Scientific predictions point to April 21 as potentially the most dangerous time for Illinois. Scientists, politicians, armchair theorists—all making this up as they go. And given the spotty leadership in the U.S., the feeling is that we're all on our own. My favorite part of this bad situation is the creative output it's set in motion. Too many to mention, but they keep coming. Photos, paintings, songs, videos, poems, musings. In my little world there is an isolation and solitary life that I often long for. A chance to make stuff up, from a long list of "things I'd like to do had I the time." I have the time.
If people do indeed show their true colors in times of crisis, I am fortunate to belong to a community whose colors are vividly generous and loving. The frequent occurrence of a car pulling in to the driveway makes me weepy and grateful. Another friend emerges with bags of groceries, a mask, a card, a well wish, a home cooked wonder. Like everyone, I hear the disturbing accounts of people hoarding and being so wrapped up in their personal concern that they lose sight of the opportunity for togetherness and unity. Thankfully, I don't know anyone like that, but I understand the impulse and do my best to calm my judgments, realizing that they, too, are in the circle. In my circle. In our circle.
Baby, it's cold outside. Not the song, but the temperature. February in Chicago. Uke class warmed things up tonight, though. A nice group has been the mainstay for quite some time. Thanks to Kathy for bringing so many cool new peole into the fold. Tonight we learned a John Denver tune I'd not known before: Calypso, written in honor of Jacques Cousteau (Calypso was the name of Cousteau's boat). At our next gathering I plan on all Irish all the time. The Star of County Down, Danny Boy and maybe a few lesser known Irish tunes. Four strings. What could go wrong?
...has always been the spice of my musical life. A life filled with solo performing, Compass Rose, Christina Trulio, Bonnie, Rokko & Annie, Terry Moran, assorted church musicians, teaching guitar and ukulele. And now—cello!
Bonnie's loyal following followed her to Three Oaks, MI for a late afternoon concert at the delightful Acorn Theater. With the always amazing Don Stille on piano and accordion, Bonnie traversed the decades of her artistry with her signature voice—clear and expressive, After 45 years with Bonnie I'm starting to get the hang of it.
Working up a handful of Brazilian choros with Phil Goldman. First performance will be at the beach service on June 2. Lively stuff...
What could be better than rejoining forces with Rokko Jans and Annie Hat Williams? A wonderful evening featuring all those tunes we wrote and those we borrowed. We rehearsed the night before, and David and Patti Kovacks graciously hosted the house concert. Dear friends were in attendance, and, frankly, I don't know if we ever sounded better.
A memorable weekend of music and camaraderie in Gaylord and Traverse City, MI started with Rokko Jans playing sonatas by Beethoven and works of Debussy and Chopin. Opening for Mr. Jans was Ned, Rokko's long time band, whose bandmates span the decades and who traveled many miles to both honor Rokko and to share their wonderful music. We all jammed the next day in Nick's garage, and on Sunday Rokko and I played at his church. On Monday I brought my uke down to the shores of Lake Wequas and wrote two songs. Back home now, preparing for uke class and looking forward to playing at the Lake Bluff Farmers Market on Friday with Terry Moran.
Buzz is alive and well! The CD looks and sounds great. A lovely collection of songs and word imagery from Bill Buczinsky. A rewarding collaboration.
Just finished composing a song dedicated to the 16th century Spanish mystic and author, Teresa de Avila. It was debuted at the beach in Lake Bluff on September 17, and the amazing Cheryl Wilson performed it with her trademark soul and elegance.
I'm certain no one is reading my blog, which allows me to write anything I want. BUT—just in case, here's a snapshot of the summer:
Enjoying performing with David Hawkins, who, although he lives in Pittsburgh, still travels back "home" where the love is...though my Hellhound days are over, I still enjoyed playing with Terry Moran and Phil Goldman in July...Two—count 'em—two DBUTs gigs, playing in my favorite ukulele band ever...performed with Christina Trulio and Bob Hasty.
But mostly my focus has been my solo gig. Ah, if only I could sing. But you can't have everything, so I continue pursuing a solo career with my lead acoustic played to tracks that I produce in my studio. Always enjoy playing at Posy's...played Curry Hut in Highwood, played twice at the Lake Bluff Farmers Market. It's fun, but it's a bit lonely because I love playing with other musicians. Unfortunately that's a moving target and often borderline unsatisfying because of my tastes, preferences and expectations. So my guitar is my voice, and I work on it tirelessly.
The Bill Buczinsky "Buzz" album is complete. All that's left is the CD pressing. And the CD release party in October.
It's early August and the gig calendar is sparse, which means it's time to get back to the writing desk and make up more stuff.
Putting the finishing touches on Bill Buczinsky's album, Buzz. What a fun project. Bill and I share a love of language, and that love is evident in every song.
CD #2, Cut 4. Plastered in Paris, sung much better than I sing it.
Another beautiful summer night, fortunate to sit next to my good friend Fred Koch as we chime in on Terry's great tunes. Surprised by friends old and new...
Another magical summer night as you can only find at the Cellar Gate in Highwood. Thanks to all for coming out. And thanks to David Hawkins for the magnificent tunes and to Fred for gluing it all together.
What a great way to re-enter the gigging life. Played a wedding at Elawa Farms on a gorgeous sunny day with dear friends Fred Koch, Bobby Newman, Daryl (Mr. Beeeeese) Beese and Terry Moran. The Instrumental Dancing Bohemian Ukulele Team. You guys sounded great!
Just finished teaching an 8-week Dancing Bohemian School of Uke session, and am still in delighted shock over a gift the classes gave me: a shiny new iPad Pro!
A long awaited treat—performing with Christina Trulio and her talented beau Bob Hasty. Intimate, disarmingly beautiful songs. made all the more memorable accompanied by Ken Hall and Fred Koch.
Well, we didn't exactly stroll, but it was great fun playing the old standards with jazz violinist extraordinaire Tom Bowling. He was sawing away as I was just trying to keep up with all those changes in flat keys. A Valentines evening serenade at Café Pyrenees. Thanks to dear friends Ken, Chris, Terry and Bernie for joining in the love fest.
A wonderful evening in the home studio with three dear long-time friends and a new friend who's a real standout. A good old fashioned vocal session with Johnny, Cheryl, Jeff and Simbryt. They have all been amazing forever and have helped me over the years in ways I can never repay.
I don't really blog. Or at least I haven't. Maybe I'll just put some stuff here that I wouldn't mind sharing. Like Tommy Emmanuel.