LIVE: Jamcrackers @ Caffe Lena, 7/24/2020
As I understand it, ‘Jamcrackers‘ is an old Adirondack logging term for those, back in the day, who broke up the ‘jams’ that the tree logs, once harvested and then hoisted into the rivers, were sent down-stream for recovery at certain points along the way to be put on horse-driven carts, and later in history, onto trucks to be hauled off to the saw mills to cut and dry wood (for building) or pulp (for paper products).
However, the Adirondack ensemble, the Jamcrackers is a fantastic trio of purveyors of the legacy of the songs culled from mountain towns, communities, logging camps and all kinds of mines. And self-penned new songs that continue the culture and contemporary history of the Adirondack mountains and its people/communities and places. With Peggy Lynn’s lovely vocal stylings with guitar accompaniment, Dan Berggren’s baritone voice and poignant guitar work and Dan Duggan’s mastery over the acoustic guitar-both lead & rhythm- and hammered Dulcimer, an instrument that is unfortunately disappearing from the folk landscape, the Jamcrackers present a wonderful mix of both the old (handed-down tunes from museums, estate sales and, what can only be labeled archaeological discoveries) and new songs, written individually by the trio members who are ‘professors’ in musicology as far as the Adirondacks are concerned. The trio has family ties to the New York mountains and a collective love for its folklore. It doesn’t get any better than that as far as creating portholes into the past and recent present of their beloved mountains.
That night the Jamcrackers journeyed back in time, traveling to the present day, with words and music that beautifully captured the stories and tales of the Adirondacks with three-part harmonies and authentic music. If you love the Adirondacks, check them out on recordings or the Live Stream, if it’s accessible. See CaffeLena.org for this and future concerts availability.