Wow! 2023 is coming to an end! What a wild and fun ride it’s been. I started the year deciding that I wanted to go out and play some gigs to support my new album, “Horseshoes and Hand Grenades.” I thought maybe I’d do that solo or perhaps as a duo. In an amazing series of events and transpiring over a few weeks, I found myself with a full band and starting working hard to book gigs. We started as a quintet, but very quickly we were down to 4-myself, Rick King on drums, Rickly Fishman on bass, and Steve Lussie on lead guitar and mandolin. It’s been an honor and a pleasure making music with these fine gentlemen and musicians!
Between February and December I played 36 shows at 21 different venues. We played as a full band, a trio, a duo, and myself solo. We traveled all over Northern California up to Napa and Sebastopol, down to Loma Mar making stops all in between in cities such as San Francisco, Livermore, Hayward, Half Moon Bay, Pacifica, Richmond, Menlo Park, and of course my hometown of Berkeley. When people were in the room, we received an amazing response to our music from audiences, making new friends, and picking up new fans. Rick’s wife Rose and Ricky’s wife Cindy have been steadfast attending many shows making us feel at home and giving us some perspective on our growth and performances. Two of my oldest and best friends have helped us tremendously. Mitch Wilks has used his artistic wizardry to create unique and incredible poster art for each gig, while Alan Zucker has continued to be my personal photographer capturing some great moments along the ride and creating some super cool and creative images including our holiday greeting above.
While we started off focusing on my new album, along the way I wrote an astonishing 20 new songs with 15 of them finding their way into live performances. It has warmed my heart and blown me away the way audiences have responded to this new music. We’ve played cover songs from some of my favorite songwriters, learning new songs along the way to expand our repertoire to keep things fresh and broaden our appeal.
2024 promises to be another exciting year. We’re already booked solid in January and most of February with March beginning to take shape. We’re back at some of our favorite venues and adding some exciting new ones to the rotation. I’m continuing to write new material and we hope somehow to get a few songs recorded either live or in the studio sometime next year. We plan to be super busy, especially during the good weather months, hoping to get outside and play all kinds of fairs, festivals, and outdoor venues. We hope to see you at one or more of these gigs!
At this joyous time of the year I want to thank each and every one of you who streamed a song, watched a video, followed me on social media, or came to a gig. Maybe you did all of those things…in that case…many,many thanks! My Christmas wish is to bump up those numbers on social media-especially YouTube and Instagram followers…so letting your friends and family members know about my music would be a great help. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Festivus…or no holiday at all….I want to wish you all a joyous and happy holiday season and a most peaceful new year. May all of your wishes come true, and may you spend quality time surrounded by those you love.
Thanks again for all of your support!