By Kat Strem
There’s a new phenomenon hitting the vacant lots of Fitchburg called “folking”: informal concerts that are organized via Facebook.
It starts with an email sent out via Facebook giving the location and time. Anyone who’s interested is told to bring as many friends as they can.
“It’s kind of like a spur-of-the-moment open-mic night,” says Evan DeLuca, a senior at Fitchburg State University. “People bring their guitars, drums, harmonicas, accordions – anything they can play without plugging it in. Some people show up and get the crowd singing with no music at all.”
Chris Lawless, an FSU graduate with a talent for music, is the mastermind behind the folkings. “We aren’t revolutionaries, but we are the revolution,” he says. “I wanted to do something low maintenance that people wouldn’t feel intimidated about playing at or showing up to.”
The first folking occurred in the Civic Center parking lot in December 2010. Twenty-five people crowded around a minivan covered in Christmas lights, braving freezing weather to see the show. “It was worth it,” says Mike Cook, a senior at FSU.
Since then, two more folkings have occurred in the Fitchburg area and a fourth is scheduled at the Civic Center at 8 p.m.
this Saturday, Oct. 1.
“Just look for the van with the Christmas lights,” says Lawless.