Crazy Like Me?

Folkies were avid folk music junkies into alternative and bohemian lifestyles. We were not Hippies. Here are some tales about my experiences.


There was a tinge of green, right around where gills would be if the Teahead had been a fish. But of course, the Teahead of the August Moon was a fully mammalian human, and the concoction on his face was the latest attempt to correct an unfortunate complexion that periodically oozed zits.


was preparing to take out the recycle bin when this “dead soldier” caught my eye. The bottle is an empty jug of spiced rum that powered my don’t drink and then drive fruitcake. Momentarily I was transported to my early days. I took the cap off and began blowing an accompaniment to Washington at Valley Forge, a perennial favorite of 1960’s jug bands.

Clean Up

It may have been the Monk who got it into his mind that cleaning the apartment for the New Year’s was a good and worthy thing to do. ” a new broom sweeps clean for a New Year,” he stated. Most of the other habitues of the Folkie Palace just looked at him as though he was crazed.


I’ve frequently been accused of being less than jovial, but not quite irascible. One friend from Brooklyn has advised me that it derives from being a New Yorker. Mindful that this is a trait he seems to share with me, he distracts the conversation before it descends into an unfair comparison of Manhattenite versus Brooklynite.


When I decided to get my act together at the beginning of the 1970’s I faced some challenges—education beyond high school costs money and friends’ attitudes. The GI Bill solved the first. There was a program to assist vets in getting their high school diplomas. The nice part was that using the program would not count towards my available college benefits.


Bob and Chris had a large family. My friend and I often got included in the count at their home due to our frequent visits. We claimed spare space in their home for our regular appearances, and during the sixties, were well known by the kids; their eccentric uncles.

snazzy jacket!!!


Being a folksinger was not easy. You had to practice your material, be unafraid of deadly silence from displeased audiences, and come up with clever patter between songs. You wanted to avoid embarrassing silences between songs that might invite your audience to depart midway in your set. Moreover, being eighteen meant that you could not wow them with tales of your daring rides across the country in the dust bowl riding the rails. You had to be subtle.


I caught the final bars of the Hesitation Blues as I entered the coffeehouse, “…can I get you now, or must I hesitate.” Pat’s finishing off with one of his signature songs suggested that it had been a good set for him.


a few bears into him, and the Teahead’s childhood friend Buddy could unwind and appear somewhat normal. Unlike the rest of the folkies Buddy, got up early every morning, put on a suit, and went to law school.


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