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Murph
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I just retired. So, you'd think I'd have some time. It works just the opposite.

My old duo partner ran off with a rock band a while back. I don't really like performing solo. I mean, I've been on stages all my life, and it's not a "phobia" or anything, I've done it often enough, I simply don't like it. I prefer someone to "bounce off of", interact with and such.

I don't like busking alone either, although I enjoy it otherwise, in the right setting.

I've recently hooked up with some other people via some jams, and we're concentrating more on old timey stuff, far less original, even tip toeing into some bluegrass which is harder than you might think.

Early stages, nothing for sure, but it's something.

I'm still writing, just not as much and have original stuff on my Youtube channel.  Ben Dummitt - YouTube

I'm sure I'll land in a performing situation again as it's a part of me and I love it, but to at least get to jam with others is important as well.

What ya'll up to lately?

 

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I have not been in a "performing" situation since the 1970s when I had my acoustic blues band Southern Can, was sitting in with a journeyman blues rock band, and was the "house band" for a local coffee shop .  But I had also figured out the way to keep it fun was to not take money.  While I was paid to run the folk music program at an arts center, I only played in front of others for free food.  

These days I do join up with a guy who owns a music store.  We work together pretty well.  While we occasionally bring in somebody to play harp or even some brass nothing permanent has come of it.  He mostly wants to get something going where his students can get the hang of playing music with others.

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I'm still videoing songs for my grandkids.

My BIL who I used to get with every few months, moved away, (only like 90 miles....but I don't see him often).

Would like to get with some players.... I ALWAYS learn stuff when I play with   others.....and I know I tend to speed up on songs when I play alone, (even with  an electronic drum beat).... so I'd really like to get back with others now that I'm retired.

 

 

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Just playing my guitars made in Nazaeth. Trying to learn If I Had A Boat by Lyle and Pink Moon by Nick. I now work at the Carolina Opry in SC. I get to go to all the shows for free weather they are the Oprys shows or the Big Acts that play there. Next weekend Blues Traveler are playing. I am either scanning tix or ushering, then watch the rest of the show. I’ll only miss about 15 min total of the show.

Edited by Sgt. Pepper
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A few irons in the fire

been in an originals band for a long time, same guys, a few players changed out over the years, but the core is the same.  My wifes brothers both play and we've pulled them in.  Mostly we have fun, write and record.  there's 6 songs we're inching toward the finish line on.

another band is a 3 piece doing classic rock stuff,  and just as we were closing in on being gig ready after almost a a 2 year covid pause, the drummer for that project is apparently setting to move to North Carolina now.   A shame really Drummer sings, as do I and Bass player,  some decent 3 parts we'd working into the mix.  it was fun.   I have a drummer to switch in, not sure if the Bass player has the gas in his tank to reset.

I'm the guitarist in the rythm section for an orchestra/chorale that does concerts 2 or 3 times a year.  about 15 to 20 pieces depending on the show, along with the Chorale which at one point was like 60 voices strong,  down quite a bit for this years series.  I think about 30 remain.  Covid beat the heck out of that one.  Lots of people afraid to do anything but get food once or twice a week 

I also work with our parish music director on Sundays and other things going on at the church.  He's really good.!  We lost the choir, which was pretty decent so now it's just Gutiar, Piano and a cantor.  We do a number of instrumental pieces.  it's cool.

The last iron is an occasional acoustic thing I do solo.  Have a few gigs coming up for that

 

Oh and I'm teaching a few people one family the other a friend.  Not charging em right now  but it is another hit on the free time

 

Edited by kidblast
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New job. Less free time. Less music (sad). Going to Copenhagen in early June to see one of my kids (not sad). Need to lose weight. Bought a Guild D20. So now I have a Taylor AD17, Gibson J45-TV, Martin D15m, and a Guild D20. The Guild and Taylor are fantastic. You just can’t thrash the Taylor, which I don’t do generally anyways.

Edited by Salfromchatham
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19 minutes ago, Salfromchatham said:

New job. Less free time. Less music (sad). Going to Copenhagen in early June to see one of my kids (not sad). Need to lose weight. Bought a Guild. So now I have a Taylor, Gibson, Martin, and a Guild. Kewl!

What Guild did you get. I had a JF-30. Copenhagen is gonna be killer.

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Still doing my long time weekly Gusto coffeehouse gig (over 11 years now).  I love the place.  I’ll also start playing at their new location this summer when it opens.  Also, got an email on Wednesday from Top Hat Winery.  They want to start-up their “open mic” again on the first Friday in June.  They’re thinking of doing it every week or twice a month.   Before the pandemic crap I did Caribou Coffee every Friday afternoon, but they still don’t know what they’re going to do.  There are several coffeehouses within around 10 miles of me and  i’ve thought about getting another gig, but sometimes I’m too lazy………. I just enjoy playing.  I like the people and the atmosphere.  I see people that know me from Gusto’s at Costco’s and Sam’s and shopping centers.  . Everyone is so damn friendly (and the college girls are gorgeous).   I’ve got a great wife and family, sweet guitars, good friends, sweet dogs, and I’m having a lot of fun for a soon-to-be 3/4 century old dude.

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I’ve been playing in a British Invasion Cover Band called “The Fab-Tones” for the past 6 years.. I posted a YouTube performance on that other Thread.. Fun Band..

My brother & I have our other long time Band “The Larson Brothers Band”.. We’ve been playing together most of our lives.. We’re just completing our fourth Album of all Original Songs written by him & I.. We’re thinking of ways to get Gigs to perform & perform our new Album after it’s finished, released, available in CD & downloads on ITunes etc.… More complex with unheard unknown Original Songs.. Would love to hear some ideas..

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Still writing and still trying to figure out why. Just read Mary Gautier’s excellent book, “Saved By a Song,” and realizing I have zero childhood trauma to turn into songs. I grew up in a small town in the corn and soybean fields of East Central Illinois. It was Mayberry and I had normal, responsible and sober parents. My only childhood trauma was being lousy in Pony League. I think I had one hit in my entire career, and it was probably scored as an error. I probably got on by walks a couple of times. Otherwise, the basepaths might as well have been the lunar surface as far as I was concerned.

We’ve now settled in Manchester, UK, and I’m trying to hit some open mics and figure out what’s what and who’s who in the local music scene. In the past seven years, we’ve lived in Kuwait, Cyprus, England, Illinois and now England again. That means as soon as I get somewhere and figure where to gig, who I need to know, who to avoid, etc., it’s time to move on. Plus, Kuwait and Cyprus weren’t really hip to Americana music, although I had an easier time of it in Kuwait despite the institutional roadblocks to gigging. (For example, EVERY musical performance requires a government permit.)

Cyprus was rich with music — if you played Greek folk songs or did Ed Sheeran covers. Otherwise, they had little interest in hearing you. At one coffeehouse I played — and filled — I went up to the owner afterwards and said I’d be in touch about booking a follow-up gig. He said not to bother because he considered the night a “one-off” show. Did I mention I filled the place with paying customers?

At least there’s a healthy Americana and folk scene in Manchester and the UK. I just need to figure out how to break into it.

Edited by dhanners623
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I just watched Sheryl Crows recent Documentary. She kept referring to serious Song Writing vs the Songs she wrote that are huge Commercial Hit Songs… Which IMO happen to be great… Her serious songs deal with her Depression, periods of Suicidal thoughts & failed relationships… Etc…

I think those are the ones that are easier to write.. Just read a depressing Book, or se a depressing Movie or  listen to some of your friends depressing stories! Plenty of depressing stuff to write about..

It’s not the first time I’ve thought this but hasn’t that stuff been done to F’n Death!!!! Do we really need more???

Then I happened to hear Sheryl’s song “All I Wanna Do Is Have Some Fun” & thought, Yeah,  me too! Those Songs are fewer & farther between… I think they are the hard ones to write… In fact, IMO, I’m not so sure that most of those Songs were Gifts from out there that Songwriters pretty were conduits for them to get thru to this Dimension.. Yeah, it sounds weird.. But, how many times have you heard about the Songs that were written in 5 minutes, that just came out of the Blue?

Be grateful for your blessed life & write about it..  Share some Good Stuff! Maybe some humor too… Entertain!

 

 

 

Edited by Larsongs
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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, dhanners623 said:

Still writing and still trying to figure out why. 

I think we need to, and it's why we do. None of my stuff is about trauma either, it's mostly with a humorous edge or about stuff.

My first project (1998) came after the great "digital money grab" so even with hundreds of thousands of plays, there's still no money, unlike the old days when you got sales and author royalties.

Gillian Welch wrote the BEST SONG EVER about this with the brilliant line

"Someone hit the big score, they figured it out, we were gonna do it anyway, even if it doesn't pay"

 

 

Edited by Murph
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1 hour ago, Murph said:

I think we need to, and it's why we do. None of my stuff is about trauma either, it's mostly with a humorous edge or about stuff.

My first project (1998) came after the great "digital money grab" so even with hundreds of thousands of plays, there's still no money like the old days when you got sales and author royalties.

Gillian Welch wrote the BEST SONG EVER about this with the brilliant line

"Someone hit the big score, they figured it out, we were gonna do it anyway, even if it doesn't pay"

 

 

I get the need to write; it is what writers do. And I gave up the profit motive when it comes to music long ago. But I’m tired of being a tree falling in an unpopulated forest. When I did my most recent full-length record in 2013, I only had 250 copies made. I still have some, and most of the ones that are out there in the world are the ones I gave away.

I stick songs on YouTube and nobody listens. My most-listened-to song on YouTube, with 5.3K views, is a cover of Ray Hubbard’s “Dallas After Midnight.” I posted a link to a song here (“The Viking”) and the counter thingie says 87 people clicked on the post; the video itself has a grand total of four views, and a couple of those are mine.

So…. A reasonable person has to wonder if my problem is a) a failure to find my niche and market or, b) accept the inescapable fact people aren’t listening because I lack talent and I’m not offering them anything with any substance. (You could shorten that sentence to, “I either haven’t found my audience, or I suck.”) I am increasingly coming to the conclusion I suck. The stuff I write is crap. I may enjoy playing for people, but they don’t enjoy listening. So why do I still write and try to perform? I have no earthly idea.

It’s not like I wasn’t warned. When I released a CD in 2010 and sent it out for review, the critic at the Duluth (MN) News Tribune (I played gigs in the city now and then) reviewed it. The headline said the record was, “rough, awkward and not that good.” The reviewer piled on from there, saying my CD was “perhaps the worst” record he’d listened to in the past five years.

And I don’t mean to sound whiny. One of the things that comes with age is coming to accept your many limitations. 

Edited by dhanners623
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Hey Joe… great on the gigs. 
 

dhanners… that was a pretty honest post. The only YouTube videos I make that get views are ones where I am reviewing a guitar or two. You are not alone.

but check it out. We still can make it.  Everyone in this thread… we make an acoustic version of Spinal Tap.  Or we could all die in a bizarre gardening accident.

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4 hours ago, Salfromchatham said:

Hey Joe… great on the gigs. 
 

dhanners… that was a pretty honest post. The only YouTube videos I make that get views are ones where I am reviewing a guitar or two. You are not alone.

but check it out. We still can make it.  Everyone in this thread… we make an acoustic version of Spinal Tap.  Or we could all die in a bizarre gardening accident.

There making a Spinal Tap 2. Please don’t F this up guys. I can see no good coming from it. Sequels usually do not fare well.

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Sunday, Blues Traveler are playing the theater I work at. It’s a 2000 seat venue. I’m doing security. Which basically means watch their gear, and make sure no one gets backstage that’s not supposed to. Also get anyone off stage that can just basically walk up 4 steps, that are in an arc that stretches about 50 feet, at the front of the stage. I’m certainly not going to lay my hands on anyone as I have no badge, nor do I need a lawsuit for illegally touching anyone. Can’t wait to hear 4000 harmonica notes. When it’s used sparingly its fine, but John goes more than overboard. 

Edited by Sgt. Pepper
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9 hours ago, Sgt. Pepper said:

 a lawsuit for illegally touching anyone. 

Are those even a thing?

I've never heard of one.

I wouldn't think Blues Traveler would have throngs of teeny boppers rushing the stage anyhow. You're probably good.

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