Tag Archives: Doug Bischoff

Music Hath Charms – –

Jack’s Wednesday guest blog post –

We just had a weekend away and enjoyed a great time with musical friends in Williamsburg VA. We went to join the farewell party for Mick and Neva Mikula who are headed permanently to Florida. Mick is an ex-member of a great Celtic rock band called Coyote Run who split up a couple of years ago and the company was composed of other ex-members and associates of the band.

At the last minute I discovered that there was to be a wedding on Sunday and I was invited to contribute to the musical accompaniment. To my astonishment I encountered a fine fiddle player who launched into Niel Gow’s ‘Farewell to Whisky’, which confirmed for me that behind the kilts and leather gear favored by ‘Coyote Run’ lay an unusually deep (for that particular musical scene) appreciation and understanding of real traditional Celtic music.

We first encountered the Coyotes a number of years ago at the Sycamore Shoals festival in Elizabethton TN, where Wendy and I had started to MC the main stage. We found that we shared a mutual quirky sense of humor and over the succeeding years our paths continued to cross. In their final year we were able to book them as headliners at Big Stone Celtic. I was always impressed by their combination of musicianship, stagecraft, visual effects and sheer exuberance. By comparison with the other regular and much shallower bands on the circuit they clearly had listened to the ‘right stuff’ and that was reflected in their repertoire.


Over the weekend, in conversation with the fiddle player (Paul Anderson) and Mick and the others I was astonished to find how much overlap there was in the singers and musicians we all admired.

However, there was another amusing occurrence before we headed home. Wendy went on a shopping spree with the others as I recuperated from a very late night and found a bookstore – Mermaid Books. She happened to be wearing one of our bookstore tee-shirts and the owner asked her if she’d ever visited Tales of the Lonesome Pine. She said that she had. He said that there was a great book about it that he really enjoyed, to which Wendy said “I’m the author”. Cue much hilarity and exchanging of bookstore stories!

A final big thank you to our hosts, who I suspect didn’t originally intend to have so many house-guests just as they were about to box up their possessions ahead of their departure. They treated us and the other ‘lodgers’ like royalty and we were fed delectable Indian and Middle-Eastern delicacies, not to mention haggis for breakfast.

it’s a hard life over here – – –

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Filed under between books, Big Stone Gap, folklore and ethnography, Life reflections, Little Bookstore of Big Stone Gap, Scotland, Uncategorized


pipe band

It was a lovely time. Behold the happy events that made up Big Stone Celtic, from the pipers above who fronted the parade to the little helmeted kids on bikes who formed the rear guard.

lady big stoneLady Big Stone Barbara Polly, and her escort, musician Doug Bischoff.

french club - Copy flags - Copy dar - Copy little bike kids

A day of music and merriment, from the Fox House acoustic stage, through the Celtic Kitchen, the mining museum, and the Sacred Stage, to the mainstage music at the downtown theatre. ron and beth joseph - Copy irish skye - Copy high school - Copy choir - Copy

And of course the glories of the evening dance!

dance finish - Copy dance - Copy

To see video of people dancing, and visit the rest of Big Stone Celtic Day’s photos, head over to the facebook page linked below.


The newly-added children’s events – a bike safety course, Highland games light, and a few other fun bits – brought smiles all ’round.

redhead baby kids bikes - Copy caber toss 2 - Copy caber toss - Copy bouncy castle - Copy

And let’s not forget the lovely, elegant, lively, vibrant Friday night concert.

jack and me - Copy iona - Copy

Or that Bob Dylan, our foster cat, went home with the base player from Iona (on the left in the blue shirt). We’ve had an email saying he likes his new digs very much, and plans to work with the band on the acoustic-to-electric thing in the near future. Iona 2boby dylan - Copy


Filed under animal rescue, Big Stone Gap, folklore and ethnography, humor, Scotland, Uncategorized, VA