After a hiatus The Gaslight Tinkers will be releasing a new full length recording in the fall or ’18 featuring Trinidad’s Choc’late Allen. Stay tuned and check out The Gaslight Tinkers.
Zoe, Garrett, Dave, and I are moving along with the Tinkers. Fiddle tune, afro pop, raggae, funk jam. Be a part of the movement. Check out this link to our page www.thegaslighttinkers.com.
Here’s a bit of live stuff from a performance in Amherst, MA
The last four months have been filled with lots of work on a fun project. With help from the Symonds School community and a grant from the Putnam Foundation, I produced a CD entitled “Peace, Place”. It’s a compilation of original, traditional, and covered songs about peace, cooperation and sense of place in out school community. We recorded 320+ kids singing various songs in lots of styles. After all the recording, it still kills me to listen to their voices. The project will benefit my music program. Go HERE to check out how to order a cd and give to this project!
Very excited about a new collaboration with Garrett Sawyer, formerly of the reggae funk band the Alchemystics and the great fiddler Zoe Darrow. Afro beat, reggae, funk, fiddle tune jam band with a wall of percussion called Gaslight Tinkers. Check us out on Facebook.
Next event will be April 12 in Northampton.
Here’s a fun photo from a few weeks back. Peter with Dar Williams, Pete Seeger, mentor and old pal Rick Nestler and David Amram.
So many great things going on as the leaves change. Check out the calendar for dances and concerts-
Our 4 part harmony singing, swinging year long project has finally arrived. Anna Patton on clarinet, Erica Morse on bass, Naomi Morse on fiddle, and me…
Check out the Housetop website www.housetopband.com
I can’t say that I won a grammy but my mandolin playing does appear to be on this Pete Seeger kids cd…
Click here to read the article
Some Space Age Vaudeville from the Dance Flurry with Jay Mankita, Naomi Morse, Sam Zucchini, and Jean Rohe
My grandfather, an optician owned a shop down on Canal St in NYC. He was the kind of guy that saved the old glass frames and didn’t always have the latest styles. One might say he was kind of cheap in that way. Today you might say that the frames he kept in his shop were “retro”. To young 70’s Brooklynites Jay Unger and Lyn Hardy I think they were what they opted to wear. My father was working for my grandfather when Jay and Lynn would cross the East River, get their wire rimmed frames and chat. I have visions of them playing tunes right in the middle of the shop. When established in friendly relationship with my father they gave him one of their LP’s and invited them to one of their gigs in the suburbs. That album would get played by me and my sister almost daily. We’d stomp around the house to “Rocky Road Cindy” and various rowdy fiddle tunes making the record skip. Over the years we would encounter Jay and Lyn in other settings.
I grew up in a musical family. My grandfather a classical violinist, my mother taught piano. My mother connected with Pete Seeger when she called him to sing at my sister’s nursery school. Instead of a “yes” she got an earful about a budding organization called Clearwater. Pete talked about the boat that he planted the seeds for a few years back to get people rallied around cleaning up the river. He solicited her help in starting a local Yonkers chapter of the group. I was 2 or 3; the beginning of a life devoted to folk music and environmentalism thanks to Pete. But I digress. Fast forward a bit. At the Clearwater annual meetings held at a rustic camp in Beacon, NY I would always look forward to a square dance. led by Jay and Lyn. The people I knew and loved from the the community danced. It was a meeting of the generations and a celebration of something larger. Much the way I imagine old barn dances in small towns throughout the country happening; folks getting together after a harvest or a weeks work and celebrating with a dance. Perhaps I idealize the event as I was young and it was perhaps the happiest of childhood memories, but I distinctly remember the jovial, beginner quality to the event. I was hooked.
To be continued….
Here’s the Scoop:
Housetop’s cd is on the way in the coming weeks. Check out www.myspace.com/onthehoustop for the 4 part harmony old time swingin sound of Peter, Anna Patton, Erica Morse, and Naomi Morse.
If you listen carefully you can hear the distant mandolin tracks of Peter on Pete Seeger’s new CD “Tomorrow’s Children”, recorded with Peter and a bunch of 4th graders in Beacon, NY
Also….gearing up for some great showcases at the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance in the Catskills the 2nd week of November.
As always, check by the calendar. Lots of local dancing and singing– Greenfield MA, Concord MA, Brattleboro VT, New York NY, Saratoga, NY. See you on the dance floor and in the streets.
Welcome to my online home. Stay awhile!
The Fall has been beautiful in Green River, VT. Come out and visit me in real life sometime. Just came back from a fun show in Manhatten, a Sloop Singer reunion concert in Beacon, NY, and I’m back to the Catskills this weekend for The Northeast Regional Folk Alliance!
As the world is turned upside down by those incredulous corporate cats capitalizing on the core of American ignorance and hatred, I choose to stay home, not ignoring what ails us but dealing with it by loving my kids, composting my poop, and singing. Please join me in celebrating what does not ail us at a dance or a concert sometime.
By golly, I heard peepers last night! Yey!
Lots of fun stuff ahead in the Spring, mostly locally…..The Rendezvous in Turners Falls on 4/2, dances, workshops festivals and concerts in the summer. Check out my dates.
Spring’s almost here! Car sh-t the bed, we’re down to one income again AND we’re moving back to our shack in VT (well, in June)! Yey. Composting toilet here we come. This time with 2 kids, one in diapers. So much easier to be a country idealist when you’re young and newly married. Back to our roots. Can you keep yourself away from box stores when you have 2 kids and you live on a dirt road miles from one? Stay tuned…
In any event, lots of fun stuff ahead in the Spring, mostly locally…..The Rendezvous in Turners Falls on 4/2, dances, workshops and a Housetop concert in NYC. 4 Part harmony swing. Check out my dates.
In the face of this so called recession we’re going through there is still so much here for which to be thankful in the new year. Not the least of which will occur on January 20th. There will always be songs to sing and tunes to play. That said, please think of the innocent people being hurt and dying in the West Bank and around the world.
I hope to see you out dancing or at a concert somewhere. Check back for some new upcoming gigs in January and February.
Come to Concord, MA on Thursday and Greenfield, MA Sat for dancing with me, Britany, Kristen, and Stuart. The Beverwyck String Band. 15 Years and still going!
Hope from Chicago. I seem to spend my share of time around there these days. As Chicagoen Studs Terkel passed away last week, I came to think about that great city in the middle of the country. A lot has come from there. It’s a mixed bag of power, great minds, great music, great architecture, great political machines and corruption. A microcosm of our great nation. I went to see the Chicago middle aged hipster Ira Glass last night in Northampton, MA. He is all about hope. Like Studs the stories he brings to life every week keep us real. There is power in the narrative. As I am hoping that my friends are patient about certain changes to come, I have hope for after January 20th for that Chicago community organizer–you know who. That said, as the robber barons try to grab their final riches before they retreat to their scheming caves (the G20 seemed to indicate MORE deregulation?? Sure, just throw the problem at the problem), let us not forget other University of Chicago boys that brought the world this set of outcomes. Old Milton Friedman. Dead but not gone.
Outside of Chi-land, life is also good up here in the happy valley. Kind of feels like being in the eye of a hurricane though. As I drive to NH to teach at the elementary school every day I see gas prices plummeting and business as usual. It’s hard to feel the realty of things in this little bubble. I think of my kids. That’s what keeps it all real. That’s what keeps me hoping
I hope to see you out dancing or at a concert somewhere.
For an interesting little blog piece about an old song of mine , check out:
If you’d like to listen to some tunes, there’s always myspace (for better or for worse):