Same time next year?
That was the question at the end of the 16th annual Stodola Michala Tučného, early in the morning around 2 a.m.
While I can’t remember his name, I recognized the gentleman from last year by his broad smile, warm heart and his leather fringe vest with a Sheriff’s pin on it.
This year I had the pleasure of not only making my performance debut at the festival, but also really relaxing and enjoying the entire festival.
I was fortunate enough to perform early in the program. In the morning program, I performed at the end of St. Johnny’s set “Please Don’t Make Me Late” and the title track to “The Blues Keeps You Alive” before singing “Hound Dog” as an encore. Near the beginning of the evening program, I sang with the “house band” Blueground all three of my Michal Tučný songs together “Tennessee Lullaby”, “You Win Again” and “Až přijde ten den”.
With my performances done I was able to savor the whole festival experience:
- Mandrage’s great show of pageantry and dynamic anthems
- Ivan Hlas’s simple, peaceful voice after the raw power of Mandrage
- Lying on the grass in the warm summer sunshine while listening to Spirituál Kvintet* to enjoy Veronika Součkovás gentle, clear, voice singing an Irish ballad a cappella and the group in perfect harmony performing an American children’s folk song to the quintet
- Warm, nostalgic feeling of hearing an audience singing “Kumbaya” in 2013 in Czech
- The way the crowd adored the antics of Ivan Mládek & Banjo Band and sang and danced to the silly songs they knew and loved from childhood
- How František Nedvěd sang “Tam u nebeských bran” with such heartfelt tenderness that the die-hard fans backstage in matching Michal Tučný t-shirts just gently swayed together in appreciative awe
- František Segrádo waiting at the stairs with a shot for me as I came off stage from singing “Až přijde ten den”. Slivovice never felt or tasted so good! Later over drinks, František shared with me the story of how Michal Tučný swore it was impossible to sing in Czech until a famous actress taught him how to phrase his singing properly, setting him on the path to become the King of Czech Country Music. František was so excited about having chosen to sing the oldest of Michal Tučný’s recordings, because he felt they best represented Tučný’s sincere style and sincerely František sang those songs with style.
- Beautifully moving experience of ending the evening in an embrace on stage with all the performers and die-hard fans as we sang together such beloved songs like “Baječná ženská” and “Tam u nebeských bran”.
From an exciting day packed with so many touching memories, these are but a few that I can share with you ;-)
What were your favorite moments from the 16th annual Stodola Michala Tučného?
All pictures are courtesy of Stodola Michala Tučného.