No Depression Festival and the High School mind.
I am young and a student at Peninsula High School in the small community of Gig Harbor, Washington. As I type, I am avoiding my math assignments and my Spanish final studies so that I might touch on the likes of Gillian Welch and her partner David Rawlings in attempt to earn tickets to the No Depression Festival which will reside about one hour away from my small home in the cookie cutter suburbs.
I live for American Music and there is no common question that Gillian Welch is the quick breath of revival to the dying soul of popular folk and alternative country music. She came on the scene before my time and remained undetected. After her debut Revival (which utilized the skills of then unsung Dylan prodigy, T-Bone Burnett), she continued to produce low-key masterpieces with her incendiary renaissance cowboy Mr. David Rawlings, and now is the collaboration queen of our generation, working with folks such as indie deity, Conor Oberst, the angelic Emmylou Harris and the prolific Ryan Adams.
Through their latest release (2003’s Soul Journey), the duo was able to demonstrate their sensitive side sans the buckwheat and corn whiskey imagery. With a tasteful Mississippi John Hurt overhauling and numerous Welch gems depicting every deadly sin from envy to lust, Rawlings and Welch transcended their rough and blood stained stereotypes and reinvented the American opinion of what singer-songwriters can really accomplish.
Behind the necks of their two guitars the gravel coated twang, quietly reappeared in June of 2008 when the two opened for Jenny Lewis’s less-than-country counterpart Rilo Kiley to try out a few new barn-jogging tunes in the sanctuary of embracive indie crowd.
It has been five years now, since we have been graced with the down-home style of the most important musicians of our time and we can only hope that with the upcoming No Depression Festival, Gillian and David regale us with what they have been hiding these past years and treat us Northwestern outsiders to what real American music has to offer.
Sunshine or Moonshine, We will be there to greet them with overdue ears and only the friendliest of expectations.