Summertime is here according to my fried egg orchid!
The first half of 2014 has been wonderful! Our son is graduating with high honors from high school and entering the honors program at UF in the Fall and so our little nest will be empty soon! Fortunately he will be close by so we can hang out some and play some music together.
I am now booking shows for 2014-2015 and so if you’d like to host a house concert please let me know. If you’ve never held one before I’d be happy to advise you on how to do it and promise to help you make it a memorable and exciting evening. House concerts are really one of the best ways to hear acoustic music. Why? Because you’ll be in your own home surrounded by your friends listening to an intimate concert of music you enjoy.
This past weekend I played at the Florida Folk Festival for the first time: as a soloist and as part of Rebecca Zapen’s trio playing lead guitar, djembe and singing harmony vocals. What a wonderful time we had singing together, it was our first time and folks loved it. Saturday night we pulled together a small song swap with Ariana Hall, her friend Rosalie, Rebecca Zapen and mandolinist Mark Robertson-Tessi. Lucky for me, he agreed on the spot to accompany me on the Under the Oaks stage for my Sunday morning set, even though it was already wee hours of the morning when I asked him!
At the folk festival I was floored by a performance on the Heritage Stage by my friend Brian Smalley. This man has got IT, that special IT that galvanizes an audience. You just have to experience him live! Awesome guitar, unique songs, and a stage presence and energy that seems to radiate like a bonfire. Some of the acts that I enjoyed hearing for the first time were Michael Jordon, Passerine, Laney Jones and The Orange Grove Pickers. Two of my favorite sets were The Currys and Susan Browne with Jamie Defrates (when the power went out.) A big thank you to all the folks that made this festival happen, it was run beautifully and things seemed even keel even without power for a few hours. Leaving the festival I had the wonderful opportunity to get into a conversation with Maggie of Lucky Mud. So happy to have met another Florida gal who is a friend in spirit and also a wonderful singer and songwriter. One of the beautiful things about a festival is that not only do you hear great music but you also make new friends. The community is so wonderful that my lost camera was returned to me within an hour – thank you to the unknown but kind person that turned it in!
To top off the Folk Festival festivities, Cathy DeWitt recorded me on her internet radio show “The Traveler” this evening. I’ll post a link as soon as I get it.
The weekend prior to the Florida Folk Festival I attended the Southeast Regional Folk Alliance Conference in Montreat, NC. I drove up with Lauren Heintz, a fantastic finger style guitarist and songwriter. We landed at Pisgah Lodge on the Blueridge Parkway the night before the conference began. It was stunningly beautiful, the highest lodge on the parkway, and wildflowers were in bloom everywhere. At the conference I hosted a showcase room with my friend, Lauren Lapointe. We had some of the finest talent in the house play our room, including Brian Smalley and Friction Farm. One of the highlights of my trip was meeting a wonderful young songwriter & guitarist Matt Borello who accompanied me for two sets. What a treat it was, as he is also a fabulous accompanist. Everytime I attend SERFA I make new friends and this time was no exception. It is a special community that I am so happy to be part of.
The White Springs Folk Club begins its concert series at The Telford Hotel
The first concert in the series at the recently renovated Telford Hotel was with Larry Mangum, Brian Smalley and Elaine Mahon performing as songwriters in the round. We had a wonderful time with this marvelous listening audience and with each other. A special thanks to Larry Mangum and Walter McKinzie for making it happen.
In March I played “Rise Up Singing” with Boston’s Family Folk Chorale.
Please check out the video on my home page. This was an experience that I will never forget. What a joy it was to hear fifty voices harmonizing with me on my song. The director of the chorale, Chris Eastburn, did a marvelous job of arranging the song for chorus. Thank you Chris!
Since the beginning of the year I’ve been busy writing new songs and I am looking forward to beginning work on my next album with Lis and Lon Williamson at Gatorbone Studios later this summer. It is such an honor to be an artist on the Gatorbone Label which has an impressive client list of Florida artists.
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Have a wonderful summer folks, thanks for your support, and please visit my site often to stay on top of what’s coming up next!