Notes from the Road – Folk Alliance Day 4 February 23, 2008 – After getting to bed so late I woke up a 8 a.m. realizing I had another hour to snooze before breakfast at 9:00, so I settled back in for a couple more winks. When I next opened my eyes it was 11:30 – oops. Well, no eggs, etc. so I just had a protein bar and a banana with my coffee in the room. I had my first showcase today at 2:00 p.m. in the Cassidy House Concert suite. I was standing outside the elevator on the floor of that suite getting my song list together when Jack and Judy Williams popped out. And, who was with them but Paul Arnone & Tami Wingard from Tampa (Hannah’s Whirl) who decided to come all the way up just for a one day Folk Alliance initiation experience – what a nice surprise. I was honored that their first order of business was to come catch my showcase, quite special. I had a good turnout again with folks who I had sent invitations to in advance of the conference and others that I had met at my booth in the exhibit hall. Once my showcase was done and I had chatted with those who had attended for a minute, I dropped my guitars back in the suite and headed on down for my last day in the exhibit hall. There were less people in the hall today, but still very good traffic. I continued to meet new people and to promote my last showcase at 11:00 p.m. tonight. I spent some time talking to Wanda Fisher, a radio DJ from New York who has played my CD’s on her show. I also spent some time with Jim Photoglo (writer of the Dirt Band’s “Fishin’ in the Dark”) and Deborah Lader (Sons of the Never Wrong), Dalis Allen (Kerrville), MJ Hogan (David LaMotte), Beth Wood and many more. The 3 hours passed very quickly and before I knew it it was time to shut it down and load out my gear to the car. Not a single chex mix left! In all I gave away around 100 CD’s with promo material, etc. For my money, the exhibit booth was well worth it. I grabbed a quick bite to eat with Kari Estrin, a management and career consultant from Nashville, who I have been working with for a little while now. Kari has worked with some of the best folk artists in the business and is widely respected for her individualized approach to developing artists. She seems to have the knack for asking you the right questions to help you realize what your true goals are, define your musical identity and find the path best suited to your personal needs and professional objectives. I’m benefiting greatly from having her advice and assistance. After dinner I got some much needed rest and “centering” time to get ready for my last showcase – 11 p.m. in the Soona Songs suite. Soona Songs is a Texas based independent label representing the best in Texas folk, which is truly outstanding. Though the conference gathering dwindles on Saturday night, I had a great crown including some friends, Jack & Judy Williams, plus MJ Hogan (booking agent and assistant for David LaMotte), Vivian Nesbitt (Art of the Song, Albuquerque, NM) and several others. I played some of the “main” tunes” off both current albums and some stuff from “Break Some Stones” that, now in retrospect, was more personal and emotional given what has happened in my family in the past months. It was difficult, but it let me release some feelings artistically that have been pushing to the surface all week. All in all an excellent set which prompted Marilyn Duncan, President of Soona Songs, to compliment “. . . you are an amazing songwriter!” Ok, so I didn’t argue – can you blame me?!! With all the work behind me I finally dissolved into true enjoyment of the music and drinking a little bit, something I’ve gone easy on this week – this is actually work after all. I wandered room to room listening to some truly great music wherever I went, including my MySpace pal, Jan Seides, from Austin that is coming to Florida in August and we hope to do some shows together. I happened by the GoGirls Suite where I was asked by someone there (who had been trying to catch one of my showcases, but kept missing) to play a tune. I borrowed a guitar, retuned, and played Break Some Stones with outstanding accompaniment by Kim (oops, can’t remember – from California I think), another client of Kari Estrin’s. Hugely well received and I ended up hanging there until I could no longer stay vertical or even slanted. I finally have spiraled in at a little before 4 a.m. – I’ll conclude and send this out sometime tomorrow . . . er . . . uh . . . today . . . ummmmmm . . . well, you know what I mean! >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>