Southern Illinois Steel Guitar Show 2015

… three days in a relaxed atmosphere.

My third visit to this show, and my wife's first. We were there to listen to music and relax, and that is exactly how we spent those three days.

The bar was an alright place to enjoy a good meal, and, although they did not have my favorite brand of whiskey, I had one – Canadian.

good entertainment…

Leona Williams and Ron Williams put on a good show at the end. Worth the visit all by itself.

Of course, let us not forget that there were many others on stage during the show. Most of them did a fairly good job of enter­taining us too.

There were some superb players on stage during the event, both in front on steel, and in the band backing them. They rarely ever missed a beat.

I made short notes while in the ballrom, so I know who played when I was there. I am not gonna put those pieces of info and name of players here though, just spread around some of the pictures I took.

The official program is copied into this page below.

Surprise-artists show up at such shows, like the young woman in the picture above.
I have forgotten her name and relations to what country-artist, but she had an excellent voice.

varying styles…

As steel players of varying age, degree and type of experience entered the stage, we got to hear quite some variations in style. Makes such shows interesting.

If I remem­ber correctly, the youngest steel player was 13 years old, and the oldest was around 80. This spread in age was of course reflected in proficience in playing the steel.
Although players are not competing against each others at such shows, the quality of their playing does come through to the audience – and it matters. The youngest player held his own.

good performances…

Being there, and listen­ing to and watch­ing all the per­form­ers, was – as expected – an experience I would have regretted being without.

I have seen and heard most of the per­form­ers before at various shows. But, as they say: there can hardly be too much of a good thing.

Then there is of course the chance to say hello to and/or shake hands with friends and complete strangers.
You never really know who you may run into at such events, and that in itself can become quite inter­est­ing.

Southern Illinois Productions efforts benefit Shriners Children's Hospitals

In the evening of the last day, all involved in the Southern Illinois Productions was gathered at the stage, and a check was presented to Shriners Children's Hospitals.

… she was here…

It is now fairly well docu­ment­ed that Gunlaug Solås was present at the 15th Annual Southern Illinois Steel Guitar Show.
No photo­graphic evidence for Georg Sørtun's presence, but we must assume that he was there too – somewhere.

Gunlaug was rewarded with a T-shirt at the show, as a sign that she was the one who had traveled the furthest to get there. Indeed, Mt.Vernon, IL, USA is “quite a drive” from Mandal, VA, Norway.
To have mentioned it: I was rewarded with a T-shirt for the same reason in 2013, but then I was there on my own – Gunlaug could not come with me.

We had this plan of ours, that we should spend three days and two nights at the Holiday Inn – while the show lasted. After that we should drive further north, in search of one of Gunlaug's distant relatives who lives in the Chicago area.
The plan worked out fine: lots of music in Mt.Vernon on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and a nice family reunion on Sunday afternoon. Who can ask for more.

sincerely  georg; sign

Weeki Wachee 09.may.2015
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