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Scott Alarik

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What artists are saying

December 22, 2011

Scott Alarik has long been one of the wisest and most literate voices on the folk scene, from his articles and books to his own passionate songwriting, storytelling and performances.
       
        Now, in this novel by a poet, Scott brings his formidable powers of observation and analysis to folk music past, present and future.  Set in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where all folk roads meet, Scott's novel is at once a story of of music and manners, of darkness and light, of love and redemption.
       
        This finely wrought, emotionally gripping tale, told with great humor, also contains a wealth of practical information on the quixotic task of attempting to make a living and a life in the crazy, wonderful world of folk music.  From the perspective of the hundreds of the thousands of musicians trying to make their musical mark, it could just as easily have been called Survival.  It would be a foolish folkie indeed who doesn't have a well thumb-picked copy in their gig bag.
       
        Revival's great strength, though, is not in the practical survival tips it passes on, whether for its characters or for its readers.  It's in Scott Alarik's vision of folk music as a  cooperative community with important work to do in the world: Lifting spirits, bringing people together, helping them celebrate or mourn life's and death's transitions; helping people cry and laugh; encouraging = supporting people to have more courage; naming and standing up to power wrongfully exercised; disabling those who abuse power and ethics by making gentle/sometimes not so gentle fun of them; and, when necessary, sounding the battle cry of freedom, in four part harmony.
       
        Music lifts us up.  So does Scott Alarik's Revival.
       

by Si Kahn, Songwriter, Activist, and Author

updated: 4 years ago