I should also reconnect with my friends in The Portlanders, a local folk music group. The lead singer was Ivy's roommate before I moved in and the guitar player is an old comrade from the garbage wars, a Sunflower veteran.
I don't do well in such circumstances, as there tends to be a lot of ambient noise away from the music, so it is not an ideal social situation for me...introverted with bad hearing. I have found that musical situations, where the crowd is not too participatory, are not too bad.
It was fascinating watching the harpers' fingers fly. Plus, they had some interesting out of the ordinary instruments, like nyckelharps (a Swedish keyed harp that is played with a bow) and a basouki. One of the harps was a wire-strung, which is quite rare; to me it sounded more like a harpsichord, while the nylon strung harps had more of a piano sound. Yes, I teared up at one point, but all-in-all a good experience.