Music in the Bleak Midwinter.

Note;  This appeared in the Feb 2nd Swarthmorean

To see the photo, go to

Thanks to the Swarthmorean for printing this.


Music in the Bleak Midwinter

By Bob Small

Yes, there is live music in Swarthmore, even in the bleak midwinter. On January 21, there were four duos performing as part of the Last Chance CD Release Party at Swarthmore’s waR3house3 at 100 Park Avenue, in the Alleyway between Park and Rutgers.

This was a standing room only crowd, partially due to the four groups, partially to admission only being a tenspot (in advance), partially due to free food and the loose byob atmosphere.

Ingrid Rosenback and Jack Scott of Last Chance in performance at waR3house3. Photo by Carolyn Miller

The group Last Chance Duo is Ingrid Rosenback of Swarthmore on fiddle and harmonica, and Jack Scott of Wallingford on banjo and guitar. Jack writes the songs which both sing. This second CD, Endless Flight, is available through the duo.

The party was also a benefit for One Step Away, a Philly Street newspaper sold by street vendors. By selling these newspapers and keeping the proceeds, these homeless individuals are able to gain a degree of self-reliance. Communications director Alexis Wright-Whitley gave a brief speech about the One Step Away group. Copies of the newspaper were included with the CDs, both of which were included in the price of admission. When planning the event, Ingrid and Jack invited three other duos whom they had met at The Philadelphia Folk Festival.

Though we have heard Last Chance many times at various venues (are we “Last Chance heads?”), we never tire of hearing their songs. Maybe it’s because each concert is different.

The Michael Spear Duo consists of Michael Spear, guitars and songs, plus multi-instrumentalist Smiling Ed. They have a CD release planned later this year, which hopefully will include “Already Dead” from this concert.

Rusty and Jan consists of Rusty Crowell on guitar and vocals and Jan Alba on flute, saxophone and vocals. This husband and wife duo describes their music as “acoustic familiarity with a classic woodwind twist”. They did the best cover of Van Morrison’s “Moondance” we’ve ever heard.

Probably many of you know Square Wheels from their many performances at Media Coffeehouses, the Peace Center, etc. They consist of Mac Given, clarinet and harmonica, and Wayne G. Harvey, sharing singing duties. You can taste some of their music at their myspace site.

Other groups are at:,, and

About bobsmall1

Bob Small has read at Bacchanal, Barnes and Noble, Borders, The Booksource (Swarthmore), The Clark Park Festivals,Community College of Philadelphia Highwire Gallery, The Mad Poets Annual Food Fest Reading, The Middle East Restaurant, Nexus GalleryThe Painted Bride Arts Center, The Philadelphia Ethical Society, Robin's Bookstore The University of Pennsylvania and also in New York City, Trenton, NJ, Washington, DC, and in many Delaware Valley Venues. He is the author of numerous chapbooks, including El Otro Lado (with Maralyn Lois Polak), On watching America Die, Small Steps and Toes (with Lamont B. Steptoe), and The Unapoet. This is his first Reading in over a year. Bob Small was Founder and President of the two decades old Poets and Prophets, which presented Poetry Readings in both Delaware County and Philadelphia. Bob was the Chair of The Delaware County Green Party and was the First Green Party Candidate in Delaware County (2005). He was also a Green Party National Delegate, among other duties. He is the Founder and Facilitator of The Pennsylvania Ballot Access Coalition (PaBac), which is a Coalition of both Independents and Third Parties., seeking to legislatively improve Pennsylvania's Ballot Access Laws. (Facebook) Bob is also a founding member and Facilitator of Democracy Unplugged, and Delco Debates, which has presented Independent and Third Party Forums in Delaware County since 2004. Facebook) He was formerly involved with Cinema Resistance, and Delco Pledge of Resistance. Bob currently lives in Swarthmore with his wife and their menagerie of animals. He is currently focused on writing a Novel and organizing his Poetry, which he posts on his Blog (Bob Small1). He is retired from most of the above activities, except Delco Debates and Poets and Prophets, which he may return to.
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