The Pyrates Royale have some difficult news to share with you, our friends, fans, and colleagues.
We will not be performing for the 2016 season of the Maryland Renaissance Festival.
Co-founder Brad Howard recently informed us that he has quit the band. Nearly a year prior to that, Damon Hersh and Ellie Cattle resigned because of personal obligations in the real world.
After fulfilling a couple of contracted performances the band will be dissolving.
Darcy Nair and Craig Williams are working on building a new band. We'll be doing a broader musical range of songs and tunes than in the past.
Most bands break up after several shows and are never heard from again. It's an unusual band that lasts more than a year. The Pyrates Royale lasted nearly three decades. There have been 17 members through those years. This is without even counting the mysterious deaths of our many drummers.
During that time we have played gigs from New York City to Key West and St. Louis; at fairs, tall ship festivals, The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, on historically important ships, and at corporate functions, not enough weddings, too many funerals, and a Cub Scout Blue and Gold Dinner.
We've also been fortunate to have shared stages with wonderful musicians who have warmly welcomed us at every turn. To our friends The Corsairs, The Ship's Company Shantymen, The Crimson Pirates, Gypsophilia, The Brigands, Janie Meneely, Rich Follett, William Pint and Felicia Dale, The Boarding Party, and the various talented musicians of the Carolina Renaissance Festival, Sterling Renaissance Festival, Georgia Renaissance Festival, Florida Renaissance Festival, Virginia Renaissance Faire, Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire as well as to dozens of others we've met along the way, thank you.
But the most important performances for us have always been those at the Maryland Renaissance festival. MDRF is the best festival we've played; and we've been very fortunate to have done that. This fest was our birthplace and home. It would be difficult to overstate the level of support that the Smith family, Carolyn Spedden, and the cast and crew have shown us. We are so very grateful for their many kindnesses and concessions over the years. They continue to be our Renfaire heroes.
Please don't call or email the office staff to complain about our absence. We haven't been fired. The PRs are walking into the sunset for our own reasons.
We are also thankful to our various camp followers and CD sellers: Michael Heaney, Brian Hemloche Lazar, Kim Workman, Shaun M. Bagley, Eric Dunn, Meredith Eriksen, Sam Cattle, and our Camp Mom Linda Lazar. They worked long hard days for us, and we appreciate their labors.
Finally, we thank the hundreds and thousands of fans and friends we have met along our journey. Without your support and appreciation our band would not have lasted as long as it did. We've come to know many of you personally. We don't know if it showed, but there were many times that the simple act of being allowed to perform for you has gotten us through some very difficult personal times. The deaths of our dear friends Bill Huttel and Paul DiBlasi and the events of 9/11 are only the most obvious examples. We valued your friendship and the various toys and baked goods you've shared with us.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for all you have done for us.
Craig Williams for The Pyrates Royale
Been there, done that... burned the place down:
NC Maritime Museum's 35th Annual Wooden Boat Show
Cape Charles Pirate Festival
A Victorian Christmas Music Hall
Pyrates Royale Cruise to the Carribean
Pyrates Royale Cruise to Bermuda
First Night Dover
First Night Annapolis
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