London Fawming.

Euro-fawmers meetup in London

I took the above photo yesterday in Regent’s Park, London. The folks here are part of an informal gathering of “fawmers” (participants in the FAWM.ORG challenge I help organize) that we set up here in the UK… plus a few friends who were along for the fun. Present here are, clockwise from front: my jacket, representing me (Cambridge, via Madison WI), Matt (Oxford), Bill (aka “Morti,” Canturbury), Ryan (Cambridge, via Fairbanks AK), Alex (I think…? a friend of Morti), Paul (”Hoopshank,” from near Gloucester I believe), Helen (London), Ian (friend of Andy), Andy (”Levitator,” London), Marie Tueje (London), and Tim Wille (Ã…rhus, Denmark, who flew in just for the occasion on the promise of much chocolate, tea, and Marmite to his wife). Nine people representing three nationalities who, for the most part, didn’t know each other at the beginning of the year and had never met before. We got several concerned glances from passers-by at this eclectic congregation with guitars.

We started trickling in around noon at the Green Note, an acoustic venue in Camden Town where we each shared 3 songs apiece at their open mic. We then wandered to this park for a chat, sharing FAWM war stories, etc., before piling into the tube southward to Waterloo to The Stage Door, where we dominated that open mic as well.

Now, I have met other fawmers before… meaning people I got to know online through the challenge but met “in person” later. And it’s always a fun and humbling experience. But it was a extra-surreal to be part of a mass-meetup like this. It was particularly neat to share music in person that you’ve just heard online… songs that you know were just written a month ago and you watched evolve through this cyber-scope. To take it up a notch, Tim got to see a song that he co-wrote mere weeks ago performed for him at a Pub in another country by someone he’d only just met (Paul, the other co-writer). How wild is that?!?! Andy also made an impromptu reference to “strangle disco” in one of his songs (an inside-joke “genre” that got way out of hand), to which eight of us laughed amid an audience of very confused (and concerned?) faces.

One of the open mic leaders asked me how often we get together to do this, and I had to explain that we met for the first time today. (Confusion again.) And even though most of use were only meeting for the first time, it was a still bit like a reunion of old friends: we had this insane accomplishment to share between us. I’m glad I was able to be here for it. I hope as this FAWM thing grows and grows, many more opportunities like this will happen, and many more people have similarly fabulous and surreal experiences.

1 Response to “London Fawming.”

  1. 1 Tim Wille Mar 26th, 2007 at 6:15 pm

    Hey Burr,

    may I echo your sentiments. It was a unique and highly memorable day, and I felt very privileged to be a part of it!

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