Radio WNYC describes Walter Parks, soloist, this way: “A listen to Parks’ soulful Americana rock is to be immersed in warm guitar melodies, smoky vocals and troubadour narratives that gather strength with age.”   Aahhhhhhh.


[photo: Jagoda, Walter Parks and Jim Devito]

[photo: Sue & text: Jeff Stein]

This past Sunday night was Walter Parks’ fifth appearance at Arcosanti, the first ever with Swamp Cabbage, the band he formed in 2001 to explore his Southern musical roots.

[photo: Scamp Cabbage at practice in the afternoon]

[photo: Sue & text: Jeff Stein]

After a cookout in the vaults, and in perfect weather, a crowd composed of Arcosantians and many Walter Parks fans from around central Arizona gathered in the Colly Soleri Music Theatre to hear Jacksonville, Florida native, Walter on guitars and vocals; the totally calm and efficient Brooklynite, Jagoda on drums; and from somewhere in between, longtime producer and extraordinary guitarist Jim Devito on bass.


[photo: Sue & text: Jeff Stein]

Walter Parks solo is one thing; Walter with Swamp Cabbage is more like this:

“Here is your recipe for making Swamp Cabbage: Get out a big mixing bowl and put in equal parts of ZZ Top, John Campbell, Tom Waits, Leon Redbone, Canned Heat, Otis Taylor and John Lee Hooker. Then add a little water moccasin venom, the heart of an alligator and some miscellaneous toad fluids. Leave this mixture out in the wild of the north Florida swamps for about 10 years with the lid slightly ajar and, you know… see what happens.”  Whoah!

[photo: Sue & text: Jeff Stein]

What happened at Arcosanti was a truly electric set, and not just because the instruments were plugged-in. From the very first notes, it was hard for most of the audience to sit still, and by the concert’s end a conga-line of a quarter of the crowd had made its way onstage to dance. All in all, a fantastic evening at Arcosanti on the high desert.

Catch Swamp Cabbage as they headline the Ogden, Utah, Music Festival this coming Friday night, June 1. 

And please plan to visit Acosanti for our next concert, the Juneteenth Jazz Fest, June 16 and 17.

[photo & text: Jeff Stein]

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