On October 19th, during South Haven’s Haven Harvest Festival, the Michigan Maritime Museum will host the legendary Great Lakes balladeer Lee Murdock. Murdock will perform Great Lakes Ghosts from 7:00 pm-9:00 pm at the Museum. This is a narrated concert featuring songs of supernatural legends and spooky tales of ghost ships, haunted lighthouses, and unexplained phenomena.
Murdock has discovered a boundless body of music and stories from the Great Lakes. His focus on Great Lakes music began as a simple interest in finding the folk songs from his own local history. “I sort of ‘fell in’ to the Great Lakes by accident,” says Murdock, “but once I started performing songs about the Great Lakes, my audiences kept asking for more. And the stories and songs just keep coming.”
Noted as a fluent instrumentalist on the six and twelve string guitars, Murdock combines ragtime, Irish, blues and folk styles with his flair for storytelling in songs. His musical influences span fifteen generations. Murdock began his folk career in the Chicago area in the mid-1970s, expanding his repertoire of blues and popular music as his interest in folk music and the maritime tradition grew.
Murdock’s songs create an unforgettable image of commerce and recreation as they coexist on the Great Lakes today, with huge cargo ships traversing vital shipping lanes while pleasure craft of all types and sizes share the waters along America’s fourth coast. Lee’s songs and stories share the tragedy and the heroics, the isolation and the breathtaking beauty of lighthouse lore and the US Life Saving Service (later known as the Coast Guard).
With a deeper understanding of the folk process, Lee’s repertoire combines historical research and contemporary insights. Murdock’s work is both documentary and also a contemporary anthem to the people who live, work and play along the Great Lakes today.
Admission is $10 for Museum members, $15 for non-members, and $5 for children (under 4 free). Tickets may be reserved in advance by calling 269-637-8078. Seating is first come first serve. The Museum will be open 10am-5pm Wednesdays through Saturdays the month of October. For more information visit www.michiganmaritimemuseum.org/events.