It's great that you're doing what you can to help out during the COVID-19 pandemic Russell. My oldest daughter has also been sewing masks for the last few weeks and donating them to friends and assisted living facilities in her area.
As some of you know, I'm a board member of a local group called the "Foothill Folk Society". We are dedicated to promoting and preserving the music and arts of our Appalachian foothill area here in southern Ohio. There are two annual projects we are involved in - collecting donations at our performances for the local food bank and also raising money to help provide free instruments and lessons for local youth who could not otherwise afford it. Due to "social distancing" during the COVID-19 outbreak, we have not been able to do any shows or provide donations to the food bank. Recently the board members agreed to take $500 out of our budget and donate it to the food bank to help them in their mission.
To help announce the decision to our membership, Bryan Joseph, president of our group, put together a video (or rather pics of members playing at our events over the years) using a song I wrote several years ago as a theme song for one of our performances (a pretend radio show WFFS). The song has since been used to open other shows. As a song writer, I'm always thrilled when other musicians cover my songs.
I've been meaning to post this for some time. Fits right in with CG's article.
Dirty Ed wrote:
Hmmmm...........if being a musician is good for your brain, then it's proof that I've not a musician.........
You are a musician. Just imagine if you weren't!
Well, maybe you're right, my brain could be worse.
Hmmmm...........if being a musician is good for your brain, then it's proof that I've not a musician.........
When I get into a song writing "funk", I often pick a subject and make a list of things that fall under the heading I've chosen. I've written a song derived from a list of things that make me smile, another from a list of my "favorite times", another about what I like about rain. Seems you've got a pretty good list to work from Phill.
Sorry about your loss Joe. Prayers for you, your mother and family.
Good to hear you've got things under control Derek. Jen and I were leaving last Friday to visit our youngest and her family in Orlando but cancelled the trip. We also had plans to visit our oldest in Pensacola next month but have decided to delay that trip too. Our middle daughter has left the city and is staying with us until this blows over. My son called and said he has been working from home for the last week and will continue to do so until his employer thinks its safe for everyone to return. Our oldest grand daughter informed us that one of the employees at the facility she works at in Charleston SC (her boss) is exhibiting the symptoms and is currently being tested.
I've got home projects to work on too Jim, so hopefully the next few weeks won't be too boring. Although I'm in excellent health, I'm told that since I'm 70 I'm still in the at-risk group, so Jen and I plan to stay home and wait things out. As you said, let's get through this.
Due to the attempt to mitigate the quick spread of the COVID-19 virus here in the US, each state government has issued restrictions and made suggestions involving public gatherings. In Ohio our universities have resorted to on-line classes only, grade schools and high schools are on extended 3-week spring breaks, casinos have been closed and sporting events cancelled. Any event that would involve more than 100 people has been cancelled.
I've received word that the Monday night gospel/bluegrass jam session I attend each week has been suspended as it is mostly attended by elderly folks who are the group most affected by the virus. Also the weekly open mic venues and the Saturday morning jam sessions at the local music store I attend each week may be cancelled for a period of time.
The restrictions will have an impact on my weekly social activities but I'm thankful that I live out in the country and have access to fairly isolated hiking trails and streams to fish and paddle, plus I have my guitars to play.
Has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your daily life yet?
Your songs are covered at campfires throughout the mid-Atlantic. Nice that they're getting stage time.
Bluestone and If I Were The Wind are better than almost everything that's been on the radio in the past fifteen years, and for novelty songs your Rich Kid Doctor is on par with Willie and The Hag's "It's All Going To Pot" or Willie's "I Woke Up Not Dead Again Today."
Thanks for the kind words Zurf. I'm now sitting at my computer and blushing..........
It would be funny if someone came and covered some of your originals.
I ran into a guy last week that I played a gig with several years ago. He now hosts a monthly jam session in a public library at a town about an hour away, and plays gigs occasionally with his son (one heck of a bluegrass picker). He said they often play some of my songs. I got a call yesterday from another musician friend that informed me that the "monthly jam session" is this evening and wanted to know if I'd like to attend it with him. I'll be thrilled if I get there and hear someone else playing one of my songs.
The town I live near (Chillicothe, Ohio, USA, population about 25,000) is probably typical in Ohio. Last Friday evening I was driving through town and stopped at a few "watering holes" I frequent. One had a country band, another a jazz group and the third a Bob Marley reggae cover band. The place that had the jazz band always features a dixieland band every Thursday evening. In all, there are over a dozen places that feature live music in our town, with rock, country and bluegrass being the prevalent genres. I'd guess that 100% are "cover" bands. It's a singer/songwriter's kind of hell. I play every Monday evening and every Saturday morning at jam sessions and one night a week at open mics, but I don't seek bookings and rarely play "gigs".
The last Saturday of February however, I'm booked to play a solo gig at a local winery from 6-9pm. I plan on playing my original tunes for the first 90 minutes or so. If the crowd seems to be enjoying it, I'll play my songs for another 90 minutes. If they're getting restless, then it'll be covers for the rest of the evening. It's the day before my birthday so if any of my musician friends are in the audience, I may also get some of them to join me on stage.
Someone brought a camera, filmed the performance and posted it on the Foothill Folk Society facebook page. It has a lot of crowd noise, children yelling, etc but should still give you some idea of the talented musicians in our little town.
The video is 2 hours long, but Mark Sentieri at about 28:00, Paul Brown at 40:00, Jay Scott at 1:09:00, Ashley, Amber, Rick and Irene at 1:26:00 and Ben True and the Basement Collective at 1:44:00 show the diversity of the music and the musicians who contribute their time to FFS.
That does sound busy. You're quite the individual volunteering for whatever was needed. I'm surprised they didn't ask whether you could build a few set pieces.
In some past shows we've done some fairly elaborate sets such as a living room jam session where the performers would knock on the door and be asked to come in and join in the music or a campground setting where we sat around a faux fire and played. (That was my favorite) This year it was pretty simple, just a normal stage setting. Or at least simple for the performers and most of us "helpers", but not for the sound man. He volunteers each year to bring his large trailer full of sound equipment, set it up and handle everything audio during the performance. When we use "sets", he has mics that he hangs from the stage ceiling, all instruments are acoustic and he has control over the "sound". This year with 5 mics on stands and every group wanting a particular volume or reverb etc for vocals and different settings for their plugged-in instruments it was a lot to ask of him, but he did a great job. (There were 7 acts, from solo performances to 5-piece country and rock bands.)
For some of us it's just a matter of volunteering our time, which retirees like me have plenty to give. The real kudos goes to the sound man and all the performers who turn down offers to play gigs at other venues to play as un-paid volunteers at our function each year.
As some of you know, I'm a board member of a non-profit group called the Foothill Folk Society, a group dedicated to promoting and preserving the music and arts of our beloved Appalachian foothill area. For the past 10+ winters we have put on a free concert in the auditorium/theater at the Chillicothe, Ohio branch of Ohio University. Each year we have a different theme for the performance. This year's theme was "Love Lost and Love Found". All the performers/groups were to play one song about love lost and another about love found and also recite a poem (or song lyric) about love.
I was asked over a month ago to play but knowing that there were several of the best musicians from our area willing to play, I declined and said I would only play if there weren't enough acts. As I figured, we soon had plenty of great musicians lined up for the evening. At one of our planning meetings I mentioned that I had looked in a dictionary and was surprised at all the definitions related to the subject of love. We decided that reading some of the definitions would be a great way to start the show, and I agreed to do this small part.
The show was scheduled for this evening (Saturday) and I had my small part prepared and ready at least a week beforehand. Two days ago I was informed that there was a chance that I may also be needed to fill in as the MC for the show. I agreed to do it if necessary. On Friday evening we unloaded PA equipment, did sound checks, and worked on stage lighting. It was then that I found out that the old-time banjo player who usually sits on stage and plays "ambiance" music for the 30-45 minutes between the time the doors open and the show starts was going to be a no-show so I volunteered to play my recently purchased all-mahogany Alvarez MPA66SHB parlor guitar. I have it strung with "Nashville High-Tune" strings and when played with metal finger picks it sounds similar to a mountain dulcimer.
So tonight the show opened at 7:00, I sat and finger-picked for about a half-hour before the show started, then read the "love " definitions to begin the show and then performed the duties of the MC for the night, introducing the acts (there were some incredible musicians) filling in spots with stories when needed, and appealing to the audience to open their wallets and contribute to our local food bank to help feed our poor neighbors (something we do each show).
At the end of each show we gather all the performers on stage to do a final song together to end the night. I was asked to sing one of the verses of "My Girl" (by the Temptations) I had not planned on it but since it's one of my favorite songs, I belted out the second verse.
Great night of music, received a lot of kind words from the audience afterward and on Monday will deliver a truck load of food to the Good Sam food bank (entire bed and back seat of my crew cab Dodge is filled with canned goods) along with $713.00 in donations.
A busy but enjoyable evening.
Nice one Ed, after spending a shedfull of cash on furniture and a load more on a flight to Israel, I think you deserve a little compensation for your charitability and understanding. 300 bucks is a drop in the ocean in comparison?
Well actually there have been 22 Canadian canoe trips over the years, but since its a low-cost hobby and I've always split the cost with 3 other paddling/fishing buddies I'd estimate we're about even in the amount of money spent for her trip vs my 22. The furniture she brought probably cost more than 10X what I paid for my Alvarez but I'm sure I'll get 10X the pleasure.
Thanks for the kind words Jim but I think you obviously have me confused with someone who can play........
Jen noticed my new guitar but I doubt she would notice if I added another raft, canoe or kayak to my fleet out in the garage.
Congrats Phill! Neo is right about begging for forgiveness rather than asking permission.
On one of my 2-week Canadian canoe trips a few years back, I came home to find all new living room and bedroom furniture - so last month while my spouse and her sister were visiting the holy land in Israel, I just happened to end up in a music store where I found a used all-mahogany Alvarez MPA66SHB parlor guitar in perfect condition. It was marked down to $280 US so it ended up in my music room and hardly left my hands for a week. Jen's only comment when she returned home and saw me playing it........ "What - another guitar?"
I spent yesterday installing an under-saddle pickup and stringing it with a new set of Nashville high-tune strings. I played it using metal finger picks during a half-hour set at a local bar last night and my new little baby got lots of compliments from both the bar patrons and the other musicians.
It was a grey day here in the state of Ohio too, but that is considered a good thing on the last Saturday of November each year, for this is when the scarlet and gray clad football players of the Ohio State University "Buckeyes" play against the maize and blue of the University of Michigan "Wolverines" in what is known as "The Game". This year was the 116th meeting of the two teams in what is considered the greatest rivalry in all of sports. Even the BBC came to the US several years ago and did a story about the rivalry.
I started the morning as I do most Saturdays, attending a two-hour jam session at our local music store, then returned home to watch "The Game" on TV with family members. The Buckeyes triumphed 56-27, making the state of Ohio proud once again. After watching part of a couple other games I retired upstairs to my music room and spent a few hours playing the new Alvarez parlor guitar I bought last week (all-mahogany MPA66SHB model). I decided to change strings and install a set of D'Addario "Nashville high-tune" strings. Wow! that little mahogany baby sounds real sweet - almost like a cross between a mountain dulcimer and a hammered dulcimer. I'm trying to compile a list of songs that are enhanced by the sound. I might take it to another jam session I attend every Monday evening, the Foothill Folk Society open mic I 'll attend on Wednesday and maybe bring it along and play a few songs on it Friday when I'm scheduled to play at a gig at the local art gallery. Should be an interesting week.
I think these are the best lyrics I've seen in your songs Scott.
I have a couple questions:
The chorus uses an ABCB rhyme scheme each time. The Bridge and three of the verses use an AABB rhyme scheme. The third verse uses an ABCC scheme. Was this planned? If the first line was split into two lines and the phrase "The choice is yours tonight" were removed it would follow the AABB structure of the other verses, but I've got a feeling the change was intentional. As we write in entirely different genres, I'm curious why you chose to make a change in that verse. Perhaps if I heard it played it would become clearer to me.
Also, the chorus uses a Bm,G/D,A/Bm,G/D,A,G pattern each time but the verses all use different chord configurations. Is this common in the style of music you play?
Anyway, keep up the good work and keep 'em coming.
I found this on youtube and hope y'all find it as interesting as I did. I'm guessing that starting about 60 years ago teenagers began to determine which musical genres rose to the top.
I don't know what changes have occurred or what prompted your decision to leave Chordie, but I want you to know how much I've appreciated and enjoyed reading your posts. You'll be in my thoughts and I wish you the best.
Did any of you watch Ken Burns new historical series called "Country Music"? I was visiting a daughter in Florida while it played on my local public TV station, but recorded all 8 of the episodes (2 hours each). Over the last week I've watched them all and have to say they are a "must see" for country, bluegrass and "roots" music fans as well as anyone who loves the history of music in the US.
My oldest grandson, a theater major at the University of West Florida, got a summer job at the "Tecumseh" outdoor drama, located within 20 miles of my home. A week ago he celebrated his 19th birthday so Jen and I hosted a party attended by family members and several cast members. After everyone left, Sam and I sat around a campfire, taking turns playing songs we've written. He's only been at it a short time so some of his efforts needed a little polish but his enthusiasm and joy of playing his own creations was contagious and has got me thinking about getting out the old pencil and notepad again after months of taking a "break" from writing songs.