Singer/songwriter/fiddler/guitarist Jake Armerding put on a terrific show at West Grove Friends Meeting on Saturday evening as part of the Hadley Fund series. I hadn't heard of him and didn't get a chance to check out any YouTube videos ahead of time, so the fact that he was both talented and adorable came as a wonderful surprise.
His songs included from a soulful "Ashokan Farewell," a funny song about how Midwesterners (he lives in Minnesota) insist on being nice no matter how they're actually feeling, "Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes" from Paul Simon's "Graceland," a bluegrass song with the words slightly altered to apply to his little boy, and a sweet love song called "Favorite Person" that had me sentimentally squeezing my date's hand.
Jake mentioned several times during the show how much he loves the acoustics at West Grove Meeting (Alyce Denver, the clerk of the Meeting, told me later that he has actually done some recordings there). At the end of the evening he thanked Hadley Fund program coordinator Sheila Tekavec for organizing the show and Joe Young for doing the sound. "You have two gems there," he said to the audience.
It was great to see so many folks at the show, including some youngsters, and people were raving about it the next day on social media.