Mustang Music Festival—Great Music for a Great Cause
By Kip Tabb –
Master showman, outrageous entertainer but mostly an amazing musician, David Mayfield brought the David Mayfield Parade to the Spring Mustang Music Festival—and, oh what a show it was.
Trying to capture the essence of the Parade’s performance is like trying to understand quantum physics with a high school education—you know the information is there, it’s just that nothing seems to make sense.
Imagine bluegrass music on steroids, backed up by heavy metal drum with a lead performer who refuses to take himself too seriously . . . until he begins to play. But when he does play, there is a mind-numbing virtuosity that is stunning and beautiful.
A great show, great showmanship and the capper to an amazing day of music.
I got to the festival a little late this year so I missed the Flip Flop Five, Andy Begina and Mercy Creek—which is a shame because I like all three of them, both the way they present themselves and their music. Mercy Creek, in particular is a personal favorite. Every time I see them, I’m amazed at how full and rich their sound is—impressive for a duet.
I did get there in time to see Zack Mexico—a local group who keep getting better and better. Their sound seems to be moving toward jazz with a strong underpinning of heavy metal. A good strong core of bass line and percussion with excellent lead guitar work—everything points to a band that may be ready to break out of the mold.
Brand New life Band is from Greensboro and there’s a pretty good sense of what is coming when they set up with two congas and a drummer. That’s a lot of percussion for a seven piece band.
Then they begin to play and it all makes sense. Sean Smith on trumpet and Walter Fancourt on tenor sax have this amazing ability to create what is almost a theme and variations between the two of them. Smith will start off playing a lead on trumpet and Fancourt will answer him, and then that will be reversed.
It’s pure jazz with a modified African beat (don’t know how else to describe it.). The music is challenging, the musicians excellent and it makes for great entertainment.
Then the Dave Mayfield Parade takes the stage. Hard to imagine anyone upstaging the talent Mike Dianna was able to gather for the festival—but somehow, that group managed to do it. It wasn’t a conscious effort to better anyone—it’s just that they’re that good.
What is perhaps most remarkable is, as good as Mayfield is, his touring band is equal to what he is doing. Mayfield is clearly the comedian and showman, but each one of the musicians shines in their own right.
Jennifer Starsinic on fiddle, in particular, really stood out for me. Talented, versatile, very clean leads—and something I noticed was that whenever she was taking a solo, she just seemed to be filled with the joy of music—a huge smile, the way she held herself seemed to say, “I’m having a great time.”
That’s what the whole day was about—having a great time. Mike Dianna’s Mustang Music Festivals help fund a great cause, the Corolla Wild Horse Fund, but just as importantly, it creates a great day of music, community and family.