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The Bert Holman Interview


Hey Great Uncle Nat, tell me a story. One about green and grey, one about legacy and one before lights out.

Nat Holman is most well known for being a professional basketball player but he also founded the camp known as Scatico. He was a facilitator as a player, making the extra pass, possessing a selfless leadership style that carried into the Catskills.

My guest today is part of the Holman family tree. Nat was his great uncle and make no mistake that precluded him from being in the inner sanctum. He had to play by the rules like everybody else although the rules at that time were much more lax and free.

The early sixties at Scatico mirrored much of the burgeoning folk rock scene that was percolating in the lower west side of Manhattan, or Boston or Los Angeles.

Vietnam had not yet fully gripped the nation, a yearning for authenticity within music was spreading, it wasn't about what you were wearing or how you looked but what you were singing about.

The burgeoning rock n roll experiment down in Alabama where the Hourglass of Paul
Hornsby and Duane Allman reflected the restrictions placed on musicians, knowing that the whole thing was jive. more on that later.

Unlike most of my Scatico subjects my guest today did not dwell on the sustaining relationships or the brotherhood. He took in the camp experience for what it was. Lessons in relationships, partnerships, leadership, spontaneity and a profound thirsting for music
Which he listened to on a portable record player with his bunkmates. He was a camper from 1960-64 when Jack Holman was still in charge. When he came back in '68 as a waiter things had morphed into a jamboree of wild experimental learning.

Today kids go to the infirmary to receive their meds, back than the Doctor was handing out scripts to the counselor staff who for all intents and purposes were living on reds, vitamin C and Powder Blues.

Those were the times and my guest was marinating in a sea of music that was blending rhythm and blues with soul, jazz and blues were getting funky before that genre ever existed. White Cats were trying to sing like Black artists and pulled it off quite well at universities all over the east coast. Including American university where my guest was the chair of the concert committee with a huge budget.

Free concerts, broadcast through the university radio stations, very little overhead and no liability. My guest is from a lineage of deeply successful people. They have been interconnected on so many levels that it's hard to believe.

My guests mother is 90 years young and one of the 4Ls of my program is love. Here's a big old heaping helping of love for you Mrs. Holman. They are not even close to blowing taps yet.

Bert Holman welcome to the JFS

Bert Holman [Download]


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