Monday, April 25, 2011

Poster drawn by Chris Engle

Spring Tour Reflection

Spring is an excellent time of year to leave behind the "mud" season New England is stuck in and take in all the beauty and smells of Virginia, North Carolina Tennessee and even Pennsylvania in the springtime. The warm air comes sooner. I wished I packed sandles. We got to "pollinate" some ideas and new music with bugs and bees working hard to do the same right alongside us.

We began our tour in the company of a wonderful family who run Gypsy Joint in Great Barrington, MA. Their menu offers unique and homemade foods vegetarian and otherwise for all tastes. Family owned and operated with the youngsters running around underfoot. We were well received by a mixed audience which included adults and children. Then we rambled on to the Red and White Cafe in DeRuyter, NY. This small town in the Adirondack region hasn't changed much since the 50's. Owner operator Chris strives to preserve what's worth preserving by operating the Red and White out of the restored former general store of DeRuyter. Great Food and Coffee and occasional live music lure in folks from town. In homage to the days weather we played our best rainy day songs (including our version of Leadbelly's "Lotta Rain"). Our audience seemed entertained by Mark's dry wit.

In Scottdale, PA we found some excellent company at a new venue called The Table. Though usually closed on Sundays they hosted our show anyways with an appreciative audience. We met several active members of the community including Phil Haddad who co Authored a book offering quotes from the political career of Ron Paul with local writer Roger Marsh. Marsh is also main contributor for and filmed an independant Film entitled "Mars Attacks Mt. Pleasant" in Scottdale, Pa utilizing many local residents as the cast and crew. We were given a copy of this film but have not yet been able to watch it. Many thanks to our friend Chris Engle for hosting us , setting up this show and drawing up a wonderful poster of our likenesses.

We spent a few days in beautiful Northern Virginia recharging and exploring. We were fetured on WNRN in Charlottesville, VA Acoustic Sunrise on April 20. Then headed down to Johnson City, TN for a show at Acoustic Coffehouse. Bluegrass musicians are so common down here you can even find them pickin' on a song in the Laundromat.

Through some strange cosmic coincidence on April 21rst (4-21) we headed off to Davidson, NC on route 421. We spent the day enjoying a local park where the pond was brimming with Turtles, Ducks, Geese and huge Carp. We had some amazingly good Pizza at an old auto garage converted into a restaurant called Fuel. Concluding the evening we got to perform outside at Summit Coffee with two of the areas most talented songwriters. Chuck Johnson "The Charlie Horse" and our host Rob McHale. Rob hosts a songwriters showcase at Summit every month. We got to listen to both of their records in our travels and each CD reinforces what great songwriters these two guys are. We got to spend some extra time with Rob McHale and find out that many of songs are references to area landmarks or local historic places.

Then we returned to one of our favorite venues The White Hart. Every time we visit we notice that this place has grown and improved. The conversations are always so good that we find it hard to leave.

Finally we concluded our Spring tour at the Conwego Cafe in Elizabethtown, PA. We were received warmly by owner/operator Marti who accompanied our performance beautifully on her oboe. This cafe is housed is a beautiful 1870's Victorian home with very ornate and interesting features. Performing from the turreted corner of the front room we were very pleased with the wonderful acoustic offerings of the high ceilings and old hard plaster walls. The cafe website has some interesting history on the home. We also had the pleasure of meeting Michelle and Paul from the band Shipwrecks who provided us with some great hospitality. Elizabethtown happens to be nestled right in between the M&M Mars candy Factory and Hershey, PA so it smells of chocolate all the time.

Tours always leave us feeling re-energized to continue to reach out to people in our own way. We met many great new friends during this trip and felt that many of these performances were just where we should have been at the time. The kindness and hospitality of strangers and folks you have just met renews our sense in the goodness of humanity. Thank you to all those who helped us along our way. We will be posting more pictures and video as they come to us. Thank you for being part of our journey.