Journal of the San Juan Islands


Acoustic folk ‘afire’: Ungar & Mason

April 1, 2013 · Updated 10:26 AM

Acoustic folk musicians Jay Unger and Molly Mason perform, Saturday, at San Juan Community Theatre. The duo will help lead a free musical workshop prior to the performance, on the day of the show. / Contributed photo

The theme song from Ken Burns’ Civil War documentary, the one made so unmistakeable by the bittersweet sound of that haunting violin, is perhaps Jay Ungar’s most well known composition. It’s called “Ashokan Farewell”.

But it’s only one of many original tunes Ungar has penned over the course of a celebrated career devoted to acoustic Americana.

Ungar and guitarist, and pianist extraordinaire Molly Mason, the duo married in 1991 and have been performing together ever since, will light up Friday Harbor with timeless renditions of hard-driving Applalachain melodies, and Cajun and Celtic fiddle tunes, at an evening performance, Saturday, at San Juan Community Theatre, 7:30 p.m.

Expect the evening playlist to included sassy songs from the golden age of swing and country, and waltzes and orginals as well.

The duo will be joined by master fiddler James Mason of the Gypsy Jazz band "Swing Papillon" for its performances in both Eastsound and Friday Harbor.

But that’s not all.

On the day of the show, the duo will join local historian Mike Vouri and Friday Harbor’s own folk fiddle master, Mike Cohen, to offer a free pre-concert musical workshop, entitled “History Sings: An Exploration of 19th Century Folk Music", beginning at 2 p.m., at SJCT.

Tickets for the evening performance: $24 adults, $12 student reserved, $5 Rush; online or at the box office.


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