Hi Friend, I hope you’re doing well as you read this. I’m at the Westin Hotel in Kansas City, Missouri for the Folk Alliance convention. Hundreds of folkies, singer-songwriters, booking agents, record labels, club owners, managers, you name it. If there’s a type of player in the industry related to the genre, somebody’s here representing.
It’s a really interesting phenomenon. Downstairs in the conference rooms, official showcases are played by the lucky artists who have been invited to do so (including me), and upstairs, folkies have taken over several entire floors (!) and that’s where the private showcases are held. Occupants of the rooms will host performers from 2 in the afternoon through to 2 in the morning. It’s insane. There’s a lot of pressing the flesh and trading records, schmoozing and (if you choose) boozing. It’s a lot of fun. The last time I did this fest, I WAS boozing, so I’m interested to see how things go when I can remember what I did.
I’m playing four or five times over the course of the convention, and I look forward to meeting a lot of people. For the first time, I’m staying in the same hotel that the convention is in. No Motel 6 across town for Tommy this time. I’m too old for that. I can hop onto an elevator with my guitar (no bulky coat!) while wearing my slippers and go straight to wherever I want to go without worrying where to park or forking over for a cabbie or Uber. It ain’t cheap sleeping here, but it’s convenient. Nice digs too. Flat screen TV, in-room coffee maker, my iPad with external stereo speakers to feed my current Oasis binge, (I’m probably the only person in the hotel who’s playing “Roll With It” and “Champagne Supernova” repeatedly), and just general comfortable vibe.
The fundraiser campaign for my upcoming record NAMASTE goes on. The release date has been changed to FRIDAY, MAY 20th, but contributors are getting their copies NOW (plus T-shirts, personalized songs written to order, handwritten lyrics suitable for framing, whatever you order). So if you check it out, I’m much obliged. Click here for more information.
There are shows next week in Muscle Shoals and Birmingham, AL, and the week after that in my hometown of Madisonville, KY. I hope you can make it out to one. In the meantime, think globally, act folky.