Alright. I'm listening to a song from the new ep, called "Writer." It sounds good, waiting on my mentor to weigh in. Super excited now. Artwork back on track, very simple for the 4 eps, then maybe a full-length cd release with all of them, maybe adding some extra tracks because I CERTAINLY HAVE THEM. I all caps'd that because I've got alternative take after alternative take for many of the tunes. 

And new songs, too.

I want to be quick today, because I'm rehearsing at 11 with the keyboardist from Specx, Andrew Bray. We have a gig next Friday and need to give it a run-through. I think we'll have some drums/percussion, too. But, as I've been spending an inordinate amount of energy on other artistic pursuits, I need to brush up.

Usually maybe I mentioned this last week, I write a list of goals for the coming year. Then, a few years ago I added 1 new year's resolution (this year's is: No More Backlog) but today I realized that for the coming year I have only 1 goal:

I'm working on calligraphy. I liked it as a kid, did it a bit, but it's kind of fun to have a pen and ink at the ready for times like this. I'm on the 10 year plan here. 


And that's all I need. It's kind of a shock for this to start to snowball, but it has. I realized that if I don't clean my brushes, but paint every day, they don't need to be cleaned, and I've saved myself a step. I acquired a painting mentor, a Professor Emeritus of Art & Design from Valparaiso University, Dick Brauer, who happens to be the father of Elizabeth Brauer Allen who is the cellist and co-partner with me in Vale of Paradise. Dick got me to start painting portraits and I am on my second one and so far, so good. Possibly I'm still developing my style, but I think I have it, so the thing is to keep going.

As a birthday present to myself, I got an old spinnet from an estate sale. I missed the Victrola which caused my birthday to take a nose dive, but I'm having the piano tuned next week by a local pianist amazing guy, Waz.  And, I'm going to ask him if he'd give me some lessons. I'm just starting (well, ok, a few years ago) to experiment and would like to write more on it. The only problem currently is it seems to stink, and I'm not sure how to clean it. I'm not one much for old house smells. 

The design stuff, i.e. clothing is still going on, but then I realized that I said I was going to bring some clothes to the Society store in Valparaiso for Spring. If that's the case, I need to get cooking. My only hesitation, is that the owner, Carey, has a complete aesthetic, which I find appealing, and I think if I want to sell more in her store, I need to fit her vision, her color schemes. I really should just make some large leather bags and charge a lot and not worry about it.

Then there's guitar, which I want to keep working on. I thought I'd work on being a better guitar player this week and then got sidetracked by kind of writing a new song. I don't honestly know if that's going to make me a better player. Ok, I just took a mental trip for a minute thinking that I might need to add a few lessons there-and I seem to be doing every thing else except that. Well, I put that on my list. 

I feel like a dilettante, but that's who I am, then, I suppose. We'll see once things start rolling out.


So yeah, my birthday, in retrospect, was great. However, getting kicked out of Black Panther because my son was being a jerk (he has Down Syndrome and is non-verbal and thought it was hilarious to make a lot of noise) and then getting in a fight with my in-laws on first glance really seemed to be awful, but then I found myself laughing the next day because I didn't know which was the worst part! The phone calls, cards and gifts-all great, lovely and appreciated. What we realized is that my son needs to get out more and control himself a bit more, too. 

So, here we are. TTG. 




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