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Read the lineup for the 1999 Festival

The 1999 festival ran June 25 through June 27! When is 2000's festival?

1998's Annual Frog Island Music Festival

JUNE 26-28 1998

Newest pages, Marcia Ball-Irma Thomas-Tracy Nelson; Johnny Favourite Orchestra.

Frog Island Music Festival
Folks In The Crowd
More Folks
Twistin' Tarantulas
Marcia Ball, Irma Thomas, Tracy Nelson
Anson Funderburg and the Rockets with Sam Meyers
New 8-18, Chubby Carrier and the Bayou Swamp Band
George Bedard and the Kingpins
New 8-19 Eddie Shaw and the Wolf Pack
Keb' Mo' Band
Johnny Favourite Orchestra
Little Brian Terry and the Zydeco Travelers
Motor City Street Band (not made yet)
Surprise! Page 3 of People
Scrumptious tucker at Tucker's (not made yet.)
Tell-Mama missed The Imperial Swing Orchestra
Tell-Mama missed Thornetta Davis and Oo Papa Dah
Tell-Mama was unable to go to Sunday's Gourmet Jazz Picnic.

Overview of the Frog Island Experience

Our Tentative Times music e-zine, Tell-Mama, ventured beyond Indiana to find more great bands for you. It was an overwhelming experience. Anyone who wants to put on a music festival could learn a great deal from Frog Island. Frog Island is in Depot Town, the historic section of Ypsilanti, Michigan.

Please write to Sandra Weinhardt at if you have reviews of the Frog Island bands or other contributions or corrections. Sandra is Tell-Mama and is solely responsible for this page, these photos and any errors on this page.

Here is what the Ark site says about the history of Frog Island festival:

"The Frog Island Festival is a project of The Ark, a not-for-profit membership organization which has presented folk, ethnic and other traditional music in Ann Arbor for 33 years.

The festival is produced in cooperation with WEMU (89.1 FM), Ypsilanti, Public Radio from Eastern Michigan University. WEMU founded the festival in 1982.

SPECIAL THANKS also for support from The Depot Town Association, The Ypsilanti Visitor's and Convention Bureau and The Ypsilanti Downtown Development Authority."

How it began for Tell-Mama

You pull into town. You know no-one there. You find your motel in incredible heat and learn you are on the top floor, with no luggage cart and no ammenities and no air conditioning working. No place to hang your clothes. "No refunds." You learn lesson #1, don't take a room sight unseen. Never ever.

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Helpful Angels     One of the first things to do in a new town is find were to get your flat tire fixed. I was unstrung when I found my flat, as soon as I pulled into my motel. Fortunately I had a can of flat-fixer in my trunk and was able to creep to Discount Tire. They kept me in air-conditioned comfort and then wouldn't let me pay for the tire repair! Seems this is their policy for stranded folk. By all means, use Discount Tire if you are where they are. A wonderful chain! If you aren't where they are, get them to build near you.

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Now you go back and try to clean up, unpack, head out for the venue and find a parking place. Once out of the car, find a bite to eat.... Not a challenge in Depot Town, the darling historic district of Ypsilanti. Apple Annie at the Vintage Clothing store suggested Tucker's. Everyone in Depot Town was celebrating the grand opening of Tuckers, a tiny delicious cafe/coffee-house owned by the son of the Tucker car inventor. Don't miss the memorabilia in Tucker's. The grandson and granddaughter running the shop this summer are a treat to meet too.

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Another fine eatery is the Sidetrack Bar and Grill, two blocks from the venue. Their website is ourstanding!

Now find the venue itself. Bring a chair to sit on, or a blanket. Bring OFF for the occasional mosquitoe. You pay $20.00 a day to get in, or less if you buy in advance. Children 12 and under are free. Then you go down a steep hill to a meadow by a river, with a huge tent to shelter under. A quarter mile away are the pristine chemical pottys, which will have their own webpage here. Ranged around the outside edge are the food vendors, beer stands, CD sales and non-profits. The organizations depend on you for their funding. Shop 'til you drop.

Here's the unusual part. Your money is no good at the beer stands! You have to buy wooden tokens from a separate line, and use them for your beverages. No, you can't bring in your own unless it is in plastic, and you can't bring in any beer, wine or alcohol no matter what it's in, unless it is already inside you. Water was $1.50 (meaning three tokens) and beer was, I think, around $3.00 a glass. You can bring in picnic hampers, but they have to be searched.

Del Villarreal    Saturday afternoon's M.C. Del Villarreal is host of WCBN's "Go Cat Go! The Rockabilly Show" in the Ann Arbor/Detroit area. Del come to Rockabilly Rebel Weekend and invited us all to Frog Island. He also had to run our three nights of afterhours parties at RRW. It's a wonder he could make it to the stage at Frog Island, but he looked great.

Mudd House booth

Hospitality! Thanks to the Mudd House for bringing us coffees and fruit smoothies and shortcakes. Yummmm! Visit the Mudd House coffee house in Ypsilanti for stimulating conversation from a veteran Mudd slinger from Seattle. Joe's cuppa joe is terrific. It's at 317 West Cross Street, open Mon-Fri 7:00 am to midnight, Saturday and Sunday 9:00 am to midnight. Mighty long hours to work, Joe.

Additionally, although Friday night was promoted as New Orleans Night with special foods, that food vendor never showed up, leaving us with fair food or a hike up the hill to Depot Town. Also, Saturday was billed as "A Rockin' Roots Barbecue" but no bbq was available, making Tell-Mama cranky about driving six hours for these great feasts. Be forewarned.
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Tell-Mama concentrates on the photos and implores you to send in your comments about the bands. You are all welcome to send reviews by email to Sandra Weinhardt, or U.S. postal mail to 125 South Marion, Suite 101, Bluffton IN 46714.
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Links to Similar Pages

You can go to the cover of Otto any time.
This year's annual Rockabilly Rebel Weekend #6
Rockabilly Rebel Weekend #5
1996 Rockabilly Rebel Weekend #4
Bill Smoker's Awesome Review of the 1998 - Viva Las Vegas weekender
The Aitoo 98 Weekender in Finland, reviewed by the perspicacious Bill Smoker.
Here's the link to The Ark in Ypsilanti.

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