Every year I say I’m going to see more bands than the year before but alas I only saw a few but I did catch a really important one. This band had me before but I have been thoroughly sucked in now. Ok I’ll get to that in a minute.
It seemed as if everyone arrived at once by the looks of the Armory/Stadium metro station. It was a sea of green and hoards of people hollering and cheering. Someone would yell “WHO’S ALREADY DRUNK?” Others would holler in unison “HELL YEAH! I’M EFFED UP!”
As we neared the stadium I noticed this redhead in front of me and I yelled “SCARLETT!” Wouldn’t ya know it, it was her. This was extremely lucky because she had arranged to interview Carbon Leaf. So after a few beers and the three o’clock hour hit she dragged me with her to interview them.
I’ve never done any interviews and had no idea what to say. I’m familiar with Carbon Leaf’s music and love the favorites like “The Boxer”. I’ve always thought of Carbon Leaf as such a famous band that last year I was pleasantly surprised to hear they would be playing Shamrockfest. I wondered how they could get such a big name like them to play in DC.
At the entrance to backstage we were met by Terry Clark. What an amazingly nice guy he is. They let us through and we were joined by Carter Gravatt, Jordan Medas and Barry Privett. We then walked out the back gate in search of someplace a little quieter to talk as Scarlett and I introduced ourselves. In any other situation this would seem kinda sketchy walking to the banks of the Anacostia River outnumbered by dudes. We found a decent spot and copped a squat in a circle. Well… it was more like an oval but I think you get the point.
Scarlett was ready and pulled out her notebook and started shooting off questions. I sat there with a goofy smile on my face and just amazed they took the time to chill with us like this. They are just regular guys with families. They talked about their most recent album, Love, Loss, Hope, Repeat, as well as future albums, hopefully two. They told us how their sound is moving away from their Celtic roots, which they are known for, in search of more.
I asked them what ties they have to DC that brings them to us for Shamrockfest. Terry told us their roots are Richmond, VA but coming to Shamrockfest started with Elliot from DC101 and Kegs and Eggs. Terry couldn’t say enough good things about Elliot and his crew.
These guys have a love of music and feed off the reactions of their crowds which is evident when they are on stage. When it was time for them to play I had gotten a spot fairly close and when the crowd would react I noticed this smile would come across Barry’s face. I felt like I was in on their secret.