Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Bear Creek Blues

Bear Creek Blues (mp3) (pdf)

New Year's Eve, relaxing at home while other musicians are out working for the New Year. I was bringing the alphabetical list of tunes from the So Many Tunes blog up to date and I remembered that a while back I had recorded a short tune and never posted it.

So tonight, for the last tune of 2019, I'm sharing a solo mandolin version of the Bear Creek Blues. It was a couple of months or more back when I did this. I think the tune originated over a decade ago and I found an early version in an old music notebook. I know I altered a few things but I couldn't tell you what.

I hope everyone has a good time tonight and returns safely home to start a new decade.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Blairs' Waltz

Blairs' Waltz (mp3) (pdf)

When we first moved to Decorah in 1994 Mike and Sue Blair were two of the first people we met. The Blairs have recently relocated to nearby Waverly, Iowa and that transition produced this new tune a few weeks ago.

Most of the recordings presented here are recorded by me alone. Today's recording is one of the few that features "guest artists." In this case Mike Blair on guitar and Mike and Sue's daughter, Kate, playing the flute. The tune is beautifully played and I'm happy to share it here.

Over the years I have enjoyed playing music with Mike, and sometimes Sue also, many times for a variety of purposes. For a few years back in the 1990s Mike, Erik Sessions, and I performed around town as the Dug Road Trio. In that group Mike came in as a replacement for our original guitarist after he left town. One notable gig from that time involved providing some dinner entertainment, joined by guest vocalist Ellen Rockne, for the visiting Crown Prince of Norway. Mike has also joined the ever-changing Western Home String Band on guitar for many contra dances over the last 15-20 years.

In Mike's role as Campus Pastor he has often been invited me, and often Erik, to join him for various Luther College events. We have played for many weekday chapel services and other Luther gatherings and have frequently accompanied Mike as he performed one of his always fun parody songs; "On the Cover of the Lutheran", "Sweet Home Decorah, etc."

Erik and I get to join Mike and Sue one more time tomorrow at the annual Burning Bright holiday concerts where we will play one of Mike's fine non-parody original songs. I think there are still a few tickets left. I'm sure that this won't be the last time that we play together, there may even be a trip to Waverly (it's not that far) in our future.
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