Alaska's fiddling poet is at Gayville March 5 Gayville Hall opens its fifth season of musical entertainment with Alaska's fiddling poet, Ken Waldman, and the hall's musical hosts, John and Susan McNeill, in performance at 8 p.m. on Saturday, March 5, in Gayville.
A former college professor with three acclaimed CDs of his poetry and fiddling, Waldman has worked full-time since 1994 as Alaska's Fiddling Poet, performing at some of the nation's leading clubs, bookstores, universities and arts festivals and garnering rave reviews in Dirty Linen, Sing Out! and Old-Time Herald, among many others.
In 2000, Waldman released his first CD, A Week in Eek, a collaboration with Vancouver banjo and flute player Andrea Cooper which featured poems read over old-time fiddle music, a mix of traditional Appalachian tunes and originals he composed in the style.
It received strong reviews, as did his more recent two CDs, Burnt Down House and Music Party.
Waldman has headlined in such venues as The Knitting Factory in New York City and The Kennedy Center in Washington, DC.
His first full-length poetry collection, Nome Poems, now in its second printing, was published in 2000 by West End Press of Albuquerque. It chronicles the two years Waldman spent teaching writing at the Nome campus of the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Also included is a section about a 1996 plane crash that led locals to refer to him as "a walking dead man."
In 2002, West End published a second collection, To Live on this Earth, including a number about old-time music and dance.
Gayville Hall is located at 502 Washington Street in Gayville. Tickets are $10 at the door or $12.50 for a reserved seat. Call (605)-267-2859.