Good Monday to you, if there is such a thing. And most importantly, happy Veteran’s Day. Let’s remember those who’ve served us all so selflessly, with such courage. Here’s a photo-of-a-photo of my grandfather, Col. Paul Butler, a badass if there ever was one, from Oak Grove, LA, who spent a few decades flying B-52s and other planes for the USAF:
He was always kind to me when I was a kid. But just that look in his eye tells me that he might be scratching his head a bit, if he were still around, re: what I’m doing with this life (but maybe I’m just “projecting” again). Speaking of which: I’ve been quiet, yes; I can’t quite explain what happened last week, other than I was sorta lost. Touring is a reinforcement of the work ethic–and the lack of touring is its opposite, apparently. At least for me, last week. Thankfully, that all changes in a few days, for a few days:
FRI 11/15 STARR’S CAVE NATURE CENTER BURLINGTON IA
SAT 11/16 MUSIC UNDER THE WATER TOWER DONNELLSON IA
SUN 11/17 KRANZBERG ARTS CENTER ST. LOUIS MO
Joining me for these shows will be Jon Radford on drums, whom some of you know from Luella & the Sun; on the upright bass will be Steph Dickinson, whom I have the great fortune of making music with every now and then. Hope those of who in the area can make it out to hear us! See the tour page for more info. Other dates coming up include a December show with Webb Wilder at the Hi-Watt here in Nashville, and a few dates opening for Todd Snider in early January. And speaking of TS, don’t forget that the Hard Working Americans record (with their version of “Down to the Well”) comes out in January.
I’m sure you’re wondering (possibly even losing sleep) about how the sponsorship campaign for the new record is going! Well, I’ll tell ya: as of now we’re slightly above $8K–thanks to 110 of you–which is great, but we have a long way to go! If you have friends and relations who might be interested in this project, please share the link and spread the word. I literally cannot do this without you. And I’ll be the first to remind you that this is not a donation. You’re just buying the record before we make it–and when you do, you get some special treats as thanks. There ain’t no record company no more, generally speaking, and I never could understand their accounting anyway. Creatively, you could say that Joe V. McMahan and I are in “pre-pre-production” mode, kicking around very general ideas about recording as I quietly email him links to solo demos of new songs. But winter’s a great time to focus, right? We will be pushing forward in the coming weeks; it’s time.
So what have I been doing, if not eating asphalt and dripping sweat on a vintage guitar? Let’s see: not shaving; mowing leaves; practicing guitar; trying to write, failing miserably. Running a little; walking more. Reading (or attempting to read) Karen Armstrong‘s book on the Bible, and some James Dickey again. Re-reading the opening chapters of Lewis Hyde‘s great book about art & commerce, The Gift. Having an art sale of sorts over on Ebay. Watching clips of Townes Van Zandt from Heartworn Highways (holding a rifle by the business end of the barrel while cradling a fifth of V.O. under his elbow, etc., i.e. #donttrythisathome), and a 70 min. interview from last year with Mr. Earle on fora.tv. And according to the marketing/self-exploitation committee, not talking to you enough about my endeavors–which I know some of you probably find endearing. Or something. But I’d rather talk less with more to say than post relentlessly about not-so-much.
May we all have a very good week–talk to you, uh . . . soon?