Here is a look behind the scenes of a typical Windham Hill show. Featured here is Barbara Higbie, Liz Story, George Tortorelli, Sean Harkness and myself. These shows were last weekend, in Stockton New Jersey, and Scottsdale Arizona. When I got to the first show, I opened the case and the harp had some damage from the airline. But thankfully it was still playable.
The weeks post takes us to a wonderful intimate venue in Alta Dena, California. Its about 15 miles northeast of Los Angeles. Its called the Coffee Gallery and its a wonderful place to play because in the back of the coffee shop there is an intimate theater with excellent sounds and lighting. Each time we play there it sells out. (only 45 seats). The two gals singing are both wonderful artists in their own right, they are singers and writers Adjoa and Ashley Maher. We formed this group just to play at City of Hope, but ended up wanting to do even more, so here it is. We are doing a favorite song of ours by Sarah MacLaughin called “Angel”.
Hi there, here is a show we do each summer called “Festival of the Little Hills” in Saint Charles Missouri. It takes place in a small river town, the place where Louis & Clark began their historic expedition to the weston the Missouri River. The people of this town are so very nice, they love our music so much that I keep going back each year.
So you can see what a typical weekend is like in the many midwestern towns and cities I visit. I hope you enjoy it and get the sense of how human it all is..
This summer in Big Sky Montana the harp conference took place.Here are some clips that I put together, please pardon the shakey footage, it was so busy that I was lucky to get any video at all. The harp conference brings hundreds of harp peformers and enthusiasts from all over the country and world. We go there to teach the participants and share our music with everyone. The was the final stop of the tour with Aryeh Frankfurter and you will see in the opening clip of us playing harp and viola on the main stage. Following that is Aryeh’s set where I played Octave mandolin and we were joined by another two wonderful harpers William Jackson and Grainne Hambly playing pennywhistle and concertina. Next is a trio with Kim Robertson on harp, myself on harp and Aryeh on Nickelharpa. The last segment ends with a jam session in the hotel lobby featuring harpists Kim Robertson, Aryeh Frankfurter, Sue Richards, and Seumas Gagne. I am mostly taking the footage, and also playing mandolin. The website for future conferences is http://www.BigSkyHarpConference.com
I am just starting to go through the videos taken of performances we did on the Northwest tour I did this summer with Aryeh Frankfurter. One of our stops was in Eugene Oregon. We performed at the Eugene Hotel, a really cool and funky place where senior residence live, and they host concerts to the public in the heart of Eugene, which is a special town south of Portland.
Our host for the evening is David Helfand, a well known harper and recording artist in his own right. He’s a magical musician and we enjoyed the time with him.
When I host concerts at City of Hope, my favorite part is getting to have the performers stay at my house, and getting to play with them also. So we were happy to play some of Davids music with him in the unique setting of a closed restaurant after hours.
It was late at night after the concert, we were exhausted, but that never stops the music from flowing. Sitting there improvising with our instruments with all those empty tables and chairs was surreal and dreamlike. This is a piece written by David, (you can check out his website at http://www.DavidHelfand.com) Aryeh Frankfurter, also a harper extraordinaire (www.lionharp.com) is playing viola, and I am playing my octave mandolin.
So here you go..
I was in North Carolina again this past weekend, playing a show in Waynesville and a concert in Asheville. On a rare weekend day off, I walked around the Bele Chere festival in downtown Asheville. It is normally a very crazy festival, but this day was called “Family Day” so there is no alcohol served and a much mellower vibe. There is lots of great music in Asheville, its like the Nashville of the Southeast. Its a very progressive enlightened community nestled along the Blue Ridge Mountains. I spend a lot of time in North Carolina this time of year, as it is high festival season. So you’ll be seeing more in the coming weeks no doubt.
I have been on the road for a month. I have a lot of footage to go through to show you that, but in the meantime I put together some clips from last weekend’s festival in Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. I hope I captured the essense of the Scottish Highland Games at Grandfather mountain. Playing flute with me is George Tortorelli
I play each year for the American Cancer Society Luminaria Walk. It is part of an all day “Relay for Life” event at Santa Anita Racetrack. This is just one local group putting on this weekend event, as part of the whole nation of souls working towards the fight against Cancer.
All day the groups, people of all ages, many children circle the racetrack on foot. The entire track is lined with hand colored bags honoring their loved ones who are in the fight or have passed from this disease.After the day is done, they bring all the champion children to the stage and announce their earnings and give them prizes and crowns. Its the sweetest thing you will ever see.
Then my part happens. I start to play the harp, there are hundreds of candles waiting in buckets to be lit, and the woman asks the audience, “Who here has a mother or a father who is dealing with cancer, many people come forward to get their candle lit. “Who has a brother or a sister, a friend or colleauge, and so on, and before long every single person has come forward and stands with their candle.
Then they all prey together, and do the final walk around the racetrack in prayer and meditation.
Here are some images caught from that, that I have edited together as best I can.The music is from my solo harp CD titled “Quiet Heart” The song is called “Walk with me” I hope you will feel what I felt when it was happening.
All the best… take care of yourselves and your loved ones.
I have been learning my new video camera in hopes I can create some video content of my various adventures for this blog site. Its all quite new to me being on both sides of a camera but I am learning alot.
Since I am working on a new recording, and often there is waiting time in a studio, I put the camera on
a tripod and played around showing the various instruments I was using between recording takes. It is indeed a little rough, but hopefully a little interesting too. It shows about five or six of my main instruments I use, and lasts about eight minutes.
Lets see if this works…..
I have aquired some new video equipment and editing ability so soon I will be posting videos of some road adventures. Its incredible what you can do now right from the laptop so please check back soon for that.
Gotta get up.. time to get through security… more soon..