Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Cowboyland -- Italian Wild West Theme Park

OK -- Here's the link to Cowboyland, billed as the only wild west theme park in Italy. I can't wait to go, and I'll try to do so soon, if possible. It seems to be open every weekend in October.

It is located outside Voghera, and seems to be associated with the Cowboy Guest Ranch, also near Voghera, which hosts a variety of activities -- including a big rodeos -- the next in Oct. 12-13. The western scene in Italy is centered on horses and western riding. Country music (and trucks....) play only a marginal role.

There is (or was) a magazine called WesternSide that chronicled the scene (the web site is somewhat out of date) and I've attended several editions of "western games" at the ranchlike Tenuta Santa Barbara near Lake Bracciano near Rome, which included rodeo-style riding competitions as well as a variety of exhibitions, stands, etc. It's not clear from the web site if these are still going on.....

Monday, September 22, 2008

New or Newish Italian Wild West Themepark

Saw a big advertisement for a new wild west theme park in Italy. Or at least I think it's new. I may have heard about it earlier this year. It seems to be open into the fall, on weekends, so I'll try to get there -- the northern city of Voghera -- and report. Meanwhile we can all visit the website -- (am having trouble posting the link....).

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Upcoming Bluegrass Fest in Bratislava

(Czech band Relief performing in 2007. Photo (c) Ruth Ellen Gruber.)

There are DOZENS of bluegrass and country music festivals, big and small, in the Czech Republic and Slovakia each year....the two Czech festivals I attended last month in the towns of Frydek Mistek and Chotebor were on the small or smallish side.

A more major festival, whose line up looks great, is coming up next month in Bratislava, the Slovak capital.

The third Bratislava Bluegrass Fest will feature top Czech and Slovak artists such as Monogram, Garcia, Peter Dula, Relief, Alan Mikusek, etc etc etc.

The web site includes clips of songs from each artist.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Video of Tony Trischka and Druha Trava

I've been lax about posting -- I still am transcribing the interview I did with Tony Trischka last month, which I hope to post soon. Meanwhile, here's a (blurry) video clip I shot of Tony and DT performing Nashville Rag in Frydek Mistek.