Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Has It Been A Year, Already?

October 15th will mark the first anniversary of my "Professional Music Career" (read unemployed), and it's definitely been a roller-coaster year. I've learned a lot from it, things that I will carry with me from now on. As anyone who runs their own business can tell you, it's a LOT OF WORK, and there's no one to pass it off to, so you end up working a lot of days from Can 'til Can't. But the self-fulfillment you get from being your own "boss" and doing things on your own is almost always worth the work. And the fact that I get to play music and get paid for it is definitely worth the work! Yes, I love my job.

As I said, it was an up and down year: the Blues visited me regularly in the last 365 days. It started out good, with a three month house gig at Vanelli's Greek & Italian Cuisine in Tupelo. We made a lot of new friends from all over the world during these months, and finally released our debut album "Lost In Mississippi" in November. A wonderful New Year's Eve show at Romie's Barbecue ended 2012 on a high note for us. As January came, I was (personally) in a transition stage, with 3 moves in 3 weeks before I finally stabilized, which was immediately followed by "The Beginning Of the End" for the Boozemobile in February. Uncertainty with my mode of transportation led me to slack on booking shows, which resulted in a slight lull in shows during the spring and summer months, though the few we had were big shows: the Third Annual Don't Be Cruel Barbecue Duel in March, the 2013 Tupelo Hog Roast in May, the H.O.G.S. Haven Fest and Bike Rally in June, an incredible release party for "Booze, Bluez, & BBQ: Live In Tupelo" on my birthday in August, and then the Prairie Arts Festival in West Point, MS, two weeks later! In September, Jason and I were part of  the U2 Tribute Concert put on by Origins Church to raise funds for underprivileged children overseas. The Bukka White Blues Festival is October 18-19 in Aberdeen, MS, and the Kevin Waide Project will be kicking off this year's festival. Mark your calendar now (cheap plug, I know!). In all, a total of 72 shows for the last twelve months. Not too bad for a boy from Tupelo, huh?

Foosh & The Milkman
The lull during the summer months was a time of mourning for us as Tim "The Milkman" Hopkins succumbed to cancer in late March. We had a private gathering with his family and closest friends the weekend of his birthday and that was a big help for us all, I believe. We hope it can become a regular thing. The Milkman was a big man and he left a big hole when he left this world. It's gonna take a lot more time to get used to him not being around. Maybe by the 10th Annual Gathering For the Milkman.

The Boozemobile finally died the end of July. I guess it wasn't built for those heavy blues.

We added a new full-time member to the band. Bassist Gavin McGee joined the Project and has been keeping the bottom fat since August. Won't you all join us in welcoming him to the fold at the next show you make. There are plenty of shows listed on the site at Go have a look and make plans. Did I mention the Bukka White Blues Festival in Aberdeen, MS? It's free. ;-)

Hills and valleys, peaks and dips, not exactly what I was looking for. I thought there would be a lot more hills, but I don't get to make the choice. The blues is a fickle mistress. She's not gonna call and see if this is a convenient time for a short visit. She's gonna just drop by, unannounced, and proclaim, "I've got six months of vacation time and I'm gonna spend every last day right here with you!"

But, you know what, that's just fine by me, 'cause, you see, she gives me inspiration, and with that, I turn 'em into songs to sing and "poof!" Another Project album done, just like that!

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