On Finishes And Beginnings
"Let it go, let it go..." and here's the latest album because you can tinker with it forever. Writing and recording this album has been a kind of stream-of-consciousness rush since it happened so quickly and took so many surprise turns along the way. It's a bizarre, moody trip when you hear it in order. This is a record that you'll want to play loud.
The store on the album cover is in Port Allen, Louisiana. Wished I had recorded a tune in this building with its dusty walls and wooden floors. It smelled like it would have sounded good.
Stream-of-consciousness brings on honesty and I like to be honest in my performances, so this was sort of another therapy session like "Dive!" was, though totally unexpected. Then, I had this whole other palette to use besides the mountain dulcimer, but I didn't have to touch any other instruments. If the song needed a drum groove, I grabbed some loops and set up a basic track. Everything else on top of that, from bass guitars to flutes is all being done on the mountain dulcimer. There aren't many makers offering the MIDI option on mountain dulcimers (or hammered dulcimer, for that matter) so I jumped at the chance to test drive the Bear Meadow Concert Grand when Dwain Wilder let me borrow it some long time ago. He's been graciously patient as I tried to carve out time to settle in with the instrument and do this experimenting, give him some notes on its performance. But when I did kick in with the sessions, the whole rocketed through pretty quickly, just an eruption of stuff and thematically all over the place.
This has got some good stuff that I think you'll like. So be on the lookout for it. It won't be available to the general public for a little while. But you can download the entire album now over at my Patreon page if you pledge $1 or more per upload. Help support my art and get a lot of cool stuff back!
So, what's next? Pre-production has begun on "Unresolved Blues", my first all-blues mountain dulcimer record and I'm really excited about it. Ideally, it will be finished before January 20 when I head up to Memphis for IBC. Somewhere in there, I'll receive a new custom resonator dulcimer from Folkcraft Instruments to take on the trip and hopefully record with. Beginnings are always fun because they're full of excitement and the unknown, but they're also full of anxiety and fear. "What's going to happen next?" For an artist, the process can be terribly satisfying, and satisfyingly terrifying all at once. Still, I'd rather be on the ride instead of sitting on the bench and watching it from a safe distance.
And I just got this cool thing, I'm a dripper now, well - nouveau coil builder. So I did the little bottom coil tanks with the slim batteries and then stepped up to a mod battery and finally got into building coils and semi-dripping. Instead of buying the little cartridges to replace in your e-cig, you make your own.
Different style batteries and "attys" are available to customize and I don't get into all the cloud chasing and mega-builds stuff, I just want something that gives me some nicotine and the sensation I had when I smoked cigars. The drippers and drip tanks are the way to go. This is the Stingray 803 mechanical mod with the Fogger 4.1 atty on top and a 2puffs drip tip. Feels like smoking a cigar, but tastes and smells like blackberries. (At least as of this typing. Usually, it's caramel or vanilla or butterscotch.) I know some of you out there care about this stuff, so that's I put it there. I know some of you don't really care about that stuff, and that's why I put it last.
I'm off to the Suwannee Dulcimer Retreat this coming weekend with David Beede, Aaron O’Rourke, Dan Landrum, Gary Gallier, Jessica Comeau, Laurie Alsobrook and Ray Belanger! Looking forward to a great weekend of music - hope you all are ready for a good weekend no matter what you do! Thanks for stopping by.
All the best,