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Saturday Virtual Song Circle

PFS is holding weekly Saturday evening Virtual Song Circles. Come when you can, stay as long as you like. All kinds of music and all kinds of people are welcome. We'll follow the song circle practice of letting each person sing a song in turn and it is perfectly fine just to listen.

Get a computer with a camera and mic, light up your face, and point your browser to We'll be on line at six, and start singing by 6:30.

It's kinda fun - if you haven't been to one, try it.

ALSO: Check out this video we made - mostly for Instagram and Facebook, but you get to see it here too!


The Times, They Are Contagin'

Normally the PFS website has an extensive calendar of folk events, but these days, it's mostly a calendar of cancellations. But since about forever, Folkmusic has been essential during hard times, and Lord knows, these are hard times. We're going to try to give you useful information about how you can help others, and also some information about how you can keep the music flowing in your life, even if you are stuck in your house. Check back frequently, and if you have something you would like to share with the folk community, write to

Thanks to Kim McLaughlin for the following: during this difficult time, many musicians are suffering. Touring musicians make their living by performing music for us and right now it is very difficult for them. Our community can continue to support the artists who have brought us so many good times and great songs:

Many artists will be performing live online concerts as a way to earn some money. You can find a selection of these streamed shows at www.UndiscoveredMusic.Net/streamed
Visit your favorite artist’s website and purchase CDs and other merchandise.
Patreon is a website for making donations to creative artists. Go to Patreon, subscribe, find your favorite musicians and make a donation. There is often special material available only for contributors, so it's a good deal for you too.
YouTube musicians can earn money if enough of us watch their videos. Simply subscribe to your favorite musician's YouTube page and when they hit 1000 subscribers, they start to earn money when you watch their videos.
Also, do not forget the venues that may have difficulties during these times. House concert venues should be fine, since they are usually labors of love, and generally house concert hosts give all the take to the artists. You might consider contributing to our friends at Menucha Retreat and Conference Center and Artichoke Music, and of course PFS itself

Singtime 2020, Concerts Canceled

No one will be surprised to learn that we have come to the painful but inevitable decision to cancel Singtime 2020 and the two remaining PFS Concerts, Pat Donohue and Jodi Harms. We are in the process of contacting everyone who registered for these PFS events to arrange reimbursements. If you haven't heard from us yet, you will soon.

In the meantime, we urge you to stay safe and be kind.

PFS on Facebook and (sorta) on Instagram

If you use Facebook or Instagram, you can see what we have posted on those sites by clicking on the  and  icons that you will now find on every page. Warning: our Instagram is just starting up.

And, if you see something on this site that you would like to share on your own Facebook or Instagram site (and we hope you do!), just click on the sharing icon Sharing icon and follow the instructions. 
New Song by Bob Dylan

It's not every day we get to hear a new song by Bob Dylan. In fact, it seems like it's not every decade that he comes out with a new song these days.

But - it just happened: Murder Most Foul, a 17 minute recitation of events from 1963 centered around the murder of JFK. It's a heck of a song. Musically it has three chords and two or three notes, and a crapload of lyrics. Some are familiarly dylanesque: "Don't worry Mr. President, Help's on the way. Your brothers are coming. There'll be hell to pay. Brothers? What brothers? What's this about hell?"

Still, it's Dylan, and his bad songs are more intriguing than a lot of people's best songs, so give it a listen.

Do you feel stuck in that Lonesome Valley?

If shelter in place is getting in your face, and social distance feels like social isolation, then listen to this recording of Pete and Arlo singing You gotta walk that Lonesome Valley

But - wait! - that's not enough. You actually have to sing along with them! Actually open you throat and make musical noise. Really, and the louder the better.

That may seem silly, but do it.  And then let me know if you don't feel better afterwards!

Elsewhere on the site

Check out the Events menu to find about Concerts, Song Circles and other PFS events. 

This week's concerts are on the right, but there is much more on the Events Calendar, the most complete interactive listing of folk events in the Portland area. 

Do you have events that should be posted here? Let us know. Write to

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Upcoming Events

Since 1976, Portland FolkMusic Society has been active preserving, presenting and promoting folk music and arts in the greater Portland Oregon area. PFS sponsors song circles, concerts, workshops and retreats, and helps its members and the whole community pass the word around about folk music events, from old time ballads to sea shanties, from 60’s protest folk to contemporary singer-songwriters.

PFS is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization. 

Portland Folkmusic Society
P.O. Box 1448
Portland, OR 97207-1448

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