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2016: Buh-bye, you’ve been a terrible guest


Two days left in what’s been a singular year for the Dark Side, Obi-Wan. Who knows what’s ahead? (Though I instinctively duck my head when I say that.) All I know to do is keep plowing. And hope for good. And try for better. To love selflessly. To forgive those I love who are by nature imperfect, just like I am. We do tend to let each other down. But what do you do . . .that’s the nature of truly loving people, isn’t it? It’s not about what you get back; this ain’t a BOGO deal. You love as best you can and speak your truth when you’re able. And hope they’ll do the same. And move forward.

I’m happiest when I’m deeply involved with my writing, so I plan to focus on that more in the new year. As a human being, it seems to be what I do best. So maybe some of my foibles will crawl closer to the light and thereby die of exposure, if I stay with the writing. (Though I’m the last to claim that creative work is any sort of character-building exercise. “I’m not in this for my health,” someone said long ago.) And not just music–my prose and poetry have been too long neglected, except for these occasional posts, and the fairly steady journaling. And I do have a secret interest in photography, because I’m drawn to the nature of it—-the spontaneity, the basic study inherent in deciding what image is important, or beautiful, or striking—-what deserves our attention. Or, at least my attention, in the moment of making. I like to think it also is helpful when thinking about writing images—the physical act of framing an image, of focus—what becomes important, or beautiful, when staring through a lens—and how that can change in an instant. Anyway, I’m sure this all sounds like amateur gobbledygook to you pros out there. But I’m approaching it differently, for personal reasons—from image-making via language toward an actual visual format. It’s sort of image-making training for me. One can only hope that some of the results are useful, constructive, and, occasionally: beautiful.

I need and want to make a new record in 2017. Plans are being made . . . to talk about plans. (Damn, sometimes you just wanna call the guys and gals up and get together and get it done, or at least, just see what happens . . .). Stay tuned for updates.

I’m very pleased to be playing the 8th Annual 30A Songwriters Festival down in Florida week after next. It was a fantastic way of getting the new year started last January, and I look forward to the same positive vibe this time around. Thanks to my dear friend Jeff Black for getting the ball rolling on having me come back this time. As usual, I look forward to hearing some new songs, as much as having the opportunity to play my own. Schedules are being put together last-minute, so I’ll update mine as soon as I get the details.

Many thanks to my team for helping to make 2016 a successful year: Bill Hutchison, Nick Loss-Eaton, Clay Pasternak at CPI Distribution, and the good folks at Green Room Music Source. And thanks to every single one of you who hosted a house concert, invited me to stay at your place, had me perform at your venue, came to a show, bought a record or bought me dinner or beverage-of-choice, or just said a kind word somewhere along the way. Or gave me a break on a much-needed set of tires–hello, Superior Tire in Salem, Oregon! Many miles this year; many new friends for which I am grateful, and many old friends that I’ve had the good fortune of reconnecting with. Though I do enjoy the travel, it’s made much easier by your kindness and support. I might not always remember your name, (it’s not you; it’s me) but I never forget your kindness. Let’s all hope for a kinder, smarter, and less death-obsessed year in 2017.

Love, Kevin

One Response to 2016: Buh-bye, you’ve been a terrible guest

  1. John Jackson December 29, 2016 at 1:59 pm #

    Great end of year missive. You have a wonderful philosophy which you express clearly – and one that I, also, try to subscribe to. Best wishes on all your plans for the new (scary) year. We will endure and get through it – together. Just keep your “Saint on a Chain” and it will all be good.

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