What’s up with modern folk music?
It seems that something happened to folk music at some point where it became a) specifically “grad school”-ish, with a sort of affluent “NPR sensibility” b) kind of silly and novelty-obsessed, and c) incredibly slick and nonthreatening.
A lot of this seems to be centered around the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, where the Joni clones (Dar Williams, Richard Shindell, Erin McKeown, etc.) and the novelty boppers (the Nields, Girlyman, Moxy Fruvous, Eddie from Ohio, etc.) come together to fellate each other for a few days.
What’s going on? How did we get from Woodie Guthrie to a band called the Gourds doing a novelty cover of “Gin and Juice” to an audience of politely tittering grad students?