As 2015 winds down, I expect that your year was full of challenges, problems, solutions, good days, bad days, old friends, new friends, and family.
My prediction for you: 2016 will present opportunities, questions, answers, joy, difficulty, many laughs, a few tears, and you will figure out how to do some things you have never done before. At least that's how it seems every year goes... onward friends.
Looking back on 2015 I was happy to see a few of my artist buddies release new albums with songs that we co-wrote on them. Here are a few clips from the TV show "Texas Music Scene" that featured my friends and our songs. Click the image below to hear the story and the songs:
The next 30 days, I am playing shows in Austin at Saxon Pub (Wed 12/30 at 9pm, guest of Walt Wilkins), in Dallas at the Downtown Music Series (Sun 1/17 at 6pm), in Galveston at the Old Quarter Acoustic Cafe (Sat 1/23 at 8:30pm), and in Red River New Mexico on 1/28-1/30.
Cheers and safe travels,
Back in May 2014, my frequent songwriting collaborator and old friend Gordy Quist (of the Band of Heathens) and I hosted our first Songfarmer™ workshop.
13 folks from all over the country joined us at beautiful location on Lake Travis, west of Austin. Some were just beginning to write songs and some had been writing songs awhile.
We traded notes in discussions about what works- and doesn't work- for each of us, and ways we've been able to get more and better songs. Judging from our own experience, and from the feedback we got after the weekend, it was a big success, so we hosted another retreat for another group of folks in November 2014.
Even more good things came from that weekend, including the release of a book and an app based on the workshop principles, so we're doing it again- this time on the weekend of November 20-22, starting on Friday night and wrapping up on Sunday morning.
If you are interested in working with a small group to find ways to write more and better songs- and you will write at least one new song- consider joining us for the weekend. Until September 31, the workshop registration is available at an early bird rate.
More reviews on past workshops:
As a participant in the initial Songfarmer retreat with Owen Temple and Gordy Quist, I was extremely pleased with the organization and supportive environment that was created for the weekend.
It was obvious from the start of the retreat, that Owen and Gordy had put in countless hours to create an environment that would cater to the amateur musician, and at the same time, offer professional artists am opportunity to hone their songwriting craft.
It was wonderful to be around so many individuals that shared the same passion for songwriting and music that I possess. Breaking into small groups, and working with established artists was my favorite part of the weekend. Lectures were tremendously informative, and the contents of which were applicable to each artist in attendance.
I would highly recommend this retreat to anyone interested in furthering their abilities as a songwriter. The facilities on the Pedernales River were spectacular and the food was prepared by a local chef, and it goes without saying that I was never left hungry.
I look forward to the next song farmer retreat and late evenings where we assemble in large groups for a song swap forum.
High marks on this one fellas!
I attended the inaugural Songfarmer recently. I highly recommend this for amateurs and professionals alike. Whether you are looking to add some new tools to your songwriting toolbox or you are a pro looking for some fresh insights, this accomplishes both. The two hosts, Gordy Quist and Owen Temple are highly successful and experienced songwriters. Their generosity in sharing their knowledge and skill without reservation was truly humbling. Sharing songs and "laying it out there" can be an intimidating undertaking. Not here, the environment was so supportive, positive and calming it provided a framework everyone felt comfortable in. The location was a beautiful place with a fantastic host/hostess. The food was amazing as well. Professionally catered food served with the same care as the music! The preparation Gordy and Owen put in must have been daunting. It was delivered effortlessly with great humor and passion.
My longtime friend Roger Creager has got a new record coming out next week, and -guess what?- he and his band recorded a killer version of a song I wrote (many moons ago) about a beach bar on South Padre Island. It's available for preorder on iTunes-- official release is next weekend.
Also this week I will be musicking (don't know if this is a word) on Thursday night with Walt Wilkins over in Mount Vernon, Texas at the Cultural Arts Museum, then I'll head up to Tahlequah, Oklahoma for another sure-to-be magnificent edition of Illinois River Jam. Then on Sunday evening, I'll be swapping songs with Bobby Duncan at the Live Oak Music Hall in Fort Worth.
Safe travels and stop by if you are near Mt Vernon, Tahlequah, or Fort Worth over the next few days-