In the roots music community on the East Coast, there is one organization that really stands alone as a beacon for enthusiasts of all ages, of all backgrounds, and specifically in ensuring there is room at the table for a diversity of thoughts and representations. The Philadelphia Folksong Society is over 60 years old and has been the home of the Philadelphia Folk Festival, often drawing over 30,000 people to celebrate the Roots Music Community.
For the past five years, Justin Nordell has been the (youngest) acting director of the organization. Tonight we talk about the weight of that responsibility, and the way Justin and the organization quickly developed a monetizable system to keep artists performing and getting paid while keeping their active community actively involved. We also talk about celebrating pride month in the middle of both the COVID-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter protests.
Philadelphia Folksong Society: http://pfs.org
Philadelphia Folk Festival: https://folkfest.org/