Three Chords and the Truth

by Ronnie Narmour October  28, 2009

Its been an eventful two weeks here on the music scene around the Coastal Bend. As always, there's lots to tell you about. Let's roll...

Jesse Cahn (Oklahoma City, OK) played the Tarpon Ice House (Port Aransas) last Friday night and again Saturday evening at the Rialto Theater (Aransas Pass). Jesse is a California native who now resides in Oklahoma. He is the son of folk guru, Rolf Cahn, a mainstay of the Berkley and Cambridge folk movement in the 60's. The elder Cahn, a contemporary of Eric Von Schmidt, Dave Van Ronk and Odetta, periodically held guitar workshops which were attended by the young Bob Dylan and Joan Baez

I went to both of these shows in the greater Port A/Aransas Pass (Aransaplex) area. Local folk/blues maestro, Stuart Burns, accompanied Cahn at the Port A show but not at the Rialto. The show at the Tarpon got taken over by some very aggressive kids with harmonicas and bongos, and I didn't stay long. I did thoroughly enjoy the performance at the Rialto, though. 

Cahn played a couple of sets of old time country blues with some songs by Blind Lemon Jefferson, Sleepy John Estes and Mance Lipscomb, etc in the acoustic finger picking styles of the 20's and 30's. Cahn's finger picking technique is clean and authentic. This show was both a guitar lesson and a history lesson. Cahn is a music historian on the era and genre of music and had interesting anecdotes to add throughout the show. He told some old stories about his family and growing up with real-deal American "folkies" in San Francisco in the 50's and 60's. I absolutely thought Jesse Cahn was great.

…And that's the truth.

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