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The Carolina Chocolate Drops

Thursday, March 11, 2010

From Ryan Alons, the SAO student worker:

A professor of mine actually stopped class and started talking about the Chocolate Drops yesterday. It was like “Before I talk about Documentary Film today, I’d like to know who went to the Carolina Chocolate Drops?” I raised my hand eagerly. I was the only one out of about twenty students, which I have to admit was a little awkward.

He was then like, “What a great show, right?!” and I was all like, “Totes!”

In the middle of class we started to talk about their dynamic performances. Dom Flemons spun the guitar around and flipped under his leg and then played it behind his back. Rhiannon Giddens loved to give impromptu jigs at the side of the stage. Justin Robinson played everything from the Jug to the Auto-harp!

Not only were they steeped in the Appalachian music tradition, but also they were living the tradition. After the show the band talked about how musicians used to travel from town to town and learn songs to bring home. They were not just covering “Hit ‘Em Up Style,” they were bringing that song home.

So we talked about this as the class started to doodle in the margins of their notes. Finally he said “Calvin students are so lucky to be able to see such amazing artist for five dollars.”

Well, if Calvin students are so lucky, then where were they Tuesday night? The show was sold out and 90% of the audience was non-student npr listeners. Now we love all those folks off campus but we love Calvin college students too!

We’re doing this all for you, students!

Who else enjoyed the show Tuesday night?