Author Rick Massimo will be giving multimedia talks on his book I Got A Song: The History of the Newport Folk Festival in advance of this year’s milestone 60th anniversary of the world-renowned event. Massimo’s “mini” Rhode Island Tour starts on Sunday, July 21 with an afternoon talk at Barrington Books and continues with evening engagements throughout the week at Barnes & Noble Middletown, Savoy Bookshop & Café in Westerly. Redwood Library & Athenaeum in Newport and the Newport Public Library. 

Rick Massimo, Author and Historian.

Published in 2017, Massimo’s I Got A Song is the first-ever book exclusively devoted to the history of the Newport Folk Festival. Eight years in the making, I Got A Song: The History of the Newport Folk Festival documents the incredible trajectory of this cornerstone festival of American music over its 60 years. Massimo shares his unique insight into the changing definition of folk music, the struggles and ultimate successes of the festival and how the modern acts of today see themselves in relation to the event’s original performers.

Rick Massimo’s historical research was complemented by extensive interviews with the people who were there and who made it all happen, including festival producers George Wein, Bob Jones, and Jay Sweet; artists such as Pete Seeger, My Morning Jacket’s Jim James, Judy Collins, Peter Yarrow (of Peter, Paul, and Mary), Colin Meloy (of the Decemberists) and Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, and audience members from every era.

A Rhode Island native, Rick Massimo was the music critic for the Providence Journal, winning awards in arts criticism, media, science, and health reporting in his 17 years with the paper. He is also the author of A Walking Tour of the Georgetown Set. He lives with his wife in Washington, D.C.


Sunday, July 21, 2019, 2:00pm to 3:00pm
Barrington Books , 184 County Road, Barrington, RI
(401) 432-7222, Free, no registration required.

Monday, July 22, 2019,  6:30pm to 7:30pm
Barnes & Noble – Middletown, Middletown Village, 1311 West Main Rd, Middletown, RI
(401) 846-3313, Free, no registration required.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019, 7:00pm to 8:00pm
Savoy Bookshop & Café, 10 Canal St., Westerly RI
(401) 213-3901, Free, no registration required.

Wednesday, July 24, 2019, 5:30pm to 7:00pm
Redwood Library & Athenaeum, 50 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, RI
Registration at (401) 847-0292 or Members $10; Non-members $20.

Thursday, July 25, 2019, 6:00pm to 8:00pm
Newport Public Library, 300 Spring Street, Newport, RI
(401) 847-8720, Free, no registration required.