Greetings all! I bet you thought I’d fallen off the edge of the world. In looking back, I see that it’s been over a year since I published a newsletter. Where does the time go? I am so sorry for being neglectful! One of my resolutions for 2018 is to be more communicative with my fans.
Something else that will be happening in 2018 is that I will be launching a Patreon page. If you’re not familiar with Patreon, it’s a platform that brings artist patronage and crowdfunding together. It will allow fans to support my work on an ongoing basis, which will help free up my time and mental energies to focus on creating things. Patrons will receive special content as well as a number of other rewards, based on their level of support. Watch for the big announcement coming in January!
Over the summer I had the opportunity to become a tour guide on a submarine. Really! I’m giving tours on the USS Blueback, which is part of OMSI, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. This has given me a nice outlet as an entertainer, and it has also helped me improve my public speaking skills. A friend of mine who does motivational talks has convinced me to give that a try, and I am doing research into those possibilities. 2018 is going to be a very busy year, with lots of opportunities for growth. I find that exciting, and just a little bit scary–which seems like a good combination to create something new and interesting!
My non-musical life has kept me busy of late, and I haven’t had much time to work on new music. As my career profile changes, I hope to have more time to spend on music in general, and on writing in particular. Part of the creative process for me includes ideas that come from my interactions with others, so don’t be shy about saying hello–you never know where a new song will come from!
This summer I helped form The Purple Heron Trio. We play jazz, blues and things in between. It’s a challenge for me and it’s great to spend time playing with others. We are bass (me), keyboard, and vocals right now, but are looking to expand our lineup to include drums and maybe a horn or two. Of course, then we’ll have to be The Purple Herons, since we won’t be a trio any more.
The Strumming By The Sea guitar seminar didn’t happen due to lack of interest, and I have to admit that I was really bummed out for a while. But I learned a lot during the process, and will use that knowledge in the future. This seminar grew from an idea into a dream for me, and I really want to see it happen. Part of that process is going to involve getting more people excited about playing guitar, which means I need to play more music and talk more about it. That sounds like pretty good motivation to get off my backside and write more, don’t you think?
I’ve been doing a number of private events at senior living communities around the Portland area, and recently did a casual set at Insomnia Coffee in Hillsboro. My media kits are finally finished and I will be hitting the streets right after the holidays trying to hustle more gigs in public locations. Watch the calendar for the latest updates.
I’ve been writing some blog posts, if you can believe that. One is the first in a series of ‘myth busting’ articles and is about The 4-Word Curse. The other is an article for the Bandmakers site and is all about Talking To The Audience.
I am doing events every Wednesday evening through the Westside Musicians meetup group, including two jams and at least one informational topic each month. I’m also putting the finishing touches on a proposal to teach my Survival Guitar class at Portland Community College, hopefully they will like it and add it to their community education offerings.
Bandmakers has been going strong, we’ve just completed our 7th session and are getting ready to begin Winter term, where we’ll be adding the Bandmakers Advanced program. This new class is designed for more experienced musicians who are looking to expand and improve their skills in arranging, stagecraft, and performance. The next term begins on January 2nd, so there’s still time to sign up!
Thanks as always for your support and patience. I am looking forward to being much more communicative in the coming year. Until then, happy holidays to all!
Walk gently & keep listening…