Dear friends of Martha's Vineyard,
In a rented house on South Road in what was once "Gay Head," I borrowed my sister's guitar. I began to strum and play the necessary chords that would last me well into the next decade. Lucy (my sister) and I sang together as we listened and learned from the players and singers who were our neighbors and friends at the Chilmark Community Center.
"Who was that guy with the twinkle in his eye? Did he play a keyboard or was it a banjo in his hands?" This is something that would make a big difference as months and years went by. "Who is that on conga? I wonder how to get hold of that boy playing the guitar on the steps at Alleys? What's his last name?"
There were a few years in the early sixties of singing on Circuit Ave. at the Mooncusser. My sister and I floated around in matching skirts and white peasant blouses. We spent as much time tuning the pegs on our guitars as we did playing them. (Time has come for this to be remedied, I do declare!!
By the time the picture on the banner at the top of this page was taken in 1986, I had had a lot of luck in the land of the record business and I was taping an HBO special from Lobsterville Beach, looking off in the direction of Menemsha. The kid's choir came out on the stage as the sun was going down to join me singing "Itsy Bitsy Spider."
It was surreal.
As the years have sped on by, I still know and love every one of these singers. Most of them are on this registry! I want to say such a huge thank you to all of you who have signed on or who will sign on. The Vineyard has always been for me, such a haven for the birth of music, a home for music and musicians. I hope this Vineyard Musicall registry will facilitate its continual growth and spurs on the meetings that take place on street corners and porches and community centers and cafes. "Hey, can you teach me that chord you played after the F major on the chorus of "Michael Row The Boat Ashore?"
Love from, Carly Simon
*This site is intended for year round Vineyard musicians.