So it’s release day. If you didn’t know about this before landing on this post, all I can say is you are remarkably free of the disease of social media, because I did my best to get the word out. We’re doing a show tonight at Oskar Blues in Lyons. I’m hoping to see a bunch of friendly faces there. It should be a great time.
In the in between I want to pause a minute and say a thank-you to the people who made this happen in a thousand different ways. There is no way for a guy like me to do a project like this without a ton of help. So here, in place of long liner notes (hey, those cost money!), are the people who made this happen.
Brian Schey– I ran into Brian at an open mic about two years ago and we started talking about doing something. Something like an EP, all acoustic, really simple and quick. That’s all. So, it didn’t work out simple, but that’s not Brian’s fault. He played bass, produced, and was a sometimes ‘artistic therapist’ throughout this project. His fingerprints are on pretty much every aspect of the record.
Brian McRae– I didn’t know Brian (notice how EVERYONE is named Brian? Yeah, that caused some problems) before doing this. We recorded in his space, he played drums, was the lead engineer, and, really, one of the nicest, most gracious guys I have ever met. And an unbelievably good drummer. Getting to know him was one of the unexpected joys of doing this.
Arthur Lee Land– I met Arthur at Song School in Lyons about four years ago. Then he moved to Lyons and started walking his dog across the street from the house we used to live in. So when Schey suggested getting him to play guitar on this I was all in, and Arthur is awesome. You should check out his music, it’s great. And, he has been so supportive, even texting me last night with some thoughts for the show tonight (advice I’m taking, BTW). Having him in Lyons is part of what makes this town really special.
Junior Burke– Well, Junior played harmonica on two tracks on this record. But saying that doesn’t really cover what a supporter he has been. Our daughters have been friends for about eight years, and so we hung out together from time to time, and as people like us do we talked about writing and music and we ended up playing some songs together. Junior really encouraged me with songwriting. Frankly, had I known at the time what his resume really was, I’d never have been brave enough to play him a song, so I’m glad I got to know him as a friend first.
Brian Eyster- Brian and his wife lived across the street from us for ten years before we moved to the other side of town. We played songs on the front porch a fair bit and talked music. He has also played side guy, with his dobro, at a fair number of gigs with me in the past two or three years. So when we needed another instrument on two songs, I knew I had to get him on this record some how. Brian is classic Lyons character- He will hate that I said this, but he’s one of the best players I’ve had the pleasure of hanging with, ever. And he’s one of the kindest souls I know. Having him on this really made the project for me.
John Macy played steel guitar on three songs. Getting to see him play was a mind blowing experience. And he’s an awesome guy. If you’re in Colorado, check out Casey James Prestwood and the Burning angels next time they pass your way. You won’t be disappointed.
Ash Ganley, Jesse Garland, Cherie Taylor- All three of these people are amazing singers and performers in their own right. Getting to know them was awesome and they helped make the record sound as good as it does. Again, to live in a place where talent like this is around every corner is a privilege.
Emilyn Inglis– every time you hear me sing, you’re hearing Emilyn. If it weren’t for her, this would be really great musicians and a guy doing bad karioke. Plus, she gets all my Monty Python jokes, which really helped when she was coaching me through the vocal recording sessions.
Terry Kishiyama, Josh Elioseff– Josh is a fixture in the Colorado Front Range music scene, as a photographer and as a musician himself. He is a generous warmhearted spirit who can be seen dancing in the pit at most of the festivals in this state. He did all of the album and PR photography on this project. Terry, a killer guitar slinger in his own right with the band Interstate Stash Express, is also an amazing graphic designer and immediately got the vibe we were going for on the record and turned it into a fantastic design.
Lori & Marin- I’m doing this one last because it’s so hard to come up with words to express my gratitude to my wife, Lori, and my daughter, Marin. Lori has been putting up with me for eighteen years now. That, in and of itself, is justification for some sort of medal or commendation. She’s been a really great partner and support while doing this thing that took a lot longer and was way more involved than the impression I may have given at the start. Marin, who listened to every singe mix and tweak of this record as we drove to school in the morning has been incredibly patient and very incisive in offering suggestions and opinions. A wonderfully creative young person in her own right, I can’t wait to see what she ends up working on herself! My undying love and gratitude to you both.
And to the town of Lyons itself. I played some open mics at the Barking Dog in its original location on main street some twelve years ago now. That got me playing guitar regularly again. From all the wonderful people, musicians and non, to venues like The Stone Cup, Oskar Blues, The Fork, Spirit Hound, and Planet Bluegreass, this has been a place to be supported as an artist and given some room to grow. Thanks!
Just for fun, I put together a video with some of the folks listed above. Hope you enjoy!