In this issue…
2. News Updates: Ireland tour, Waymores album, website & fundraising
3. Drawing Board: My wish list!
4. Food for Thought: Harmon Killebrew, Mark Twain, Arthur Miller, Dick Goodwin
5. TK Poem of the Month: To Tweet or Not to Tweet
6. Recommended: My new favorite gizmo + healthy FAST food + fine summer movie
Happy Solstice everyone! Longest day of the year! (And welcome Summer!) It’s jungle-like in Tennessee at present due to a long rainy Spring–and that’s about all it takes to make things grow like crazy here.
A. Ireland tour update
For those of you who are teetering on the brink of coming to Ireland with me in late August, we are down to 2 (count ’em) seats remaining on the tour bus, so come on!
For new readers: I’m taking a group of 22 friends and fans to Ireland with me in late August.
For more, click here.
For the whole schmear, click here.
B. Waymores album and fundraising
i. Album progress
For reasons beyond our control we’ve been moving rather slowly down the home stretch toward completing our debut album. However “moving” is the key word! We’ve got our first “single” mixed, and it sounds so sweet. Now we’re impatiently waiting for studio days to open so we can proceed with our Grammy winning mix master, Ray Kennedy. (And big thanks to Ray for taking us on.)
ii. Funding Waymores work and dreams
Thank you, thank you, thank you to all of you who’ve contributed to the Waymores fundraising efforts. Because of your generosity we’re going to have an album out this year.
My talented friend Marcus Hummon once said that he begins songwriting workshops by asking his students if they are willing to take a vow of poverty!Unfortunately, he’s only half joking!
In this fast-changing musical landscape artists are sailing into a brave and uncertain new world–a world that takes a community of supporters to keep the the musical boat afloat. We literally can’t do it without you.
(A second round of fundraising will begin soon so we can promote the thing.)
iii. New Waymores website
It’s modest, but now it’s up and we can build on it.
To visit, click here.
(You can also sign on for our newsletter there.)
3. Drawing Board: What I’m dreaming up
A. The songbook. Someday! Seriously Chas Williams (author of the excellent book, The Nashville Number System) just sent me his first batch of song charts for my approval. We’re inching along.
B. I’ve upgraded my Tree House Studio over the past couple of weeks, and I look forward to recording a string of demos and album tracks over the coming weeks and months
C. I’ve got lots of new material toward another book of poems… and a book of essays and stories.
D. I am yearning to get a solo album recorded and released before another year goes by.
4. Food for Thought:
“My father used to play with my brother and me in the yard. Mother would come out and say, ‘You’re tearing up the grass.’ ‘We’re not raising grass,’ Dad would reply. ‘We’re raising boys.'”
–Harmon Killebrew, Baseball Player (1936-2011)
“You can’t reason with your heart–it has its own laws. It thumps about things which the intellect scorns.”
-Mark Twain, Author (1835-1910)
“Don’t be seduced into thinking that that which does not make a profit is without value.”–Arthur Miller, Playwright (1915-2005)
“If I don’t practice one day before I play, I know it. If I don’t practice two days, everybody knows it.”
–Dick Goodwin, Jazz Musician (b. 1941)
5. Poem of the Month
(This month’s poem of the month is an essay.)
To Tweet or Not to Tweet
To tweet, or not to tweet? Of course I know the obvious answer: tweet hard, tweet fast, and tweet often! And yet I resist.
Perhaps I’ve crossed a certain line of demarcation drawn between my physical body and any hope of finding a wide audience in the modern world. My friend Walker, a real estate agent, shared with me that he learned recently at a real estate workshop the three absolutely essential tools for the realtor: internet, internet, internet!
Blog, he said. Tweet. Blog and tweet and blog some more. Build a mailing list. Remind people at every possible opportunity that you exist. Not only that, but that you exist and are still in business. They will assume, he said, that you know what you’re talking about and are doing a good job.
This is also the kind of thing I hear at music conventions. The debate rages about whether or not music should be free. Whether or not artists and writers should be in some way compensated for their songs and recordings. Panels of experts espouse the necessities of viral marketing, social networking, blogging, tweeting… Tweeting! Woe to the luckless artist who refuses to tweet!
And yet here I am. Tweet-free. Tweet-less. Tweet-impaired. And gloomily defiant about it. Why?
(Continued… The entire short essay can be found here.)
6. Recommended: My new favorite gizmo + healthy FAST food + summer movie
A. The Gizmo: Hamilton Beach Single-Serving Blender
I have the bad habit of skipping meals when I’m busy. I’ll wait to eat till I’m starved, then eat too much of the wrong stuff. But now there’s hope in the form of the Hamilton Beach Single-Serving Blender! This little wonder whips up a smoothie in seconds, so there goes my excuse for a breakfast or lunch consisting of a cup of coffee and bag of Cheetos.
Seriously, this thing is the real deal. It does what it’s supposed to do, does it lightning fast, is piece of cake to clean, and the little canister (which has a travel top) fits in your car’s cup holder.
Note: my unit is model # 51103. There’s a very similar model with a different number, but they look the same to me.
I should also mention that this little guy is not designed for prolonged blending or heavy duty chopping… but it’ll crush ice if you goose the button a few times. Only $15 online. Best money you’ll ever spend.
B. What to put in it: Spiru-tein High Protein Energy Meal
If you need some high quality protein powder for your smoothie, look no further than “Spiru-tein High Protein Energy Meal. It’s vegetarian, super high quality protein (from rice, peas and soybeans), it tastes great, and it works like a charm in the handy dandy Hamilton Beach Single Serving Blender. About $27 online for the Vanilla, a little more at your local natural foods store.
C. Summer Movie: Woody Allen’s “Midnight in Paris”
What a treat! Ranks with Woody’s best. See it!