Oh hey, have I really only posted once since Christmas?? I had a couple things I started writing about but didn’t finish and post. Oh dear. I think for now it’s best to just summarize to catch up!
January was a little rough to be honest. It’s always a transition to come back from travels and coming from tropical weather into winter was not the most fun, I ended up getting a little sick for a bit there.
I did manage to get myself to the Des Moines open mics again in January, on that magical 2nd Thursday that means I can get to two in one night! I always love Ritual Cafe, and it was fascinating, at the Open Circus the performers consisted mostly of comedians that time around, so I felt a little out of place but definitely hadn’t laughed that much in a long time!
The day after that I took myself on a little shopping trip in Des Moines before heading home and got myself an iPhone. There are pluses and minuses, but it really is nice to not carry around both an iPod touch AND a phone, and the camera is so much better! I’ve been having a lot of fun on Instagram these days! Checking out my page will also give you a visual idea of some of my recent adventures: http://instagram.com/humsongs
Feb 1 - Opening Act at Limelight Lounge
I got to be the opening act for the Limelight Lounge show during the February Fairfield First Fridays Art Walk. As you can see from the poster, Michael was in the top 200 of American Idol, he’s a country singer. I kicked things off with three songs, Michael played, and then the organizer Mandy said I could play a few more during the break, so I did three more, Michael did a second set and then Dustin closed out the night with a rockin set. (Dustin has a Kickstarter going for his debut album right now, check it out: http://kck.st/134a524)
This was also the night that my guitar fell flat forward on the ground from the stand on the side of the stage after I played. She seemed fine at the time. But however…
Feb 6th - I Discovered my Guitar Broke
…when I pulled her out of the gig bag to practice for my Featured Artist Set at Rebecca Haven’s Red Rock Open Mic. This is what I saw:
Totally heartbreaking. I felt sick. Besides being my college graduation present and being awesome ever since, Rose and I totally bonded in Austin - all those open mics, recording my album, keeping me company? Luckily I have insurance, so I’m that process right now, and my Dad loaned me his guitar for my open mic performance and also for…
Feb 10th - The Sondheim Center Volunteer Appreciation Celebration
The Sondheim Center is our local theater. It has had it’s share of controversy around how it’s run, but that seems to be smoothed out now and either way, it’s always been an awesome space. I so wish I’d had a stage like that to perform on when I was still in school!
Part of why it runs well now is with the help of all the volunteers! This was the 2nd Annual Appreciation Celebration and I was invited to be the musical entertainment. I sang Jonah’s Whale, making sure to mention how that song has come to mean so much to me about being of service. Then they gave out some awards and I came back and sang Shoreline of Alaska, All or Nothing and even got a nice handful of folks to join in with me on Rain Song. Then we all went out into the lobby and had some nice refreshments and chatted. It was a lovely day, and so fun to sing in a big theater! That’s Cevin at the soundboard making me sound good:
Photo © 2013 Werner Elmker
The other couple of fun musical things that have happened in February:
1) I’ve had a few band practices! A couple times with Sarah (bass), and once with both Sarah and Greg (drums). We had a lot of fun working out how we wanted to play some newer songs and are expanding the repertoire so we could have a full set to play out sometime! We also talked about writing songs together and goals and stuff. Exciting!
2) I finally got a bass ukulele! I’ve wanted one for ages. I don’t really know how to play it, but I fell in love with one in a music store a couple of years ago and never stopped thinking about it, so this year I pooled some Christmas and Birthday money and just went for it!
Here’s an example of someone who knows how to play one:
I know, I know, “Why did you buy a tiny bass Heather, when you already have a big electric bass, you don’t know how to play either one and you are starting to work with a bass player?”
Well, first of all, love isn’t always logical, and it is just so darn fun to plunk around with the big rubber strings! But I do have it in my head that there may be some times where I’d do a show with other folks and it would be nice to sit in with them, take turns backing each other up in different ways, and having a nice little portable bass is a good thing in that scenario. Maybe Sarah will want to play it sometimes. In any case, I’m happy and excited to have it!
3) I had a Skype session with Dan! It was pretty awesome to be virtually right back at Rubicon in the “hot seat”, working things out so more music can come to the forefront! We’re gonna check in once a month and I’m pretty happy and excited about that.
So, that sums up my musical highlights for the past two months. I signed up for an online songwriting class with Pat Pattison that starts tomorrow and I’ve got a showcase in Des Moines at the end of March. I think we’re getting closer to the end of winter which will hopefully help lift those grey day blahs! Hooray!