Hey y’all, I’m coming to you from the beautiful Grande Ronde Valley wherein sits the town of my birth and youth, La Grande, Oregon. This weekend is a family visit to my parents’ place, where my folks have lived for a good long while, and to attend a couple of significant family events. My little bro’ Joe came too for this Saturday and Sunday adventure. It is a 3+ hour drive and we had beautiful clear, calm weather for it. Along the way we were thrilled to see a whole bunch of bighorn sheep feeding just up the hill from the freeway between Biggs and Arlington. We must have seen at least 60 all told!
Last night, after we got to town and had dinner with Dad and Mon, Joe and I and my Mom went to Lyle Schwartz Theatre at Eastern Oregon University here in La Grande, where Joe’s daughter, my niece Megan, had one of the lead roles in the play “Independence,” a theatre department senior project. Afterwards we joined the cast and friends for the after party (last night was the final performance). They did a great job, throwing themselves into their roles with enthusiasm and aplomb and we had a great time visiting with them after.
This morning we will be going to support my Mom, who has provided music at her church for 40 years. The service will be honoring her so we will enjoy being a part of it and seeing her receive the plaudits she so richly deserves.
After that I am taking my family to lunch to celebrate multiple birthdays that have occurred over the last couple of months that I haven’t been here to enjoy with them. That will be a hoot.
Somewhere along the way, before we head back to our homes in the Gorge, I will arrange to meet, at least briefly, with my friend and amazing musician Matt Cooper to pass along some copies of the CD he and I are putting out soon to confirm if the song order is good before putting the package together officially.
It’s always nice to get back to where I grew up here and reconnecting with family and all, and this trip is proving to be no exception.
Later this week, I have some shows.
Usually I play Tarwater Tavern in White Salmon every Tuesday, 5:30-7:30, but this week that’s not going to work out. I will be back at that on the 20th.
Several days ago I began a more rigorous practice schedule to prepare for Saturday the 17th, when I will be playing to 3 hour solo gigs back to back, first at Jacob Williams Winery in Wishram, WA from 1 to 4 pm, then Rivertap Pub and Restaurant in The Dalles from 6 to 9. That’s going to be very demanding physically, so I am trying hard to get in 2 to 3 hours a day of good, solid, physical practice so that my fingers are not destroyed in the process of playing the 6 hours on Saturday. So far I’m doing pretty well and anticipate being in good enough shape to play my best and enjoy doing it.
As a final note, I am really enjoying creating some abstract art these days! Right now you can see some of my creations on my Instagram site, and soon I will have my storefront going here on my own website.
Well, that’s all for now. Since I discontinued my Facebook presence I guess this blog will be as good a way as any to stay in touch, so come back often, and soon, and comment, and stay in touch my friends!