The 2017 Music by the River concert series continues Saturday, May 20, with WildFlower Honey. The family-friendly performance will be staged from 6 to 8 p.m. in the waterfront picnic area at Belle Isle State Park, 1632 Belle Isle Road, Lancaster.
WildFlower Honey knows there is something magical about the right notes strung together and carried through the vibration of instrument strings, woven together with inspired lyrics, reported upright bass player Allyson Childress.
By embracing the process of songwriting, this bluegrass/Americana inspired band finds creative expression in original songs like “The Ripper,” “Kerosene” and “Boy With a Light.” Not quick to forget the past, WildFlower Honey has hints of classic rock ´n roll from the last several decades, making their originals feel like old friends.
Collectively, the band has over 50 years of musical experience, which is impressive when you consider their oldest member is a young 30-something. Lead vocalist Claiborne Dingledine describes songwriting as a way to process the past.
“I use songwriting to express my experiences, in a way that I hope other people can relate to. That sensation of shared experiences or feelings reminds us that we are all connected somehow,” said Dingledine, who also plays banjo and harmonica.
Guitar player Ryan Faulkner agrees. “For me, music is the greatest form of celebration, exploration and human connection we have,” he said.
For Childress, songwriting is not exclusively about processing one’s own experience of the past. “We have all heard artists talk about the ‘strike of inspiration’ but I think there is something more intuitive and sacred going on. Sometimes the story of a song is totally removed from your own set of experiences and you have to wonder if you aren’t processing something or someone else’s experience of the world,” she said.
The band’s second guitar and occasional mandolin player, Landon Clark, feels music is a way to build something beautiful.
“Being able to collaborate on something with your friends, people you love, is a gift. Not everyone gets to do that. It becomes bigger than yourself. Bigger than everyone involved and there is a moment when you are all together up there playing and nothing else matters in the world. You are literally in a moment and that is a beautiful thing,” said Clark.
Picnics are welcome and there will be supervised activities for the children. A limited number of picnic tables will be available. Bring lawn chairs or blankets.
The show is free; however, there is a $4 parking fee payable at the park entrance. There will be free popcorn. Cold soft drinks and bottled water will be available for a minimal price.
Season sponsors include Bay FM 101.7; Chesapeake Bank; Commonwealth Senior Living of Farnham and Kilmarnock; Dehnert, Clarke & Co. PC; Eugene Duffer Foundation; EVB; Friends of Belle Isle State Park; MetroCast Communications; Rappahannock Record; River Country 107.5; Tri-Star Supermarket; Wealth Planning Solutions, Robert E. Walker; WIGO Country, WNND 103.9 and WRAR 105.5.