Glenn performs at one of our favorite events, the Block Island Music Festival! Great people, good music, a beautiful setting, and just a damn good time. (June 2012)
it is right… ah Yeats, to be so abused by me, groping for an opening line to explain:
A Long Silence.
Well, no lovers estranged or dead (a good thing!), just lots of activity, interspersed with periods of lassitude and just-not-wanting-tah. But we have been busy and having fun, and descanting and descanting,upon the supreme theme of art and song…
Everything is coming up in bloom! The past few months seem a blur, even though it’s been fairly routine. We had a few trips north, for music and for snow sports—it wasn’t the best winter in terms of snow, but we had a great time skiing and boarding nonetheless. On the music front, with the benefit of hindsight, it was Good Times, Bad Times (can’t let a chance to reference a Zeppelin song pass, sorry folks, it’s knee-jerk at this point).
Good times: Glenn played a bunch of really good gigs and made some new friends and fans. Bars are probably the worst venue for a solo fingerstyle guy—it’s so loud that even when there’s good audience reaction, it tends to drown out the sound and the vibe. So while we had a great time in Portsmouth, NH, the gig he played there was not the most heartening. Fortunately, the other gigs (featured performer at some music nights hosted by the ever-arts-supportive Unitarians, some other venues) went over well, and we had a good time in the north country.
Now, in between trying to get the household projects underway (all kinds of powerwashing and painting and planting plans—operative word being PLANS right now), I’ve been trying to help more with the marketing side of things. Man, it’s overwhelming sometimes. There are so many vehicles—I spent today trying to figure out what Google Plus has to offer on the front, as well as Reddit and some other stuff that I have only a nodding acquaintance with. So much signal to noise. Hard to be heard amid the din.
On my own front, work and homefront and getting serious about getting into shape for kayaking season. Not a whole lot of writing going on, alas, but I am submitting to Tumblr’s poem a day… contest? feature? not sure what to call it…nothing new so far, but it may give me a much-needed kick in the butt.
Upcoming Glenn gigs: New coffeehouse in New Haven on Friday; we’re heading back to the Block Island Music Festival (yay—love BI!), possibly the Montauk Music Festival; gearing up for the summer season too. I’ll post dates and links soon.
Happy New Year! Filled with resolve and optimism, we’re off on another year that we hope will be filled with adventures, new opportunities, travel, friends, and, of course, music!
Already, things are busy on the calendar. Glenn booked a bunch of shows up north, in a repeat of our “shred-to shred” adventures last year—in a nutshell, booking gigs near ski areas. It’s two for one: mixing business and fun, by bringing the music farther, hoping to make new fans and friends, and also getting in a little time on the mountains.
Upcoming shows include:
Friday, Jan. 13: Mocha Mayas, Shelburne Falls, MA
Saturday, Jan 14: Radio Bean, Burlington, VT
Sunday, Jan. 15: The Bees Knees, Morrisville, VT
Friday, Jan. 27: 51 Main at the Bridge, Middlebury, VT
Friday, Feb. 3: Parish Hall, Peterborough, NH
Wednesday, Feb 29: The Press Room, Portsmouth, NH
Check out Glenn’s calendar for more details.
Now all we need is snow! (The downside, of course, is having to travel in conditions that are great for skiing, but less than optimal for driving. So let’s hope for snow targeted precisely at the ski areas, to be exact. Am I asking too much?)
Looking back, we had a hectic and fun couple of months, spanning the holidays. I traveled to California over Thanksgiving with my friend and “coaster partner” (and a hell of a good musician/songwriter), Brian Larney, to ride our 300th roller coaster. Wanting to make it something good, we had decided on San Diego’s Giant Dipper—and it was a wonderful choice, a classic, old woodie dating back to 1925, with wonderful views of the Pacific. We spent a long weekend splitting our time between amusement parks (Knottsberry Farm, Magic Mountain) and playing LA tourist (seeing bands at the venerableWhiskey; strolling the Venice Beach boardwalk). Fun and frenetic.
The week before Christmas found Glenn and me in Turks & Caicos, relaxing on deserted beaches, eating great food, and just enjoying a break. Glenn played a couple of gigs at The Lemon Café in Grace Bay, a really nice Mediterranean restaurant with great food and really nice people. Unfortunately, the vacation ended on a down note—on the way to drop off the rental car and fly home, we stopped for lunch, and the rental car was broken into. They stole Glenn’s pedal board, but oddly did not take the laptop or the guitar, which were also in the car. Let me hasten to say that Turks and Caicos is a wonderful place, friendly and pretty safe overall, and not at all sketchy. But crimes of opportunity happen everywhere, and we created the opportunity by parking in a bad spot (blocked by a larger vehicle from view and near a half built hotel complete with a hole in the surrounding fence—hunger makes you stupid). Fortunately, we got off relatively lightly, and he doesn’t seem too bummed at having to get new toys (i.e., gear).
New Year’s Eve was Montreal, just for the hell of it. Spent the previous night in Burlington (and enjoyed better-than-expected skiing/boarding at Bolton Valley), then headed up to Montreal. We had a great meal at Le Petite Italien, recommended to us by John, the chef from The Lemon Café, in TCI, who hails originally from Montreal, and just enjoyed the beautiful city. It was cold, and a lot of shops and restaurants in Old Montreal, where we stayed, were closed (the week between Christmas and New Year, many of the locals are on vacation and close up shop for a week or two), but we had fun traveling around on the Metro, finding great little food spots (if you’re in Old Montreal, definitely hit Le Gros Jambon, a cool and casual small-diner-vibe breakfast joint with delicious food), and just enjoying the moment.
A week in, I’m back to my nine-to-five (nine-to-six, really), and Glenn is busy booking gigs and writing new songs. We’re excited for the year ahead, and hoping to continue to enjoy the good fortune we’ve been blessed with so far. And hoping the same for you!
Here’s Glenn’s latest newsletter. It’s the first one I’ve done. It ain’t fancy.
Hey friends! I’m playing some great events over the next few weeks, so hope you can come out and enjoy the music! Check my website for ongoing information…
Sat., October 15: Brian & Jeanne Horton’s 7th Annual “Acoustic Evening” – Lost Acres Vineyards, 84 Lost Acres Road, North Granby, CT, 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. RSVP to the Horton’s if you plan to attend. Bring a picnic supper and your camp chairs. $15 musician donation at the door.
Sat., October 22: Strings & Vines wine dinner, featuring five courses prepared by The Hellenic Restaurant and paired with wines from One Woman Vineyard, and a Batson guitars showcase –One Woman Wines & Vineyard, 5195 Old North Road, Southold, NY, from 7-10 p.m. Make a weekend of it—the North Fork of Long Island is especially beautiful this time of year, with farm stands and vineyards galore! (For a real treat, stay at the Coffey House Bed and Breakfast.)
Sat., October 29: Solo performance at the Riverdale Temple - 4545 Independence Avenue, Bronx, NY, at 7 p.m.
Thurs., November 10: I’ll be playing a set at Two Boots’ Indie Night, also featuring Kristen Ford, Kara Kulpa, and Kristen Graves – Two Boots of Bridgeport, 281 Fairfield Ave.
Bridgeport, CT, beginning at 9 p.m.
Sun., December 4: I’ll be returning to the Sidewalk Café on the Lower East Side of Manhattan – Sidewalk Café, 94 Avenue A at 6th St., New York, NY, 7 p.m. sharp.
What I’ve been up to…
…Just spent an awesome weekend learning about harp guitars at The 9th Annual Harp Guitar Gathering in Milford, CT. To learn more about these fascinating instruments, check out www.harpguitars.net and www.harpguitar.com.
…Writing new music, with a new CD planned for 2012. Subscribe to my YouTube Channel for a sneak peek at what I’m working on!
…Touring the Midwest, including performances with Brian Henke, Akihiro Tanaka, and Shohei Toyoda in Ohio, three sets at the Kansas State Fair, a whirlwind weekend in Nashville, and other fun stops along the way. Come along for the ride via my tour vlog!
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So much going on! We’re deep into summer, and so far it’s been pretty epic. The gigs that were upcoming in my last post are long gone (and went well), and there has been much and more in between.
The biggest news is the new guitar. Glenn is endorsing (or is it endorsed by? I’m not sure!) Batson Guitars, and is the proud player of a gorgeous Batson Grand Concert model. (It’s the one in the picture above.) Beautful tonewoods, a really striking and innovative design, and a sweet, rich tone make this guitar a honey of an instrument. People literally stop in their tracks to stare at it. We met the Batson brothers, Corey and Grant, in Long Island last year at a Batson guitar night put together by our friend George Giannaris, and they are great guys and really talented luthiers. They will go far, mark my words. For Glenn, the mutual enthusiasm and support have been really special. Check out Glenn playing his gorgeous new Batson here.
So that’s the big news. But there’s been a lot else going on. We’re just back from Provincetown. The Cape was beautiful: sunny skies, sand dunes, miles-long white beaches, bike trails, the three-mile downtown strip, as quaint as anything New England has to offer. We were there for four glorious days, camping right outside of Ptown. Glenn played Truro Vineyards, which was the “anchor gig”—a night of music, art, and inspired appetizers provided by Adrian’s Restaurant. I helped load in, stuck around for a song or two, then went and got provisions for later while Glenn did his thing.
Later was a fire on the beach (we’d gotten a permit, required, earlier in the day) under a sky filled with stars. Romantic, mesmerizing, peaceful, incredible. Such a great experience that we repeated it the following night. I love places that are relatively unaffected by light pollution—there were so many stars that even familiar constellations took on a slightly different face, and we were fortunate to catch meteor showers both nights. Surely there’s a song in there somewhere!
Outside the vineyard gig, Glenn busked in Provincetown. Provincetown is big on permits (you need a public performance permit), but at least they’re free and very easy to come by. After that, it’s just a matter of finding a good spot on the very crowded strip, which runs for three miles. We set up outside a shop that had a really nice patio and porch where people stopped to get out of the sun—the merchant kindly allowed Glenn to set up and play. A crafts fair was going on on the church grounds right next door, and drag queens marched up and down the street in flamboyant costumes promoting a show that night. Colorful and fun, that’s Ptown, with sights and sounds everywhere. Glenn’s beautful music was a nice soundtrack to the energetic, vibrant street scene unfolding and changing moment by moment. A steady stream of sightseers went by in the three hours Glenn played, often stopping to check out the music and buy a CD. It was a great experience! We already are longing to go back.
Back to Connecticut and another vineyard gig, this time at the Maugle Sierra Vineyards in Ledyard. Again, I helped load in and went adventuring while he played. I should have gone and wandered around Mystic but instead went to the nearby casino, where I managed to lose a little money. Oh well!
Spent yesterday relaxing at beautiful Devil’s Hopyard State Park on our way back home. We thought we would possibly camp one last night, but there were no sites open. Instead, we picnicked most of the day by the river, swimming in the deep wide area below beautiful Chapman Falls. Nothing like a swimming hole in the woods on a hot day!
Home again, home…
Here’s what’s coming up:
- Farmers markets galore (check the calendar for specifics)
- August 11 & 25: Chef de Farm events at Rosedale Farm in Simsbury, CT. Chef Scott Miller of Max’s Oyster Bar in West Hartford teams with local farmers, ranchers, and fishermen to create a dining experience showcasing local food and wines. Each evening begins with a wine tasting and farm tour before moving to an elegant dinner with music provided by Glenn. It’s an experience not to be missed!
- August 26, 5:30 - 8:30: Glenn plays Maugle Sierra Vineyards in Ledyard, CT. Bring a picnic supper and enjoy some local wines while relaxing on the beautiful grounds.
- September 2: Glenn performs at Sono Caffeine, right here in Norwalk, CT.
- September 7, 7 p.m.: Wizards of Acoustic Guitar (Glenn Roth, Brian Henke, Akihiro Tanaka, Shohei Toyoda) at Vino Where You Live in Mt. Vernon, Ohio. This one is not to be missed—four absolutely phenomenal players (Aki won the International Guitar Competition in Winfield last year, where these guys met).
- September 12: Glenn plays three shows at the Kansas State Fair in Hutchinson Kansas. (I’m flying out the day before and looking forward to another Kansas adventure (albeit hopefully without being in a tornado this time!).
- September 14-18: Walnut Valley Music Festival, Winfield Kansas. Back to compete in the International Fingerstyle Guitar Competition (and catch Tommy Emmanuel, among other incredible musicians, playing)!