Hi folks. 2011 was quite a year for us. The one-year anniversary of our fire was on July 21st. It was interesting looking back on the year. Though it was a devastating loss, the thing we reflected on most was the tremendous amount of kindness and support we received from so many people in our community and region. We are still overwhelmed and humbled by the experience of it all. We are so thankful to one and all.
We are happy to say we moved in to our new house on December 18th. We had a great Christmas here and are settling into this wonderful space. My daughter Meadow Merry and her husband Ray came up from Ithaca to help us move stuff in. My friend Johnny Charmella also gave a helping hand. It was fun, and many hands make light work. Our contractor Randy Schrader and his crew are awesome, and worked hard to get the house up and us in before the holidays. I would recommend those guys to anyone. Awesome work ethic and quality work, and they are a great bunch of Adirondack guys. Also, let me offer a special thank you to Tracy Schrader for the work she did on the house.
On the music end of things, I have two CDs to sell at this point: Pieces of the Past and Wayward Son. Pieces of the Past is being well received. My good friend Mark Elliott came up with the idea of putting together a CD with a collection of 18 songs from my CD inventory lost in the fire. It was a cool idea, and less overwhelming than the option of replacing all my CDs. Mark mastered and sequenced the CD for me for free. I have such awesome friends. The graphic wizards, Shaun Heffernan and Amanda Palmer, put together a great design for me, and folks say they love the CD. But with the questions about why certain songs were not chosen for this project, I can see a CD in the future called More Pieces of the Past. Last winter I got my studio gear back up and running in a back room of the apartment we were living in. It was there that I recorded my new CD, Wayward Son. It is the first production from my own studio with me wearing both the artist and producer/engineer hats. It took some finesse to get the tracks recorded properly, between the dogs howling, snow plows roaring by and the sump pump going on in the wet spring. Even with all that, I am very pleased with how Wayward Son came out. My sweet daughter Meadow sings harmony on four of the songs. I called on Mark Elliott for mastering and his cool harmonies. My old friend in Nashville, Jim Schacer, plays awesome lead parts on acoustic guitar, mandolin, and dobro. My friend Celia Evans (who is recording her next CD with me here in my studio) sings a cool harmony for me on a song called Twice the Time, and my neighbor, Bill Chamberland, adds sweet mandolin on that song. I salvaged one song from the recordings I lost in the fire and that one, The Wolf the Hawk and the Waterfall, has an awesome flute part played by local musician extraordinaire, Sue Grimm. I also called on Mike Kennedy, a friend from my old band, Home Comfort, to add some cool electric guitar. Folks say they are really enjoying Wayward Son.
Although I have no physical CDs of my other 13 recordings to sell, you can download all of them either as single songs or as full CDs from the music players on the home page and on the CD page.
As always, I am so thankful for you folks who come to my concerts, buy my CDs and support my music habit. I hope all is well in your world and that our paths cross in the not too distant future. Love to all from here in my mountains.
Did you miss the last journal entry? Read it here, in the Journal archive.