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March-April Local Lore brings it all back home!

In this March/April issue Local Lore readers learn about the issues of folk societies all over the U.S. in response to LL's questionnaire on how their organizations are handling things. First of a series! Don't miss this excellent outreach to other folk groups.

Steve Cheseborough reviews Dick Weissman's book, "Bob Dylan's New York," about Bob's life and times in the Big Apple. 

In the President's Letter, PFS President Alana McKenzie keeps tabs on what's doin' and runs the list of events coming up in 2023, including the summertime Strawberry Social, where you can meet other new members like you, while the longtime members host the occasion by making introductions, whipping up cream for delicious Hood strawberries, and setting up the chairs for the informal Song Circle at this fun event. 

Contributor Jory Aronson writes a memoir about The Fingerboard Extension, a Corvallis store envisioned by its late owner Ted as "a store for musicians." Still open today, Keta Toms runs the store with husband Ted's legacy in mind, plus explores a few ideas of her own for the store. 

The Power of a Song" demonstrates that power with examples as when Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania teamed up to sing their hearts out for independence from the USSR; and when our own Paul Rippey sang a song as public testimony to the Portland City Council about no more freeways. Paul realized that a song would be more memorable than a PowerPoint, and five years later, the song is still spreading among anti-freeway activists. 

Barry Gorden, Calendar Editor extraordinaire, highlights learning opportunities as classes, workshops, jams, and even a dance abound in this exciting feature of calendar events! Lots more: look up the Portland FolkMusic Calendar online. 

Contributor Kevin Nordlie interviews guitarist Willy Porter (left) who will be playing at the Alberta Rose Theatre on Friday, April 21st. 

And, of course, we preview two great acts coming up in the PFS Concert Series: John Reischman and The Jaybirds on March 18, and the Honey Whiskey Trio (right) on April 15. Both are loved by many Portland concert goers.

As always, big thanks to Kim and the outstanding team who make Local Lore possible. We are so grateful for the excellence of your work.

If you are a member, you have the option of a digital copy or a paper copy for free; everyone else can download a copy here.

And finally, don't forget that four full years of Local Lores are available to download on the Resources menu above. Enjoy!

Registration open for Singtime 2023!Feinstein

Singtime Frolics, PFS's annual in person music fest at the beautiful Menucha retreat overlooking the Columbia Gorge will be held March 24-26, 2023.

There will be workshops and song circles, jam sessions and good food, walks in the woods and conviviality. Singtime is always fun.

We are very pleased to have Kenny Feinstein as this year's guest artist. Kenny will offer a short concert and a couple of workshops. His music is relaxed and highly listenable, and while he has his roots in bluegrass, he is at home in many genres. He just likes to play music! He will be joined by banjo player Jesse Blue Eads. Having Kenny there will make Singtime 2023 particularly memorable.

Note to Zoomers: I (Paul Rippey) absolutely LOVE Zoom music. I have spent HUNDREDS of hours listening and singing together with friends from all over the world. It's great and in some ways it's better than in person events. But let's get real: in-person events are magical. Hearing harmony. Chatting informally. Hugs and handshakes or whatever you are into. Interacting with other people in workshops. Eating together. In-person is truly great also, and if you can make your way to Menucha, you will love Singtime.

Note to people watching their pennies: Singtime, since forever, has made it possible for everyone who wants to come to be there. Some folks are able to put some extra bucks in the scholarship fund, and they give generously, not as charity, but because they want you to be there. Please let people anonymously support you by asking for a scholarship. If you don't, the money is just gonna sit there gathering dust in a bank account. BOR-ing!

Want to know more? Check out the Singtime page 

Already know all you need to know? Congratulations! We have just tweaked the registration process to make it easier to get exactly the room you want! You can go ahead and register for Singtime now! . Will you be able to get the room you want if you wait until the last minute? Probably not! So do yourself a favor (and do the Singtime team a favor) and REGISTER NOW!

Were you at David's Francey's concert on Saturday Jan 21? It seems like half of Portland was there - most people I've ever seen at a PFS concert. And what a fine entertainer he is. 

One of the songs he sang was appropriate for this time and place: Under The Portland Weather. Check out the video above. 

There are more great concerts coming - check out the Concerts Page!


On the third Saturday of each month, the Virtual Song Circle has a theme.

Our theme for March 18, 2023 will be The Blues.

Feeling sad? Then this is for you. Remember, people didn't invent the blues to make themselves sadder.
They invented the blues to get through the sadness.

Oh... You're not feeling sad? That's okay. Remember,

you are free to ignore the theme altogether and sing something else entirely.
If you know all you need to know about Virtual Song Circlesclick here to join.

If you want to find out more about them, then click here to go to the Song Circle page.

                                         Thanks to Dave Mongeau for the flyer.

Remembering Ken Rice 

PFS lost a long-time member, Ken Rice, 74, when he passed away on January 29, 2023.  Ken, and his wife Ellie Douglas Rice, are well known in PFS as they organized Singtime Frolics for about 10 years when it was at Camp Adams, and held house concerts and song circles for many years.  They are pictured here when they played and sang at Sara Kauffman’s wedding to Garry DeLong.  Ken was a lifetime member of PFS.


Unfortunately, both Ken and Ellie have had numerous health problems in recent years, so they haven’t been able to host PFS events in recent years. Since 2018, Ken and Ellie have lived in Marquis Care assisted living community in Forest Grove, OR. Ken’s passing was somewhat unexpected, following a very recent medical issue. 

Kenneth Marshal Rice was born October 3, 1948, and raised in Palo Alto, California until 1956, when he and his family moved to San Carlos, California. Ken graduated from San Carlos High School Class of 1966, then attended the College of San Mateo, receiving an associate arts degree. He was a Veteran of the Vietnam era, having served one enlistment in the United States Air Force, until he received his honorable discharge.  

Ken was living in Seattle when he and Ellie met in the early 1990’s.  He had worked as a technical writer in the technology industry for Underwriters Laboratory in Redmond, Washington and later for Intel, Inc. in Hillsboro, until he retired. In retirement, Ken not only enjoyed music, but also painted landscapes with oil and ink. 

Jinx Kuehn shared, “Ellie is a very warm person and more than one of us was welcomed by her and encouraged to join PFS. Ellie was so excited when she met Ken!” 

Bill Murlin shared, “Ken and Ellie became engaged while attending a Puget Sound Guitar Workshop summer session.  My former duo, The Wanderers, played at their May 1, 1993 wedding.  I had known Ellie for several years before, as she was very active in PFS, hosting song circles and helping to organize Singtime Frolics.  Ken joined and supported Ellie in all those musical endeavors.  Their Lewis and Clark College-area home was the site of many house concerts and song circles. For a number of years, they also hosted the song circle group headed by Carol Hamilton, with their Christmas gathering being a special event.  While Ken was enthusiastically involved in the folk music scene, he was somewhat bashful as a guitar player and song singer.  Ken found a niche in building instruments, including an autoharp for Ellie; a guitar, a banjo, and a cross between a bass guitar and a cello.”

Board Meeting Tuesday Evening March 28 at 7pm

The PFS Board will hold its February meeting on Tuesday March 28, at 7:00 PM Pacific Time, on Zoom.
All PFS Members are welcome to come and observe. To join the meeting, log into the website by clicking on Member Login in the upper-right hand corner of this page. Once you have logged in, you'll find the link here.

(If you are logging into the site for the first time in a while, you may need to ask for a new temporary password. That just takes a moment. Then you can choose a new permanent password. Your browser will probably ask if you want to remember it; please say Yes, and then it will be easy the next time you come to the website.)


The photos are from a 2008 house concert Ken and Ellie
hosted for Laura Smith of Bellingham and Steve Palazzo, Santa Cruz, CA,
both PSGW teachers.  Laura, Steve and Sandy Bly all sampled
Ken’s instruments during an after-concert gathering. 


Ken and Ellie celebrated their 29th wedding anniversary this past May. Ken is survived by Ellie, two sisters and brothers-in-law, numerous nieces and nephews, and their children. Private Cremation Rites were held at Hoyt Crematory in Forest Grove, Oregon.

Donations in Ken Rice’s honor may be made to Portland Folk Music Society (PFS) Singtime Scholarship fund.  Cards may be sent to Ellie Rice, Room 30, Bed A, Marquis Forest Grove, 3300 19th Ave., Forest Grove, OR  97116.  If you know Ellie well, the phone number at Marquis is 503-357-7119.

Events Calendar

Please check out our events calendar below. Editor Barry Gorden manages to capture almost all the upcoming folk events, but if yours is missing please let us know. The list below shows the next week's events, and is updated continuously.

If you need more, go to the Events menu above and pull down to Folk Calendar. When you go there, you can sort by performances, classes, virtual, radio - whatever you like - and you'll have all the events from now until... well, you'll find everything we know about. If it's not listed here, it's probably not happening.
Upcoming Events
Upcoming Events

Since 1976, Portland FolkMusic Society has been active preserving, presenting and promoting folk music and arts in the greater Portland Oregon area. PFS sponsors song circles, concerts, workshops and retreats – in person and virtual – and helps its members and the whole community pass the word around about folk music events, from old time ballads to sea shanties, from 60’s protest folk to contemporary singer-songwriters.

PFS is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization. 

Portland FolkMusic Society
P.O. Box 1448
Portland, OR 97207-1448
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