I moved to Bend over a year ago, but with the Omicron variant raging last winter and my father's passing last February it feels like I'm just getting started. I've been writing songs for a new album I'll record in 2023. Meanwhile I'd better learn to cross-country ski since it started snowing here on Halloween and is still at it.
I have gone through countless capos trying to find one that doesn't pull my strings out of tune. Two friends separately recommended D'Addario NS Tri-Action Capo and finally my search has ended. This is the one that works, no more retuning when I use it.
I drove into Bend a year ago on Oct. 22, 2021, following Tom who drove a 26' truck with all our stuff. I was happily listening to KPOV, the very cool eclectic community radio station here. So it's fitting that on the anniversary of our move to Bend, Tom and I will be playing and singing on air to celebrate the last day of the KPOV pledge drive. Our host is Rick Miller of Center Stage: we'll be streaming at kpov.org/center-stage.
I was listening to David Wilcox' incredible song "Chet Baker's Unsung Swan Song" and it inspired me to create a new Spotify playlist. I filled it with one bummer song each from some of the greats: Joni, David Wilcox, Leonard Cohen, Tom Waits, Rickie Lee Jones, Sam Cooke, Shawn Colvin, John Hiatt--and also more recent wonderful singer/songwriters like Jason Isbell, Kris Delmhorst, Becky Warren, and Corrine Bailey Rae. The last three songs are more hopeful but who knows, they might make you cry too:
There's much to do before the release of 13 Women, and since like most of you I'm still at home I'm sitting here doing it! Plus I've been playing all the songs to the dog we've been fostering, hoping that one of these months I can play for a live audience again. The first single "Just Give Me Everything" will release the day after Thanksgiving, when I hope you will all be sitting around digesting. Pre-orders of 13 Women start that day as well.
I had a wonderful couple of shows in Nashville and Berkeley in June. Thank you to J. Poet for my preview and picture in the East Bay Express before my show at the venerable Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, here's a tidbit: "Loop de Loop is marked by subtle, passionate lead vocals and lush, multi-layered harmonies." My 91 year old father was in attendance, making the show even more special. To my shock he liked one of my new songs, an acoustic-funk one called Spell, the best. He liked the beat! Video from both shows is coming soon.
Now I'm settling in to complete and record songs for my next album, songs inspired by women from US history.
I'm still Loop de Looping AKA doing shows to promote Loop de Loop. Plus I've been writing songs for a new concept album and just recorded the first few guitar tracks. All of the songs are in the voices of famous and not-so-famous people from American history. I played a couple of the new songs at my Radio Cafe show last month (thank you MJ Bishop for including me in that round), and the audience response made me think I might be onto something.
I'm performing songs from Loop de Loop at the wonderful Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, my hometown. I played several shows at the old Freight & Salvage but this is my first performance at the newer larger venue. I've heard so many good things about this space, I can't wait to play there. Thank you Don Arbor for inviting me to co-bill this show.
I don't know what it is about New Jersey, but three NJ artists cut a total of eleven of my songs over the summer: thank you J. Smit, Kristina Cordaro, and Gianna! Gianna's version of my song "Strange But True" is the single on her new album.
I had a blast singing backup at Scott Ramminger's Bourbon Street show last week in Nashville. His very cool album "Do What Your Heart Says To" is currently number 1 on the Roots Music Report R&B Album Chart. Check it out!
That's the formidable Mary Bragg, Phoebe Elliot, and Sarah Aili wailing along with me at my October 15th show. I threw them some complicated harmonies to learn and they sang them right back and then some.
We're in the final stages of mixing Loop de Loop--phew! In August we'll make it available via this site only, and we'll have CDs when we play some shows in California. This recording process has been a joy, but I'm looking forward to getting out of the studio and re-entering the world again.
April 2016: All this month and last singers came in to record backing tracks. Now Tom Manche and I are at the tail end of doing the vocal arrangements for the new CD Loop de Loop. Next up: more guitars. Hope to finish it this summer!