With large gatherings off the table for the foreseeable future due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many artists have had to get creative with ways to stay in touch with fans during quarantine. Ketch Secor of the two-time Grammy-winning band Old Crow Medicine Show is no different.
Shortly after the lockdown began in Nashville, Secor launched the Hartland Hootenanny, a live, weekly variety show featuring a combination of music, storytelling, news, a socially distanced square dance, humor and a special guest star each week via Skype. Previous episodes have featured guests such as Molly Tuttle, Charlie Worsham and Joshua Hedley. Each episode concludes with Secor performing what he calls the “Tall Tale,” a recitation encompassing a weekly theme.
Although the current circumstances are not ideal, Secor says he’s enjoying his newfound creative outlet.
“Covid-19 has caused such uncertainty for our band, for our business, for all musicians everywhere. But what hasn’t suffered at all is Old Crow’s drive as performers to engage our audience, and to exercise some of that deep-down creative muscle of a 20+ year band. The Hootenanny was born out of our innate sense of creating community, especially in times when community is at its hardest to come by,” Secor tells Country Now. The concept is simple, a self-isolation quarantine show, but the results are almost as entertaining as if we were coming to you live and in person. Using song, storytelling, vaudeville-esque humor, and silliness and spontaneity from deep in our band’s buskers spirit, we’ve tried to build a livestream show that reminds everybody why we use ‘Medicine Show’ as part of our name.”
Filmed at Hartland, Old Crow Medicine Show’s newly acquired studio in East Nashville, the Hartland Hootenanny airs every Saturday at 8/7c live from the band’s YouTube and Facebook. This week’s episode is set to feature Americana duo The War and Treaty.