Tom Rigney’s fiddle playing gets everyone dancing

by Linda Hubbard Gulker on August 4, 2010

Girls enjoying Bill Rigney at Fremont Park in Menlo Park

The usual pre-school/early grade school good-natured chaos that permeates Menlo Park’s weekly summer concerts in Fremont Park was tempered this evening by a musician with a point of view who brought out an older crowd who were not only eager to hear the music but to dance. That’s not to say it dampened the spirit of younger participants in the crowd – especially those who had the benefit of Daddy’s shoulder.

Fiddler Tom Rigney (below left) was the musician performing with his band Flambeau. He played a mix of Cajun, Zydeco and classics like Eden Ahbez’s Nature Boy along with some Tom RigneyIrish flavored tunes. (And, yes, long time Bay Area residents he is the son of one time Giants manager Bill Rigney.) Roots music enthusiasts know Rigney from his days with The Sundogs and Back in the Saddle. How this Harvard MFA, son-of-a-baseball-man came to this particular musical genre just may be a story next time he makes his way to the mid-Peninsula.

One final note: Amidst tonight’s good summer party fun was a real hint of a concert. And that was welcome in Menlo…

Top photo by Chris Gulker; photo of dancers and Rigney by Linda Hubbard Gulker.

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