Eder Documents Near-Perfect Waterfront Blues Festival


That crouching, ever-moving figure in kneepads on the Waterfront Blues Festival stage last week was none other than CFM Partner Norm Eder.

Eder, who builds sailboats and ukuleles in his spare time, is a skilled photographer who leads a volunteer, four-person team that documents all the performances and events at the Blues Festival at McCall Waterfront Park. This was Eder's 10th year as the event's documentary photographer.

"It has been amazing to watch the festival grow," Eder says. "Now, from the first chord, it runs likes a smooth machine."

This year's festival was blessed with near perfect weather conditions, which added to the sparkle of Eder's photographic record of the 3-day event that drew thousands to the waterfront, making it one of the biggest — and many say the best — blues festival in the country.

The event is the major annual fundraiser for the Oregon Food Bank and generates more than $1 million to buy fresh food and pay for gas to deliver it to needy families.

One of the most remarkable performances, Eder says, was by the United for Music kids. This program matches developmentally challenged youngsters with local professional musicians who tutor them on singing, playing their instruments and stage style. Eder said their performance was "electric." 

"The group that tore up the stage this year," he added, was Los Lonely Boys. And Curtis Salgado, who filled in at the last minute for Gregg Allman who canceled for health reasons, gave one of his best Festival performances ever, Eder said.

The passion Eder brings to the event and the music is reflected in his photographs.