The Mission of the Possum
Mountain View has some of the most talented musicians in the great state of Arkansas, and I dare say in the United States of America. This little mountain town is known as a destination for hearing old-time mountain folk music as well as other antique genres such as the delta blues, classic country, bluegrass, and even some jazz. Typical of the mountain culture, it is a well-kept secret.
As the owners of the Wildflower Bed & Breakfast, we see a lot of guests that are new visitors to the area. They are amazed at all the music, hand-made crafts, and friendly people they see and hear. I wish I had a nickel for every time I heard, “I just didn’t know about this place.”
I also hear a lot from the folks who grew up in Mountain View about the days when there were over 100,000 people in the Square for folk festivals. They would all gather around the Court Square while music played on stage and in small groups all in that area. People would come from several counties (and neighboring states) around to sit, visit, and listen to great folk music.
Things have changed quite a bit since then. In this busy world, it is hard for people to find the time to venture out like they used to. Kids play sports several times per week, work takes up 40 to 60 (or more) hours each week, so the weekends are spent just relaxing at home.
There are also those who just cannot get out anymore. They are either physically unable or just not up to leaving the comfort of home. While they may have enjoyed traveling at one time, they are resting in the evening of their lives.
Communication technology has grown rapidly, enabling those who stay at home to be able to enjoy audio and visual experiences. For example, Ozark Highlands Radio broadcasts into several states by radio and around the world on the internet. People all over the world can audibly experience the sound of good old time mountain folk music.
Club Possum’s mission is to carry the audio and visual experience of a live string band within an intimate setting over the internet to those who are at home or on the road. Broadcasting on YouTube live, Club Possum provides a free-of-charge streaming show that anyone can watch live along with the live audience. After the performance, the YouTube videos are edited and reposted for continued enjoyment.
The musicians that play rely on tips to meet their expenses for playing. Our audiences are showing their appreciation for our performers by giving generous tips. The musicians receive 100% of the audiences contributions. Several generous businesses around Mountain View help to sustain some of the costs.
With just a few shows under our belt, Club Possum has already been successful. The few YouTube videos that are currently available have received many views. We have already had some of the band members’ relatives thank us for broadcasting so they wouldn’t miss their family members performance!
If you are in Mountain View on a Tuesday, come by a join us for a great live show. If you can’t make it, then tune in to the Mountain View Meeting Place YouTube page and catch it live. If you Subscribe, then you will get a notification whenever we go live. There is also live chat so you can ask questions, submit song requests, or just make comments.
Shelley and I are so grateful to be living in this wonderful community. We are also thankful that we can share the musical experience with our guests, visitors to Mountain View, and the world. Even though Mountain View may not see 100,000 people gathered in the Court Square, I believe that through today’s modern technology, Mountain View’s music will reach at least 100,000 people. And many, many more.
Christopher Smith, co-owner
Wildflower Bed & Breakfast
Mountain View Meeting Place