Joe Pug

Millicent Fenwick’s first cousin was John Henry Hammond, a legendary music producer and talent scout long before Simon Cowell and American Idol. Among Hammond’s many discoveries were Billie Holiday, Count Basie, Benny Goodman (who married John’s sister Alice), Bob Dylan, and Bruce Springsteen.  Hammond was also a key player behind the Newport Jazz Festival which started in 1954. Five years later the Newport Folk Festival was started and both continue to this day. It was at the Newport Folk Festival that I first heard Joe Pug, a young singer/songwriter, strum his guitar and play the harmonica. Last night he played at the Black Cat to a sold out hometown crowd of mostly twenty-somethings (like him).  The opening act, Strand of Oaks, was a guy named Tim who has been in the business for decades. Just how long was clear when he sang a song about “wanting to kill John Belushi’s drug dealer.” The girl in front of me asked her boyfriend, “Who is John Belushi?” Fortunately, he knew.

2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Steve on April 14, 2011 at 11:57 pm

    Dude – you meant John Belushi. Jim (John’s brother) is still alive.

    That’s cool you were at the Black Cat.


  2. Ooops, you’re right. Thank goodness for the edit button (and readers)!


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