Rerouting

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It’s springtime in Seattle. One day we’re all out walking around Green Lake in t-shirts and shades, and the next we’re soaked and shivering in our winter coats. It’s a fickle season, but I find the variety invigorating.

Then there’s all the flowers. I know they show up every year, but I’m never fully prepared. Ribbons of purple and white paint the hillsides. Gardens explode with color. Neighborhood walks are suddenly spectacular.

Add to all of this the knowledge that these precious warm sunshiny days and the long-lingering light are only promises of summer’s nearing magic, and it really gets exciting. We’re on our way, folks!

But enough rhapsodizing. We’ve got business to attend to.

A Show in Seattle! Tuesday, April 23rd at 8 pm @ The Sunset Tavern

I’m thrilled to be opening for Florence Wiley and The Arnolds at a great Seattle venue. My set begins at 8. I’ll be singing and playing keys on my original tunes, joined by bassist Ryan Donnelly and drummer William Mapp. These guys have amazing energy. Let’s have some fun. Check out the Facebook event page for more info. $10 tickets.

I submitted a video to NPR’s Tiny Desk Contest! Click here to watch!

In case you are unfamiliar, NPR Tiny Desk Concerts (available on YouTube—here’s my favorite) feature some of the finest musicians in the world, be they legendary or fresh on the scene. It’s long been an ambition of mine to make it to the Tiny Desk. This contest is a way to leapfrog the in-between years of making a name for yourself, to go straight from obscurity to the limelight.

Alas, this is not a voting contest, so there’s no way to directly support my chances. But if you dig the video, please share it around. That really does go a long way. And take a minute to subscribe to my YouTube channel while you’re at it. Thanks!

By the way, this was the quick-edit video we made specifically for the contest. There’s a lot more material coming out of this shoot. Stay tuned!

Rerouting

There’s an old Yiddish expression I’ve always loved: “We make plans, and God laughs.” It’s a humbling reminder that so much is outside our control, that life can and will surprise us.

As you know if you read my last email, I was planning to drive to Maine, play shows along the way, and spend the summer with my sweetheart, wandering until we landed somewhere. Gigs were scheduled, departure was looming… but then my body began to rebel.

I have Crohn’s Disease, and every so often I have to deal with a flare-up. The stress of jumping into the unknown can exacerbate the symptoms. At times like these, I need to rest and exercise as much as I can, and be very careful about what I’m putting in my body. Long days in the car are not well-suited to such efforts.

So we made the tough decision to reroute. Rather than me going out east for the summer, Erin will come to Seattle. This will allow us to be somewhere stable where I can focus on getting healthy. We’ll be able to take our time figuring out what’s next. Sometimes what we all need is a little time. Slow down, reset, evaluate, and then proceed.

It’s not a bad situation. We’re excited to be in the Northwest at a beautiful time of year. We love it here! We’re excited to be near family and friends. I’m excited to play a bunch more shows this summer, and (hopefully) to see you at some of them!

Besides, the wandering isn’t done. It’s just on hold for the moment.

So my health isn’t where I’d like it to be. So we had to change plans. I’m practicing staying focused on the bounty of my good fortune. I get to make music all the time. I have a strong and extensive community, here in the Northwest and beyond. I have an amazing partner who is ready to face life’s challenges with me.

Life is great. I am so grateful for all that I have. That includes you! Thank you, friends, for being here with me.

As always, I’d love to hear from you. Anything you’d like to share! But here’s something specific you can help me with: I’m in a phase of discovering and learning new music, and beginning to fill in the huge gaps in my knowledge and repertoire. What can you not stop listening to these days? Who should be on my radar? I’m not only looking for the hidden gems here. There are lots of big names I’m barely familiar with. Nothing is too obvious or too obscure. Send me your playlist!