MusicfestNW

Frank Fairfield, Hurray for the Riff Raff, The Lonesome Billies

When: Fri., Sept. 6, 9 p.m. 2013

There is a video on the internet in which guitarist/fiddler/banjo player Frank Fairfield performs two songs in the studio at the KEXP radio station in Seattle. Everything around him—the microphone, the festive lighting, a wall clock straight off the shelf at Target—comes from modern times. And then there's Fairfield, a native Californian who appears to have been beamed in, 2Pac-hologram-style, from another era. From his bulky pre-war suit and sculpted black hair, to his mannerisms and song selection (including the traditional song "Nine Pound Hammer"), to the thin piece of twine—no really, twine—holding a grimy old banjo over his shoulder, Fairfield isn't a throwback, he's a time traveler. He's also a marvel, musically, whose nimble picking and sense of melody put him at the forefront of a class of old-time outsiders pushing their way in. BEN SALMON

Price: $13

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