August 22, 2004

Yesterday's band practice has me flying high...although not the full band was there, we had all but 2 members and started working on some of my new tunes with a new instrument. My KORG keyboard finally had to put its walking shoes on and I introduced 3 new songs to the band, plus we worked up 'Brave New World' with me on keys instead of guitar. Although it had seemed in months previous that there might have been some reservations about how things would work with me on piano (I play piano entirely differently than I play guitar - and I don't just mean in the obvious ways due to the difference in instrument. I play the piano more as a self-contained solo instrument, and am definitely a background rhythm player on guitar) but everyone jumped right in and seemed very excited about the new songs. Ideas were flying from every direction. BA recorded the session and it's amazing how 'nearly complete' those new songs sound after only a couple hours of practice. We are planning on having these new songs ready (plus several more) for the October 15th CD release of the Nashville EP, 'Out of the Wilderness.' We are experimenting with different genres and sounds, as this is a good time to allow ourselves total freedom since we're taking this new direction with the keyboard. The songs that I write for piano are distinctively different than those I write for guitar, so it's going to be a lot of fun to follow this path where it leads us.

Kevin, who has been taking photos for us for several months now, was also there but regretfully didn't have his camera. It would have been fun to have a visual memory of this night. I was once again reminded of how and why I keep doing music; it constantly surprises me. I am renewed and excited about things.

August 15, 2004

Music Folk in St. Louis, where I performed last night, is a very beautiful little music store specializing in wood instruments; guitars and violins abound, and they make it their goal to promote acoustic music and get songwriters together to network and share fans. I performed in-between a set by Tom Wood, and Patsy O'Brien. Patsy, a guy who has toured all over the states and in some other countries (like his ancestral Ireland) was exceptional in his live performance and songwriting. Tom had some great stories to tell and was a dynamic personality. I felt honored to be playing among these two gentlemen, and the night went well. It felt a little bare and a little strange to be stripped of all the usual "gear" that stands before me onstage; no microphone, no stand, no cords, no nothing. Just me and a stool and a guitar and my voice, belting it out to the very back row like I used to when it was just me in my little apartment and someone would come and ask to hear a new song. I don't know why I was nervous to get back to that, but it did, after all, feel pretty good. And it was my first ENTIRELY solo performance in about 5 years!

August 9, 2004

So last Saturday night was definitely one of the highlights of my performance career! My band had a chance to open for Little Feat at the Beaumont Club in Kansas City, and it was fantastic! First of all we had great gear and great sound, which always makes performing more fun; we were in great playing form, and we appreciated the excellent crowd response! There were some tapers there, and so our opening set is floating around out there, followed by Little Feat's 2-1/2 hour mind blowing set!

A couple of Little Feat's band members congratulated me on the set and said they thought my music was great, which was the height of a cool compliment from these musicians' musicians. Little Feat concert-goers are mostly musicians themselves, and they can be both critical and die-hard loyal. These were die-hard loyal and they embraced us like they'd come to see us just as much as to see Feat. We've gotten lots of free photos from photogaphers who were shooting pics during the show. I was telling my mom about the show yesterday and one of the things I said was that it's so awesome to me that we have these photographers who attend our shows and share their talents with us. If it weren't for them, I'd have no recorded memories of anything I am doing right now because I never have a camera in my own hand, I always just have a guitar, a microphone, or a CD in my hand. Thank you Kevin!!!! Thank you other photographers who've given us permission to use your work!

Thank you to the 1200+ crowd that was at the club Saturday, many of whom came up and talked to me after the show with words of support and encouragement. It was a great night for all of us.

Thanks to Little Feat for helping get the ball rolling to get us on the stage before them. These people, who've been on the road for about eight weeks without a break, pushed their sound check up 45 minutes for us so that WE'D get a chance to sound check and have the best show we could have. Thank you members of LF!!!!

Also thanks to my other acoustic guitarist Bill Adams who really sparked this whole thing. He has a radio show on KOPN 89.5 (Blue Plate Special) which showcases much of Little Feat's music and he's been a fan and follower of Little Feat for nearly as long as they've been around. If it weren't for him handing my discs to the members of LF and keeping us in their minds, there's no way this could have happened. Thanks BA!

I also had a chance to meet a representative from the KC-based Clear Channel promotions office, and he heard our entire set, which is great. I hope we have the chance to work with these people again in the near future.

In any case, we met some new listeners, we shared a stage with a fantastic band, we had a great time and we won't soon forget it.