OK. I lost track of things. The annual Country Music Messe in southern Germany, this year in Bayreuth, snuck up on me -- it's this weekend. That is, today and tomorrow.
My friend Willie Jones, who's based near Munich, and his German band are playing both days. And Michael Lonstar, from Poland is also on the program, along with several other folks I've met, photographed, interviewed and video'd over the years, like Daniel T. Coates, who has long been based in Germany but hails from my own home state, Pennsylvania.
Dan's band won the German Country Prize this year.
I've never been to the Country Music Messe in southern Germany -- it's a spin-off of the event that is held every winter in Berlin, which I've attended several times.
Lots of artists go and perform on three (simultaneous) stages, both for the public and for booking agents, festival organizers, et. al. who come to size up acts for the coming year.
Meanwhile, dozens -- scores? hundreds? -- of stands sell country music and wild west stuff, ranging from CDs and DVDs to clothing, housewares, hobbyist supplies, and lots of kitschy tschachkas. Many people who attend are hobbyists of various stripes who dress up to fit the mood and theme. Lots of line-dancing.
Here's some video I shot at the Country Music Messe in Berlin, in 2010
And of course in 2008 -- Don Jensen sang his iconic "Sauerkraut Cowboy" onstage at the Berlin Messe...