Cliff has been performing at the Griswold Inn for 50 years, now! He’s been there longer than any of the employees and also the Owners, the Paul Family! Here’s to our man Cliff! He’s inspired a couple of generations of singers and brought countless new converts to the genre! He still holds court when he opens his mouth, and can quiet the loudest of audiences! He can cause you to laugh or to melt your heart! And we all love the man dearly!

photo by Abby Southworth


Someone inscribed this in the men’s bathroom, over a standing urinal!

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Cliff and his Jovial Crew

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Portsmouth Maritime Music Festival

I’ll be in Portsmouth, New Hampshire on the last weekend of September this year for the Portsmouth Maritime Music Festival. It’s a wonderful event and right in the heart of the city. See below.

Hello, and happy March! Spring is coming to Portsmouth, and we have exciting news. Read on for our 2022 Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival headliners, this month’s virtual chantey sing, and what you can do to help!
We are planning a full, in-person return to the streets of Portsmouth this fall, Saturday September 24 and Sunday September 25. We really hope to see you there, but we will also have some online streaming available for the wonderful international community that has grown up around virtual sings during the pandemic.
CHANTEY SING: Our monthly chantey sing is this Saturday, 3–5 pm eastern US time.
CONN. SEA MUSIC FESTIVAL: Also this Saturday, the shiny new Connecticut Sea Music Festival is having a benefit concert and art auction. See http://ctseamusicfest.org/…/outward-bound-benefit… for details. Several PMFF board members and volunteers will be there, and part of our online chantey sing will be broadcast from nearby. Stay tuned for some harmonies!
PMFF PIZZA FUNDRAISER: Flatbread Pizza in Portsmouth donates a portion of their proceeds to a non-profit each Wednesday evening. On June 22, PMFF will be the recipient; there will also be a silent auction of donated items there. Stop by, get a great pizza, enter a bid, and help us out! Auction winners will be notified at the end of the evening; there is no need to stick around.
VOLUNTEERS: We need YOUR help to make this festival work. If you’re in the area, we need flyer-posters, water-schleppers, program-handers-out, and more! You can sign up at https://www.signupgenius.com/go/8050444aeab2ca20-portsmouth or drop a line to volunters@pmffest.org. If you’re not in the area, we will need some volunteers to help with the online part of the festival, too, and we can always use donations at https://portsmouth-maritime-folk-festival.square.site/ too.
ART CONTEST: We want to help our aging woodcut sailors retire. Do you have a proposed PMFF logo to replace them? We’ve already had a few submissions.
DAVID COFFIN is known to most of you for his years of work as one of New England’s leading traditional musicians or his forty years with Revels. He is now also a TikTok star, due in part to a viral video of him performing in Market Square at a previous PMFF. Learn more at https://davidcoffin.com/
VIENNA CARROLL is a singer, playwright, actor, and historian from New York City, interpreting African-American history and song. Her play, “Shallow Brown,” was previewed at the Mystic Sea Music Festival Symposium in 2018, and we look forward to hearing her powerful voice filling the streets of Portsmouth. Visit https://viennacarroll.com/ for more details.
CLIFF HASLAM has hosted the legendary Monday chantey sings at the Griswold Inn in Essex, Conn., for decades. His resonant English voice graced our festival in 2015, and we are excited to have him back as a headliner. See his Web site at https://cliffhaslam.com/
Fair winds and following seas,
The PMFF Board
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An Interesting Read!

An article involving Cliff and Monday nights!

Traditional Folk Music and a Six-Pack



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The River Lee

Another from the Port Jefferson festival. The River Lee, which is a traditional text but the melody here was composed by Gina Dunlap. Joseph Morneault on the English concertina.

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Ferry Ride

On the way to the 2d October 2021 Port Jefferson “Sea Shanty and Maritime Music Festival”…

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One-Eyed Haslam!

Monday, 28 June 2021, Cliff will finally return to our regular venue – The Griswold Inn! The doctor has given the green light, but Cliff will still need to take it easy. He’ll be sporting his pirate eye-patch for a while and not singing quite as forcefully until everything is back to rights, but do come down as see the man!

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The Return

While The Jovial Crew has returned to the stage with the reopening of venues in the state, Cliff has had some eye issues and was obligated to undergo eye surgery. This has prevented him from returning with the band, but we have high hopes of his rejoining us by the end of June or early July. Stay tuned for updates.

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Out on the town

Spring has arrived and with vaccinations, stopping in at a restaurant is conditionally back on the menu! Cliff met up with Marci, Kitsie, and Joseph for beer, a good lunch, and a lot of catching up!

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Merry Christmas

From my Jovial Crew:

This has been a tough year for all of us. We’ve lost ones we love, all our gigs shut down, and while ZOOM can help with seeing people, there’s no current replacement for being together and singing our hearts out. Please may this coming year show more light, more happiness, and a return to a greater degree of normalcy. Our love to all of you, and as good a holiday as can be had!

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