Westminster man to sing at Baltimore Folk Festival

April 08, 1994|By Ellie Baublitz | Ellie Baublitz,Contributing Writer

The Baltimore Folk Society will bring the music, dancing, arts and crafts of area residents -- including a Westminster man -- to the stage tonight and tomorrow at the Bryn Mawr School, 109 W. Melrose Ave., in the eighth annual Baltimore Folk Festival.

Roger Himler, 47, a Carroll County native, will sing at the festival at 2:30 p.m. tomorrow. The vocalist-guitar player frequently sings at coffeehouses in the Carroll and Baltimore areas.

"It's a real nice event," said Mr. Himler, who has attended the festival in the past as a spectator. "I'm honored that they asked me to sing."

Mr. Himler became interested in folk music in the 1960s. He began playing the six- and 12-string guitar in high school.

"About three or four years ago, I started getting real involved with the music through the Carroll County Arts Council coffeehouse," he said. "Now I sing semiprofessionally around the Baltimore area -- sometimes I get paid and sometimes I don't."

He said he tries to get out at least once a month to sing at either the Carroll County Arts Council coffeehouse, the Folkal Point in Columbia or the Coffeehouse Uptown in Baltimore.

His repertoire includes works of such songwriters as John Prine, Loudon Wainwright III (author of "Dead Skunk"), and Carroll countians Walt Kuebler and John Kraus.

"I call myself an entertainer in the folk tradition," Mr. Himler said. "That's the flavor I do."

He tries to practice his singing "a little each day" so he's prepared for any performances. Besides the coffeehouses, Mr. Himler sings at places with an "open mike" format.

"I really enjoy it," he said. "I get to take the songs that mean a lot to me and perform them for the audience, and that feels good when they respond back."

Mr. Himler said that he will sing at the Carroll County Arts Council coffeehouse April 16 at the Frisco Pub.

The Baltimore Folk Festival opens with a concert at 8 p.m. today and continues tomorrow from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Besides folk singers performing songs from around the world, there will be international dancing, workshops, storytelling and jam sessions.

Local artists will display and sell handmade crafts, and international and local foods will be sold.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $3 for children today or tomorrow, and $18 for adults and $5 for children both days.

Information: (410) 889-7429.

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