One Year Down
Seems Like a Minute or Two
This marks my 118th entry as a year ago today I posted my first Substack blog. I wrote that George Orwell identified four motives for writing in which he feels exists in every writer to a certain degree. They are sheer egoism, aesthetic enthusiasm, historical impulse, and political purpose. He also said that good prose is like a windowpane and all writers are vain, selfish, and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives there lies a mystery.
It still holds true…I don’t consider myself a writer per se as I have my hands and mind full from plodding along as a musician and visual artist. I’ve posted about my journey in those arenas along the way to include six parts of my Mosaic Travelogue series and working as a visual artist in the general sense. And regards music, I’ve written about the infamous Sunday Sessions with Kevin Pakulis, and I wrote about the my retirement of the Carnivaleros band and name, which was a mainstay of my life for twenty years.
That said, I do appreciate the number of readers and subscribers that seem to enjoy my ramblings, so I’m going to hitch up the horses and plow and forge ahead with this thing.
Highlights of the year for me are:
1. Neither Connie nor I contracted COVID-19. A few of our friends did get infected but all have recovered.
2. Live music kicked in again in the late spring and we’re cautiously going about our business playing music with our bandmates.
3. I managed to get a very cool gallery in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, interested enough in my work to take me on. Out of the six pieces I’ve sent, four have sold. They crazy in Pittsburgh.
4. We were re-united in person with friends we had not seen for over a year during phase one of the pandemic. And those out-of-towners who braved the skies and highways to venture to Tucson were Michael Borck and Kathy Brannan in from California, Gary Tebor in from LFK, and also from Lawrence were Marty Olson and Steven Fendt. Marty had been wanting to take home my piece titled Madame for some time so we finally made it happen in October!
In the spirit of letting the cat out of the bag I would like to announce here today–on this platform, as Beelzebub as my witness, without reservation, salt tossed over my shoulder, knock on wood, and the creek don’t rise–I’m putting together a new band! I’ll be strapped to an accordion along with my longtime compadre Karl Hoffmann on the bass. Two more good friends are involved in the project–Neil McCallion on guitar and vocals (and he writes a really mean song) and Nick Augustine on the drums (Nick is known for playing bass with Rainer and Das Combo, Rich Hopkins, and Jonathan Richman). We’ll be playing some of my originals, and some of Neil’s, along with covers by Nick Lowe, John Hiatt, Hayes Carll, The LeRoi Brothers, and Buddy Miller, to name a few. But the focus of this band is to have fun and getcher butts on the dance floor.
We have two shows booked at Monterey Court before summer; Thursday, February 24 and Thursday, April 28. The events will be a bit different in that the first long set of the evening will feature other artists playing and re-interpreting songs from my catalogue. Guest artists so far will include Don Armstrong, Petie Ronstadt and Liz Cerepanya, Catherine Zavala and limell’ lawson of M2M, Shanti Foster, Dan Davis, and Tom “Hadji Banjovi" Hodgson. The exact line-up for the first Thursday is to be determined. Karl and I will be backing these artists up along with other special guests. After all that, we let our hair down with the new band and fill the dance floor! Reservations recommended…
Thanks again for reading and see you back here on Friday for the Homestead Dispatch.