Road to Rich’s 2016 was a feast.
A year ago, when my friend Don and I pulled out of Rich Martin’s Zuni mountain valley driveway, and began the sleep-haggered drive back to Albuquerque, I knew. We’d spent the last three days drinking*, dancing, eating, and trading stories with a few hundred other music-lovers. (Note nothing in there about sleeping.) It was our first TieDye Party, our first Road to Rich’s, and we both felt instantly that it was a tradition. That’s what we each said, in Don’s rickety pickup, as I massaged my just-reinjured shoulder: “Can’t believe I’m already waiting for next year.”
And Road to Rich’s 2016 was worth the wait.
I’m not talking about the weather (which as fabulous). I’m not even specifically talking about the still more amazing bands who knocked it out out of the park, hour after hour. I mean all the little, hard to anticipate things. Like Rich parading around the woods in his new-to-him golf cart. That everyone was ready for greatness. Like the impressive number of folks wearing Saltine Ramblers t-shirts.
Like that this past Saturday night was a full moon, so Poor Man’s Whiskey, one of the headlining bands, decided to play Dark Side of the Moon, in its entirety.
Like that Poor Man’s Whiskey then replaced every instance of “money” with “whiskey.” And then replaced the cash-register sound in “Money” with beer cans cracked in-time on stage, which they then handed to the audience.
Or that when Jams of Enchantment, who contribute huge quantities of time, money, and love to this micro-festival, ran out of propane in the middle of their free-for-all pancake breakfast, they got a new canister in under a minute. (Not to mention following up last year’s margarita bowl with an equally epic Bloody Mary batch.)
So here it is, folks, my highlights reel from Road to Rich’s 2016. I’ve included more images here than usual, because I want to give you my best representation of the three days I shot.
*That was Don, mostly.
Musicians who played this weekend:
- Meredith Wilder and Sage Harrington
- Dave Payne
- Marty Crandall
- Mt. Thelonious
- Brian White and Rob Dutton
- Bill Hearne Trio
- Poor Man’s Whiskey
- Liver Down the River