Wednesday, May 3, 2017

The Arkansas Travelers
The Texas Tornados

Well folks we are back from Fayetteville, Arkansas.

After I had posted the trio was heading up to Arkansas for a show, someone jokingly commented        they  couldn’t believe something or someone had enticed me to actually leave Texas and play music elsewhere,  outside of the Lone Star State. Come on now…let’s be fair …we go up to Colorado and New Mexico,  out to California last year and occasionally make it up to Pennsylvania!  We do cross the state line every now and then… when we want to.  Any way it had been many moons since I  last played in Arkansas.  And in Fayetteville, the home of the Razorbacks!

However when a music series called SUNRISE STAGE CONCERTS contacted,  us we immediately booked a show there. What a wonderful surprise and place to play!  SUNRISE GUITARS Music Store hosts the concert series.   Owner Don Nelms had this vision to turn a former car dealership building into a large beautiful music store with an attached custom built concert hall (with room acoustics given a top priority).  Michael Hearne, Mike Roberts, and I performed  two sets for an enthusiastic sold out crowd. Micheal Hearne’s Arkansas family was there, and a friend of mine I went to high school with, I mean we are talking way, way back in the day, Matt Maples was there with his wife Marsha!!  Another old friend, Randy Bulla from the Houston Days, dropped in to say howdy after about 35 years and joined us for a couple of songs and played harmonica on “Mr. Jelly Roll Baker” and added flute on “Deep In the West”.
Also….Special guest, Ezra Idlet from TROUT FISHING IN AMERICA  brought his new drums, set them up, and jammed with us.  That was huge unexpected treat for everyone and added a special touch to the show. Ezra has that songwriter sensibility and touch on the drums.  He just seems to know when and where and what to play.  We always enjoy jamming with him. Thank you Ezra!  We’ll be jamming again at the Michael Hearne’s  Big Barn Dance!   Please check out the pics from the show I included, I’ll tell you what, when I do decide to leave Texas I  sure pick a fine time!  There were storms, heavy rain, and tornadoes tearing  a destructive path across Texas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas.  After Friday night’s show, on Saturday morning we loaded up and made our way back through heavy rain, fog, high winds… no GPS signal to seek shelter.  I mean you name it and it was around the corner.  I am always happy and at peace and breathe a sigh of relief whenever I see the ‘Welcome to Texas’ sign…But this time even more so.

We drove down to "The Beautiful East Piney Woods "where Winnsboro, TX. resides.   The sun was shining down for a moment. It’s a historic old town where even Bonnie and Clyde settled down for a spell. We performed Saturday night at the Winnsboro Art Center on Historic Old Market Street. By show time thunder was rolling and a storm was moving in to Winnsboro. We were wondering if anyone might show up at all.  A room full of folks braved the ominous stormy night and pounding thunderstorm to attend the show. Thank you folks. While lightening split the sky and thunder was sounding over head, our friends Lynn Adler and Lindy Hearne (yes, he and Michael are cousins) opened the show with a set of their well written original songs and beautiful vocals. They will be performing this year at MICHAEL HEARNE’S BIG BARN DANCE in Taos, so you’ll all get a chance to hear them perform.  As we hit the stage it looked and sounded outside like the end of the world was approaching and the building we were in might just fly away at any moment.  It didn’t and in spite of the deluge the show went on.

I must say we are truly blessed to be able to perform in such wonderful listening rooms, with wonderful sound systems, with fantastic audiences there for only one reason and that is to hear music and support what we do.  What more could we wish for?  Thank you Winnsboro for coming out.  Thank you Lynn  and Lindy for having us at the Art Center.

PLUS, our visit there was also highlighted by our stay at the Historic Hubbell House built in 1888.   It is now serves the community as a Bed and Breakfast with beautiful garden grounds and several “guest houses’ placed about.  We enjoyed our stay in such a serene peaceful setting the gardens provide. Thank you George ( the property manager) for your hospitality.  Sunday was a beautiful morning.  The storm had passed and before we hit the trail we had breakfast with Lynn and Lindy at their home just 10 miles outside of Winnsboro. They have a lovely place that sits on a private lake to come home to and wind down from the road.  We said our goodbyes to them and wound back down the country back roads and highways, through all the Sunday scenery to Houston. ALSO I found out…Being up in that part of Texas is in “Miranda Land” Miranda Lambert was born and grew up in Lindale, TX.  My old friend Debbie Porter who was at the show, who knows just about everyone and about everything musical thing going on around the area, told me that her friend guitarist John Defoore,  who used to run “The Picking Parlor“ in Mineola, TX. was the one who taught Miranda how to play guitar and used my songs, (one of which was “YOU WOULDN’T KNOW ME”) to teach her how to play and how to write a song. I had wondered how she first heard the song. It seems like she’s known my old song from her very first musical beginning  and for quite some time.   OK mystery solved. Thanks Debbie, thank you John. Thank you  Miranda for making my song part of your journey.

Now I am back home with a little time off before we work again.  I am working on new tunes for my next CD which I’ll begin to record next month.  So the down time will come in handy.

Stay tuned, I’ll keep you posted on upcoming shows and events. 

Thanks,  Shake

All of these photos were taken by Susan Idlet

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