John Nemeth

Thu Apr 5 19:06:47 EDT 2007

> I'm certain that this was just a tongue-in-the-cheek remark, but I'm not 
> sure that I would call Boise exactly rural. Though not an extremely large 
> city it still has over 200,000 people and a metro population nearing 
> 500,000 +. There's actually at least one dedicated blues bar in the city 
> (Blues Bouquet), an active blues society and some fairly decent players in 
> the area. John was making the rounds throughout the NW before moving to 
> California, playing places like Spokane, Seattle and Portland regularly.
> Greg
Hmmpf.  Northern Idaho is about the same as going from central Oregon to 
Portland.  I live on the west plains just west of Spokane.  I can drive 50 
miles due east and be in the heart of the city of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, and 
not once see any farm land.  It's damn near all city the whole distance.  I 
believe I read once there's some 2 1/2 million people in the area, spread 
out all over.  In my opinion, there are few places as physically beautiful 
as the northern Idaho Panhandle.  And not one tater farm around, but plenty 
of lakes and ski resorts.  That said, what truly mars the landscape is the 
wealth of retired LA cops (ever wonder where Mark Furman landed?), right 
wing neo-nazi fanatics, and your plain, every-day narrow minded biggoted red 
necks.  On the hand, there are a few movie stars (Patty Duke for one), a 
host of retired ball players (Don Larson and Maury Wills come to mind...oh, 
and Mark Repien, too) and some wonderful concerts are put on in Sandpoint. 
They have a music fest there every summer, though not blues, but they have 
had the Blind Boys of Alabama there several times and I know Mavis Staples 
has played there recently as well.  And in Sandpoint they will tell you you 
can go skiing all year the summer on the lake (Pend Oreille)  and 
in the winter just outside town is the Switzer Ski Resort.

Real blues clubs are non-existant these days.  There are a few places that 
will book a blues band now and then...


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