Opening Weekend 2009 – Best & Worsts


  • First thing Saturday morning being set upon by the Sheriff and his men, and getting patrons to lie to him in my defense 🙂
  • Having so many friends show up to support Andy and I at our first show in Kids Kingdom Saturday. It meant a lot!
  • Having a much larger audience at the end of Andy and I’s show than at the beginning.
  • Singing in the street with Jon Baade, and Jen Brinkman, and earlier with Jen Spitzer
  • Having a patron shout “you bastard!” at the sheriff when he attacked Jyncks, and the bursts of laughter when I “re-inflated” Jyncks after the fight.
  • Watching Robin and his men fawn over Jyncks after his defeat and totally ignore Little john writhing in agony on the ground.
  • Being able to help in the process of re-uniting a little lost girl, Lizzy, with her parents.
  • A sweet little extremely well mannered and well spoken ~5year old girl who right after the funeral described to me in great detail her exciting time at the maypole.
  • Being in the right place at the right time to support friends after the funeral procession
  • Worst

  • Sundays Funeral Procession
  • Missing out on the Musicians revel I love so much
  • Absolute Best

  • The serendipity moment of being out with the repaired “pirate’s booty” puppet when we encountered a group of blind children. (Details to come)
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Musical Emotional Landmines…

I hate how emotional land mines can sneak up on you out of nowhere. I was getting ready to go to Navy Pier for the shanty sail, and a couple songs popped in my head and just hit me pretty hard. You would think after 3+ years I’d be able to see it coming…

One of the two, Last Shanty, I have pretty much gotten to the point where I can cope with it on it own. I don’t fully enjoy it as much as I used to still, but it’s at least something I can listen to most days. (Certain days in April are an exception)

The other one, that really just knocks the wind out of me, is “Where the soul never dies“. I love the version by Bryan Bowers, on his Bristle Cone Pine album, its just haunting. That is of course the one that popped into my head… followed then by Last Shanty… a double whammy…
Clip of Soul of Man

St paddys at the Kendall pub

Gordon and I found ourselves at the Kendall Pub tonight. Our friend Steve was scheduled to play, but unbeknownst to us they also scheduled a bagpipe & drum group as well. Poor Steve. The bag pipers were great, We even managed to impress the hell out of them by complimenting them on their rendition of “leaving of Liverpool”. The look on their faces was priceless.

Open mic, and call for booking info

tonight was another nice night at the pub. It was looking like it would be a no show but at the last minute a phone call changed it all and it ended up being a great night. I struck up a conversation with “Gordon” at the end of the bar only to discover that he is from Scottland. I mentioned my music tastes tend to lean towards irish & Scottish folk as well as Sea shanties. At that he challanged me to prove it by singing him the “wild rover”. So I did. As I got throught the first verse he laughed and joined in. After we finished that he started naming things at random and I’m proud to say he didn’t stump me once. (well I knew choruses to everything) We talked off and on all night and might haveJon the manager convinced to organize a folk music night! Jon would also like me to pass along the names and contact info for the folk bands I know. So… Seelie Court, Bounding Main, Jessie, Oghm, Etc… Get me your contact info for booking if you are interested.

Irish music in my area!

Ok gang,
There is actually going to be Irish music out by me for a change. Friday, September 12th please join me at the stonefire pub in Yorkville, IL.
For more info on the artist visit
I would really like to show the pub a good attendance and encourage them to bring in more Irish & Folk type musicians. So please mark your calendars now. They have great food, and even have vegitarian options.

Saturday at the revel

Saturday, FOF had a singalong that lasted for an hour and a half. That was fun but I pretty much trashed my voice that had not really fully recovered from last week. This normally wouldn’t be any problem at all, and I didn’t even give it a second thought. About 30 minutes later I arrived at the revel. When I got there I started moving a few benches over like normal. Then Jesse blindsided me by requesting I get up front and sing. I protested and appologized for not having much voice left and then went ahead with “Ambletown”. It was really a surreal moment to say the least. A handfull of the regulars knew the song and sang along on the chorus which helped settle my nerves a little. Then about 3/4 of the way through Jesse started playing along on his guiter. I have to admit the whole experience was very cool. I just wish I had actually had my full voice. Afterwards, everyone applauded, and Jesse said some very nice things. I spent the rest of the revel up front with the muscians. It was really a wild experience to say the least.
Thank you Jesse.

Singing on the road

Wow, we have been singing all the way from Amsterdam to our next host. People took turns leading and everyone else jumped in as they could.
I even got up enough courage to lead a couple. I did ambletown and after the first verse Bounding Main chimed in with a beautiful harmony. David taped it… I’m admitedly scared to see that tape…

Oh my god

Oh my god,David and I just got back from the 3 hour and still going all sing shanty singout.
Imagine around 80 shanty singers all singing their hearts out. It was incredible, absolutly incredible.

This night was one of the best nights in my life. Just wow! ! ! Overwhelming shanty goodness!

I’ll sing you a song, it’s a song of the sea

Something really cool happened today in the FOF garden. Uncle Ho managed to put together an impromptu singout. Between himself, Jennifer, Kate, Ray, and myself we managed to sing together for almost an hour. It was so well received that we have been asked to make it a regular event.
I think my personal favorite was Ho and I doing “Grey funnel line”.