New Year, Old Favorites

I just received an email from the Tucson Kitchen Musicians Association saying:

Congratulations! The Tucson Kitchen Musicians Association  (TKMA) is pleased to invite Darrell Elmer Rodgers  to perform at the 34th Annual Tucson Folk Festival.

You are scheduled to perform at 3:00 PM on Sunday, April 7th on the Presidio Museum (At Presidio San Agustin del Tucson).  

So, here we go again!  This will be my 11th year (in a row) performing at the festival, which happens to be one of the nation’s largest FREE Folk Festivals.   THOUSANDS of people enjoy it every year (about 12,000 I think).  Over the two days April 6 & 7, roughly 120 acts will perform 30-minute sets across five stages.  On Saturday night, “Red Molly” – a national act, takes the main stage, and on Sunday night, our dear friend Heather Hardy (aka “Lil Mama”)  brings her wonderful band for an hour of superb bluesy music.

I’m performing on the Presidio Museum stage that’s located as shown:

I hope you’ll come enjoy the festival and stop by to see and hear our show.

///Darrell
Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Advertisements
Posted in Events, Folk, General Conversation, Guitars, Music, Music BUSINESS, Music Performance, songwriter | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Songwriter Showcase in Scottsdale- Christmas+1 day

Arizona friends, I’ll be performing the day after Christmas (Dec 26th) as part of a Songwriter Showcase at Pho Cao (Vietnamese restaurant) in Scottsdale AZ.  What a nice break from all the Christmas hubbub and traditional Christmas carols, not to mention heavy foods like turkey and dressing, etc.  Come take a break from it all and hear some home-grown music and enjoy some cuisine that soothes (not to mention a libation or two if you’re so inclined).

It’s part of a regular series hosted by our friend Shan Jam Crane and the WILD Banchees who cap off the evening. I’ll be on for about 30-minutes starting just after 8 PM. We’d love to see you!

Everybody needs a little break don’t you think?

///Darrell
Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in Events, Folk, General Conversation, Music, Music Performance, songwriter | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Laveen Folk Festival – 17 November

I will be there! I perform at 11:30 AM on the the “Laveen (East) Stage”.

This is a pioneering event in that it is (I believe) the first Folk Festival in Laveen (at least in a very long time).  It’s the brainchild of my friend Bea Graves and her partners Odie Piker and James Sallis, of the trio “Three Legged Dog” – a must see by the way.  (you can also find them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Three-Legged-Dog-185057234838111/

If you look on the schedule, you’ll see the names of many friends of mine who are also performing.  The show runs from 10 AM until 2 PM at the “Old Laveen Ranch” 2800 W. Dobbins Road, Laveen, AZ 85339 – where they host a regular Farmer’s Market.  So come prepared to shop for goodies – including CDs!

For me, the best part will be visiting with all these wonderful people, especially my Grand Daughters who live right there in Laveen!  BONUS for ME!  And I’m looking forward to meeting many new people from out that way! So c’mon down folks! It’ll be fun.

///Darrell
Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in Events, Folk, General Conversation, Guitars, Music, Music Performance, songwriter | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

’til God Forgets

Well, I completed a recording of my latest song “’til God Forgets” and it’s here for your enjoyment:

Lord knows I struggle with recording. Maybe it’s a mental block. Maybe it’s just the frustration of not getting things to sound like I want them to sound.  But it sure wears me out!  Somewhere between “this sucks” and “good enough” lies “it’ll have to do”.  Maybe I will come back to this song and tweak it a bit more. Maybe I’ll just leave it.  In the words of Dr. McCoy, “Dammit Jim, I’m a songwriter not a recording engineer!”

There are some good lines in this song. I came up with chorus some time ago.
“I’m runnin of caffeine and cigarettes, in a zig zag pattern on trains and jets. Give Saint Peter my regrets, I gotta keep runnin ’til God forgets.” 

Like so many song ideas that pop into my head, these lyrics just laid around until I realized they fit a boogie riff I like to play (almost Arthur Smith’s Guitar Boogie, but not quite).  Once I put them together, the rest was relatively easy. But the song does take a slightly different course than one might expect of an “I’ve goofed up” lament. Here, the subject’s “big mistake” was telling her he loved her and then running away when the love was reciprocated. Idiot!

I’m looking forward to the day when I can get the trio to do this one.  With a REAL bassist and a REAL drummer, this tune could really get folks dancing!

///Darrell
Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in blues, Folk, General Conversation, Guitars, Music, Music Performance, Music Recording, songwriter | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Let’s call it SOME progress

Last time I posted about getting back into creative mode with songwriting and production.  Well, I’ve done the songwriting half of that, so I’m claiming SOME progress.

Jammin’ with Jane Murdock

I even performed my latest new song for our Folk-singing friend from Arizona, Jane Murdock who paid us a visit at the end of July.  It was good to see one of the “ol gang of mine” here at our outpost in New Mexico. Jane’s been singing folk songs for decades and does some great songs.

I played a new song for her called “’til God Forgets” that’s built around a riff inspired by that old classic “guitar boogie” recorded by Arthur Smith back in 1945 (not quite the same, but similar). The key chorus lyrics include:
“I’m runnin’ on caffeine and cigarettes,
a zig-zag pattern in trains and jets,
give Saint Peter my regrets,
I gotta keep runnin’ ’til God forgets!”

Now, the other part of my “goal”, production, hasn’t been so successful. It seems my iMac has good days and bad – kind of like me. I’m not sure whether to replace the RAM, or bite the bullet for a new machine – decision, decisions.  I really want to get this new tune recorded so you can hear the whole thing. It’ll be another “get up and dance” number for sure.

Organ Mountains – East side

My bride and I have been out and about here in New Mexico these past several weeks, just getting to know our new area. We visited Cloudcroft, up in the mountains, and explored the east side of the Organ Mountains (thanks to access to the White Sands Missile Range). We went for a fabulous steak at Chala’s Wood Fire Grill in Messilla, NM and caught our friend Jamie O’Hara doing a set on the patio.  Jamie’s one of the hardest working musicians around and puts on the miles to get the gigs. Last place we saw Jamie was at Sparkys up in Hatch, NM (where they grow those hot green chilis!).  That’s another place I recommend – smoked meats and live music. What could be better?

///Darrell
Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in Folk, General Conversation, Guitars, Music, Music Performance, Music Recording, songwriter | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Back on track with a new track

“OK, Break’s over! Back on your heads!” – that’s a punch line from an old joke about hell. And it almost applies here.

After my last post, I fired up my aged iMac and began the process of finishing production of a song I started recording years ago.  Give a listen to “Listen to Your Heart” below.

The Darrell Elmer Rodgers TRIO (with Rick Heyman & Michael Parker) performs this live and at a slightly slower tempo and with a nice intro.  But that stretches the song to over 5 minutes.  This version is closer to 4.

I wrote the guitar hook on this one back around 2002. The first verse followed a year or so later. But then it languished, waiting for me to figure out where it would go. Funny how hard times make for good songs. I lost my job in in 2015 and the demoralizing process of enduring unanswered applications and remaining unemployed for over a year stood in stark contrast to the encouragement and loving patience of my dear bride and the laughter and joy provided by my daughters and grand children. The experience seemed to crystallize the lyrics in my mind.  I guess you could say it’s a song of grateful resignation and hope.

So today, with a new job in a new city, I need now to crank up the creativity work and get back to song writing and, frustratingly, production. On this old slow struggling hardware, recording and production is a bit hellish for me.  But even a broken clock gets it right twice a day.

So this guy dies and gets sent to hell where he sees everyone standing in sewage up to their knees, but they’re all chatting, laughing, drinking coffee, and eating delightful pastries and he thinks “this ain’t so bad!”.  Suddenly the devil appears and says:
“OK, Break’s over! Back on your heads!”

///Darrell
Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in Folk, General Conversation, Music, Music BUSINESS, Music Performance, Music Recording, songwriter | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Summertime Blues

Well, the Folk Festival is a month behind us and I haven’t done much, musically speaking, since then – just a couple performances here at the house. I don’t know if it’s waxing age or waning inspiration, but my vitality seems to have ebbed a bit.  Maybe it’s just the Summertime Blues, and we ALL know there’s no cure for THAT.

I started writing a new song back before the Folk Festival that the guys (Rick and Michael) really liked, but Michael and I both knew we could not perform it in public in Arizona (even though, as Rick pointed out, Tucson may have been the safest city to do so).  You see, it’s called “Sexy Gun” and it’s written from the perspective of a totally honest assault rifle owner who knows that technically, his new weapon is no different than any other rifle he owns, except for its appearance. Yep, it’s sexy.
Lyrics excerpt: “I got me a sexy gun, yes it’s a sexy gun,
it’s black and mean and guaranteed to scare everyone.

I made a modification to my studio a couple months ago. I replaced two mic stands with booms mounted to my recording bench.  It really cleared the floor area for easily rolling my new chair.  Now if I could just get my aging electronics (primarily my 9-year-old iMac) to work as well. That computer’s software has been upgraded darn near to inoperable.  Maybe it too, has a case of the Summertime Blues. And “there ain’t no cure for the Summertime Blues”.

///Darrell
Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in blues, Folk, General Conversation, Music, Music BUSINESS, Music Performance, Music Recording, songwriter | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment