WELLFLEET – Twenty porches, 40 musicians and bands, hundreds of spectators. That was Wellfleet Porchfest 2019. This event, the 5th annual, gets better every year, and more popular. Parking was at capacity, as were this quaint seaside town’s narrow sidewalks.
Nonetheless, there were, as always, musical moments of bliss on porches of businesses and private homes throughout the town. One needed only to walk a few steps and listen to head for the next band and the one after that.
High points in the afternoon set included Stephanie Forryan & Axel Kowollik performing originals; the Ruffled Hens, performing folk, Celtic and world music–in this case, “Puttin’ on the Ritz”; Lisa and Lori Brigantino with “Blue Bayou”; the always bewitching vocal stylings of Black Whydah Trio with original and traditional folk music; Cumberland with old-style Appalachia and bluegrass; Tim Sweeney singing folk; Atlantic Rhythm Pigs playing powerful percussion; and Blue Dog taking the jazz route.
A favorite performer was Jake Bautista rising above his difficult venue, A Nice Cream Shop, where all ages were indulging in dripping cones laden with ice cream. Not easy to get the crowd’s attention, but Bautista reached into the vault to perform some stirring bluesy numbers.
Ending the video, Anne Stott of Provincetown performs her own verse of the protest song “Take Down Your Flag” by Peter Mulvey in response to the Charlestown shootings in 2016 and the South Carolina legislature’s decision not to lower the Confederate flag after the shootings.
After the song, she thanks the crowd for supporting live music in Wellfleet, and the applause traveled down Bank Street to the harbor.
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