom store in Seattle. But I digress.

I’ve heard Nobel play at two other venues, one in Spokane and at last fall’s Chinook Fest near Yakima. Perhaps that qualifies me now to be an old-guy groupie? Nobel is now touring in France, by the way. I’m not.

Anyhow, I share this fascinating look into my world of music to assure spectators that there’s music for all ages at Elkfest. I’ll be in my fire escape suite again this weekend, tweeting knee-slappers (an old guy’s term) and enjoying the sounds. Wave or climb up to say hello. (Reader hint No. 4: I have two extra chairs.)

Follow Graham on Twitter, @GLgraham.
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