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Thursday, June 28, 2012

July: Back home from the road

After crisscossing much of the country from April through June...

... sharing music and stories with old friends and new, I'm very glad to be home!  

(Here is a photo from my concert at Mt. Zwingli UCC Church in Wadsworth, Ohio, taken by Jan Hammond.)

      The frightening part of the journey was the last few days that were undertaken as the High Park Fire in Colorado was extending its reach toward Fort Collins. Anxiously checking the internet when the local radio station lost its transmission tower; providing news to my loved ones; It was a very surreal experience to drive into town, toward a burning fire with 9 different fingers of smoky plume working their way down the foothills toward the western edge of town, while my brain was trying to turn on the "flight" module.

      Thankfully, our town has been spared (so far) and we continue to give thanks, moment by moment, to all of the local, county, state and federal government people whose training and commitment guide the bravery and steadfastness of those whose boots are on the ground digging, trimming, cutting, dropping water and fire retardant, guarding and evacuating people.


     And this fire is only one of many in our extremely DRY state.   The Red Cross welcomes all contributions to help those displaced by these disasters.  The harder work comes next as families rebuild or decide to re-locate.  


     My song, Rock on Rock, was originally inspired by people I met in Mexico City who rebuilt their homes after a massive earthquake in the early 1980s.  It continues to find relevance for many people in different settings.  This link takes you to my website where you can hear it, read the lyrics (and download it, if you wish.)  I'm continuing to give a donation to Peace Lutheran Church in Joplin, Missouri from all sales of this song and its related CD and DVD to help in their rebuilding efforts

following the April 2011 tornado that devastated their town.

Someone reminded me of the words

of an old bluesman:  

"You can't make depression go away, but singing can send it to the far corners of the room." 


So, let's keep singing!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Concert Slide Show

Jan Hammond set up an afternoon of workshops and an evening concert at her church, Mt. Zwingli UCC in Wadsworth, OH and sent me these photos afterward.  I put them together in this slideshow with a musical track from my 5 song Kids EP (Mr. Steve's Folk Music for Little Folks).

After playing Amazing Grace on my Galax dulcimer as an audience sing-a-long several people noticed a spectacularly-timed sunset rainbow! (Featuring Galax Dulcimer built by Ben Seymour, Dulci-bro by Don Neuhauser, Didjeridoo from Australia, hammered dulcimer by Nicholas Blanton, guitar by Huss & Dalton.)

Monday, June 11, 2012

Stevens County Library Hugoton, KS

After driving through parts of Southwestern Colorado for the first time as I began my May-June 2012 tour,  I arrived in the Natural Gas Capital of the world on Tuesday and was delighted to find that my housing was booked into a Bed and Breakfast with a hammered dulcimer shape carved in its stone sign!

The Stevens County Library was the venue for the concert, booked by Unbound Booking.

Because I arrived early, I was able to visit the very impressive local museum, where I was informed that I was visiting the two best features of the town today!

Hugoton, county seat of Stevens County, (a story which is interesting in its own right!)  had a massive natural gas boom in the 1920s, which paralled a similar boom in my hometown of Pemberville, Ohio.  The comparisons between this town and the one of my birth and rearing were very uncanny, even though my hometown is about a 1/3 the size of this one.

This was my first gig booked by Unbound Booking and was great fun.

Even MORE fun was when Eunice, the librarian, brought out her dulcimers made by a builder in Liberal, Kansas in the 1990s!