We had a fantastic weekend in Arlington, Virginia, playing for a packed house at the home of Lisa Cherkasky. I was joined in performance by my buddies from the Bacon Brothers Band, in town to play with BB at the wonderful Birchmere, as well as singer Angela Reed. All evening Friday, enjoying the Bacon Brothers show at the Birch, Lisa continued to check her phone, and by night’s end we were sold out. It was a wonderful afternoon of music and pie, not to mention full out discussions of Steve Earle’s marriage history, secret songs about secret love affairs, and alien bugs crawling in the ears of United States Senators. A magical time. Videos are out there, look on our FB page!
See you at Cowgirl on August 29th for a Songwriters In The Round hosted by the outrageously talented and prolific Emily Duff!
House Concert In Arlington, Virginia
If you’re in the DC area, I’ll be doing a house concert in Arlington, Virgina on July 29th with some of my buddies from the Bacon Brothers Band. This concert series is run by my oldest friend, Lisa Cherkasky, a woman of many talents (you’ve GOT to check out her sandwich blog http://www.midnightsnack.com). Lisa has a beautiful home and there will be pie like you’ve never experienced in your life. Come see us at the house concert and be sure to get to the Bacons’ gig at the Birchmere on July 28/29/30. I know Kevin and Michael are pumped for a big weekend in DC.
Charting on Americana Radio!
I am over the moon to report that Americana and Folk radio have embraced our record You See This River to the point where we have charted at #19 on Airplay, and #30 on the Artist chart. For a project that has never before been on the radar of these DJs and fans, this is a remarkable event and I am beyond grateful to the independent folks in this genre who are ready to recognize and play new music they love. Please write to me here (firstname.lastname@example.org) and say hello if you would like to request we send the record to any other stations throughout the country, or if you are a DJ who is interested in a phone interview or in-studio event. Requests for plays to these independent stations are taken seriously, so if you have a favorite station (NYC fans…that call to WFUV couldn’t hurt!) please pick up that cellphone and request a song be played. Finally, if you have ideas for shows for next year, including a house concert near you, I’d love to hear from you.
Soon I will begin archiving radio interviews on this site. These DJ’s I’ve been speaking with are really remarkable – knowledgeable and inspiring.
June 12, 2017 @ Rockwood Music Hall
We played our last NYC show at Rockwood Music Hall before taking a summer break. You guys really showed up for us once again. We videotaped, so bear in mind I have every crazy outburst from each and every one of you! What I love is that every show with this project is a community gathering. It’s as if we’re in the town square, playing music, talking town gossip (no mean girls allowed, of course!) and exchanging love, solace where needed, and (let’s face it, much-needed) hope for the future. (Lorelei and Rory would fit right in. All GG folks please identify yourselves!) Joining me in the Blue Room on June 12th were Larry Saltzman on guitar, Jeremy Beck on piano and vocals, Richard Hammond on bass, Lisa Gutkin on fiddle, Angela Reed on vocals, Gary Schreiner on harmonica, and Lisa Brigantino on mandolin, who was supposed to learn 3 songs and basically learned the set. Lisa B, you are amazing! Such a gathering of immensely talented people, committed to making good honest music. Thank you to Harold Erkins for archiving on video.
Radio Launch/Spring Shows
Our radio launch begins Memorial Day weekend. If you have any stations you would love us to include, let us know!
I am playing a mini set at the infamous Radigan Roundup in Brooklyn (8th Avenue and 12th St) on Sunday May 21st – a wonderful shared night, hosted by – of course – the indomitable Terry Radigan. The night starts at 7:30. Come on out and hang with us – burgers and beer and fellowship! I’ll be joined (so far) by Jeremy Beck on accordion/vocals and Angela Reed on vocals.
And a head’s up that in June we will play our last Rockwood Music Hall show of the season. June 12th on Stage 3, 7pm show. My Blue Room cohorts for the evening are (so far) John Putnam (guitar, dobro), Jeremy Beck (piano, vocals), Lisa Nutkin (fiddle, mandolin), Richard Hammond (bass), and Angela Reed (vocals). We’re expected a few juicy additions to that list, and I know it will be a joyous night of music and community. And that hang upstairs at the Rockwood after the show is one of the many reasons it is a beautiful venue.
Radio airplay launch, gig April 23rd
You See This River will soon have a radio airplay launch, and keep a lookout for more local gigs as well as a little traveling. Thank you all once again for supporting the record and our CD launch event. If you haven’t noticed, the CD can be ordered here on our home page, or download tracks from CD Baby and Itunes. We are also streaming on Spotify. I have the pennies in royalties to prove it. So hey, supporters of independent music! Order your very own copy to travel through the day with.
On another note, the amazing Diane Garisto is bringing her Stoned Soul Picnic to City Winery NYC on April 23rd! Singing the stunning music of her former boss, Laura Nyro. It is a wonderful celebration of Laura’s music and life. Diane’s harmony group consists of myself, Carolee Goodgold, Emily Bindiger, and Margaret Dorn. New York’s finest players in the group: Musical Director Elise Morris, Ira Seigel, Andy Heunerberg, and David Rosenberg. This brunch event starts at 12:30. Come early and order up!
YouSeeThisRiver CD Release
We had an amazing CD Release show at Rockwood 2 on March 27th! What a joy to play with these musicians, and what a thrill to have so many of NYC’s top musicians and singers in the audience. Thank you to all of our community, as well as our friends and family, for being with us to celebrate the release of Janie Barnett and Blue Room’s You See This River. The CD is currently available on CD Baby, and digital downloads (only) also available on Amazon and ITunes. We should be streaming on all the usual sites, but don’t forget to support your favorite artists by purchasing original music! Might I salute, with gratitude and – yup – love – the current participants in Blue Room: Jeremy Beck (piano/vocals), Richard Hammond (bass), John Putnam (guitar/dobro/vocals), Ira Seigel (guitar/mandolin), Bob Mastro (fiddle), Angela Reed (vocals), and guesting with us Bob Merrill (flugelhorn), Rachelle Garniez (accordion), Irwin Fisch (piano), Kenny White (vocals), and Rob Killenberger on sound.
Sold out show at Rockwood
We sold out Rockwood 3! October 17 I had the privilege of performing a set in front of wall to wall folks of good will and commitment to hearing live music! I was joined by Larry Saltzman on guitar/banjo/vocals, Jeremy Beck on piano/vocals, Lisa Gutkin on fiddle/mandolin/vocals, Richard Hammond on bass/vocals, and Angela Reed on vocals. My apologies to those who got turned away at the door! We’ll be back.
Look for the CD of new music coming out early 2017. Thank you so much for showing up and your great reception!
Gigs and recording news
A busy season of writing, recording, and gigging. The amazing Diane Garisto mounted her tribute to her former boss, the legendary Laura Nyro with shows at Cafe Wha and the Highline Ballroom. On stage backing up Diane were Elise Morris, Larry Saltzman, David Rosenberg, Andy Heunerberg, Carolee Goodgold, Emily Bindiger, Margaret Dorn and yours truly. Look for another show in town at Christmastime.
Recording continues on the CD project. Targeting the fall for completion. Look for some live shows coming soon. Larry Saltzman, Richard Hammond, Sammy Merendino, Robin Batteau and JB.
Continuing to work on tracks for the new record. Sessions at Sammy Merendino’s Harlem Parlor Studio with SM on drums and Richard Hammond on upright. Brilliant!
Larry Saltzman and I recently broke out of the ProTools closet to do a mini set at Terry Radigan’s Roundup in Park Slope. Great to get out and play live. We heard some great music that night as well. Carmella Ramsey and Kenny Vaughn played their own mini set. Radian knows how to create a great scene.
Nashville trip last month was terrific. I captured the amazing and graceful Barry Walsh on piano on a new track. Barry and Gretchen Peters graciously welcomed the intrusion into their beautiful home and we captured the moment through the miracle of ProTools on a thumb drive.
My ex Berklee Student Steve Barnett (no relation) had his CD release while I was in Nashville. I was so pleased to be there – his new record – I really can’t stop listening. Tash Ostapovicz and I contributed harmonies to the show.
In January Allison Scola and Joe Ravo aka Villa Palagonia have released their long awaited new recording, beautiful “eclectic acoustic music brushed with hues from Mediterranean folk.” I was pleased to produce the vocals for this collection and it is a gorgeous piece of work.
Thanks to all for your expressed excitement this month, with the posting of songs on Soundcloud. Truth is, the songs were up. But it turns out ITunes Libraries sometimes pull the wrong versions of songs when you upload. So after deleting all those alternate mixes, the right ones are up on Soundcloud, and I decided to announce that fact by posting on Facebook. More music coming soon.
Please check out the amazing new CD by artist Teri Scheinzeit, Choosing Happy. Go go go to find her online at her site or at CD Baby. The songs are beautiful constructions, she is singing herself nutty, and it all sounds heavenly. Basics arranged and played by Tom Prasada-Rao. I had the privilege of finishing production for her here in New York with engineering by the ubiquitous Mark Dann.
Another song being held for pitching by a supervisor through Music X-Ray. Nice to get to yes. Next month it’s off to Florence for a week, songwriting retreat with Gretchen Peters.
Continuing the obsession with stringed instruments and singer-players and all-things Chris Thile. Celebrate Brooklyn managed to draw him back with the stunning Punch Brothers. It was torrential rain that night but we all stayed and they played and played. And then….my girl Amelia Meath, late of Mountain Man, who I’ve known since she was a baby.. She and Nick, her partner in crime in Sylvan Esso, an absolutely blow-out concert. It didn’t rain.
We’re happy to report at Blue Room Songs that several tracks are being held by music supervisors for potential pitches. Nice progress this year in that regard.
More songs, more recording, hoping to book a show or two in the next couple of months. Meanwhile, for all my Brooklyn neighbors, see you at Celebrate Brooklyn. They have booked some amazing music this year, and it continues to be a free event, unless you are inclined to drop some money in the bucket. Nickel Creek in July! See you there.
On the 15th I joined Valerie Ghent at her long-running Songwriters Beat, with artists Moses Patrou, Rhonda Denet, and Judy Kass. The gifted and erudite Irwin Fisch joined me on piano, Margaret Dorn, Diane Garisto, and Kate Barnett on additional vocals. Blessed to make music with these dear people. Switching to piano while The Fisch played my guitar – this must be repeated. Great thanks to all who came to share in the evening.
Tribute to Rob Morseberger and other news
Thanks go to the amazing Janice Pendarvis for leading the panel in Boston at Berklee College of Music in January, after we aired “20 Feet From Stardom.” A fascinating discussion! It was a joy to share this event with Janice, Lisa Fischer, Gabrielle Goodman, Donna McElroy, and Carl Beatty.
On February 20th we gathered to celebrate the music of Rob Morseberger, a singer-songwriter we all held the highest regard. The night of Rob’s music took place at Christopher St Coffeehouse, under the guise of the indomitable Valerie Ghent’s Songwriter’s Beat. I was truly honored to perform Rob’s “Just Like Eating A Stone,” and to play piano behind Ina May Wool, who offered a stunning rendition of Rob’s “Relativity Blues Waltz.”
This month we finished another track, thanks to the magic of laptops and Dropbox. “Walk It Down To You” included my usual home work on keys and vocals, Larry Saltzman added 12-string guitars, bass, and played the cello part on ebow, as Mark was just a bit too busy this month with Paul Simon, and Michael Golub performed his magic at the mixing console.
Happy new year!
Thank God it’s a new year. In the rearview mirror are some health issues to which I am happy to say farewell.
Looking forward to the Berklee College of Music premier of “20 Feet From Stardom.” I will be on the panel with the film’s featured back-up singers. They will tell some road stories. I will tell some session stories. Like that crazy day at Crushing when…
We finished another track for the song-pitch project a couple weeks ago – “River,” with more inspired playing by Larry Saltzman, mixing from Michael Golub. Looking forward to getting Paul Simon sideman Mark Stewart on the next track, on cello, when he returns from the Simon/Sting tour.
Warmest wishes for a rewarding 2014.
I’ve had a great few months working on new tracks for licensing, some of which were begun in the basement of Frank Vilardi‘s home in Montclair. Inspired playing by Frank Vilardi, John Seigler, Irwin Fisch, Larry Saltzman, Mick Hanson, and mixing by Michael Golub. Looking forward to inviting more amazing artists to participate, either through the privacy of their own Pro Tools or here in Brooklyn on my set up.
The NYC community gathered this month to celebrate the life of Babi Floyd, who passed earlier this year. It was a remarkable evening. I didn’t know Babi that well, but through his close friends and loved ones I was so inspired by his personal journey. A reminder of why those rituals are so meaningful.
Music for MoveOn
An amazing time was had by all at the Music For MoveOn event at the Living Room on May 6th. Thanks so much to Jennifer at the Living Room for allowing me to host this great fundraising night of music, and thank you to the acts who gave their time and music: Jon Pousette-Dart, Buskin and Batteau, Kati Mac, and The Mar-Tays. Thank you all who came out. It was wonderful to see you, in spite of my frozen facial nerve!