Upper Valley Music Festival

So, I’ve tricked the powers that be into getting me in on this. This is an all-day fest all over town in Turners Falls, MA. Saturday, July 21. All day.

Lots of great music to see and hear. Me? I’m looking forward to seeing Heather Maloney, if we’re not playing at the same time. Addison Rice will be hosting and wrangling us at the Burrito Rojo Emerging Artists’ Stage. According to the schedule below, I’m on at 4:30. I know some of these folks, and they’re all worth a listen. I’ll probably hang out and listen and learn about the folks I don’t know.

Upper Valley Music Fest Emerging Artists’ Stage Schedule
12:00-1:00) Addison Rice
1:00-1:30) James McSheffrey
1:30-2:00) Alec Hutson
2:00-2:30) Hannah Hoffman
2:30-3:00) Cyndi Cain Fitzgerald
3:00-3:30) Larry Allen Brown
3:30-4:00) Zachary Wallenius-Duda
4:00-4:30) Emma Murray
4:30-5:00) Tom Woodbury
5:00-5:30) Bill Baer
5:30-6:00) Paula Marie
6:00-7:30) John Salzman
7:30-8:00) Alexa Renaud-Clark
8:00-8:30) Addison Rice
8:30-9:00) Mariam Massaro and the Gaea Star Band
9:00-10:00) Open Mic!

Smokin’ J’s Flood Fest

So, I had the pleasure of playing at another Irene-flood-related benefit show this weekend. What a treat!

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There were some terrific folks there; many of them already pals of mine. It was a treat to share a night and the stage with them. Rocky Roberts (Neil Young’s guitar tech for, like, a hundred years; on his way to London to tour with My Morning Jacket the next morning but he stayed on to do this show) and his band (all pals of mine); The Lonesome Brothers (more pals); Kim and Sharon (ditto); Clayton and Aaron (duh); Dave Wolinsky (I’ve seen him once or twice); and Chip Wilson (never even heard of him).

Let’s talk about this Chip Wilson guy. OMG! The man’s got chops. I mean real Tommy Emmanuel chops. Crazy unbelievable, can’t-even-begin-to-follow-along while staring at his left hand trying to figure out what he’s doing. With a little bit of drool probably coming out of the side of my mouth because I’m so enraptured by the music coming out of this guy and his guitar. Gotta seek out CDs and performances.

Also, he came up special from New Orleans to do this show. He’s originally from Vermont, “played his first paying gig in Manchester, VT forty years ago,” he said. Moved to New Orleans for the music. Got flooded out of New Orleans during Katrina. Moved back and was so impressed about how many New Englander musicians made the trip down to do flood-relief benefits that he had to return the favor. No money, no fame, no nuthin’. Just a good guy doing his thing to help out. How great is that?! Plus, did I mention the guy can play?

It was a treat and honor to be part of the show at Smokin’ J’s. So much fun; they raised some serious money to help the folks at Twice Blessed (who will in turn help the folks of Wilmington); there was a great turnout for a great cause. Anyway, thanks for having me and most of all, thanks for coming out and supporting the good people of Wilmington.

PS. I have very fond memories of Wilmington: it’s the home my favorite childhood ski area. Carinthia, now part of the Mt. Snow conglomerate, was a small, family-owned place with a couple of t-bars when I was a kid. With the best french fries ever. I remember the long car rides up from central Massachusetts, listening to my father sing Gilbert and Sullivan medleys and the day we showed up for opening day and my father was outraged (outraged, I tell you) that a single adult day pass had gone up to $6.00. I understand that skiing has gotten a little more expensive since then. I haven’t been keeping up so much since I ran out of ACLs when I was 18. Anyway…

A Good Old-Fashioned Bar-Raising!

Two pieces in the local paper about Saturday’s benefit show featuring “Evelyn Harris of Sweet Honey in the Rock, Tom Woodbury, and others” (if I do say so myself…) to raise money to help Flat Street get back on its feet. This is a good thing and I’m pleased and proud to be a part of it.

’Bar Raiser’ benefit aids Flat Street Brew Pub and Raising her voice — and a bar.


My town is going to be sad again. Hurricane Irene stopped by for a visit and left us with some flooding. It’s still raining, so it ain’t over and the fat lady hasn’t sung yet. But I wanted to share this with y’all.

My town is going to be sad again. And we will gather and rally and fix and uplift.

You remember the fire not so long ago. Since then we’ve had some violence that really shook us. And now we’re flooded.

My town is going to be sad again. And we will gather and rally and fix and uplift. Because that’s how we roll.

Brattleboro Fire Relief Fund Update

Remember how I left TABLE 10 on sale at CD Baby so we could raise some money for the recent fire in Brattleboro?

Well, I’m in Portland, OR. I get an email from the nice folks at CD Baby telling me that the warehouse has run out of TABLE 10 and would I please send them six more. I find a post office and send them six of the ten I have with me. I get an email the next day, thanking me for the six. I get another email the day after that, telling me that they’ve run out again and would I please send them ten more.

So, thankyouthankyouthankyou. Apparently, folks are buying TABLE 10, which means the fire relief fund will be getting 100% of what you spend: my cut, cdbaby’s cut, shipping, whatever, and we can all feel good about ourselves. Plus, you get to listen to some tunes which are, if I may be so bold, not too bad.

If you’re in Brattleboro this weekend, check out the benefit show on Saturday, May 7, noon-midnight. It’s for a great cause and there are people working really hard to make it wonderful. Because that’s how we roll in Bratt!

My Town is Sad

A couple of days ago a major historic landmark in my town burned. This was a six-alarm fire that dispossessed almost 60 people and businesses right downtown on Main Street. So, my town is sad. My town is also resilient. Being the great community that we are, the big benefit show is already in the works. Saturday May 7. Y’all should go. It will be a terrific show, but more importantly, it will benefit a good cause and it will be a piece of community, which is so important at times like these.

I’ll be in Portland, OR that day, looking for an open mic or a gig so I can send a shout-out (did I really just say that?) to the folks back home.

I’m leaving the CD (and downloads) on sale at cdbaby.com and I will give 100% of the proceeds to the benefit fund, when there is one. That’s 100% of what you spend: my cut, cdbaby’s cut, shipping, whatever. Please, this is an even better reason to buy my CD than last month’s “birthday sale.” And I’ll probably throw in the “birthday sale” proceeds as well.

My alter-ego, Woodbury Solutions, has already started talking with folks about donating some computer gear and config to WVEW 107.7 FM, one of the businesses that’s now homeless.

So, you buy or download the CD, I give the money to the good cause, we all get to feel good about ourselves. Who’s in?