(The title is a loving dig at Dave Lee from The Bugcast, who ribbed me for saying that I was “taping” an update for Patreon.)

I just posted a video update to Patreon, in which I discuss a guitar build, plans for an upcoming video and the songs I currently have brewing!

Plus an update on my toe.

Enjoy!

https://www.patreon.com/posts/i-taped-update-68207963

 

 

Once upon a time, there was a boy who loved making music. He taught himself piano, with a little help, then guitar, then drums and bass, and eventually some awful saxophone.

As he grew older, he started recording music and writing his own songs.

And one day, this magical thing came into his life, that let him take the notes he was playing on a keyboard, and turn them into drums and orchestras and synthesizers and thousands of other instruments.

That magical thing was called MIDI… short for Musical Instrument Digital Interface.

And the man who created MIDI was Dave Smith. And MIDI changed the way millions upon millions of people now make music.

Dave passed away today, and there is no way this now grown boy can ever properly thank him for what he created. He changed my world, and I will forever be grateful.

Rest in peace, Dave. And thank you.

I wrote this sweet, sad thing once upon a time.  I had to revisit it for possible submission for a festival performance, so I decided to marry it to an appropriate video.  I found a lovely one by Matthias Groeneveld of the Netherlands. (You can find his work here at Pixabay.)

It’s from my New Eye album, which you can get at Bandcamp for nothing.  Enjoy.

Well, I obviously do.

And if you do…. I’m working on a new track, and a video to go along with it – and I’d love to include a pic of you loving your guitar (or bass) in it. (You’ll be in the credits, of course.)

So if you’d like me to include a pic of you and your axe, just click here and shoot it to me!

(Legalese: by sending me a pic, you agree to let me use your likeness for my music video, free and clear.)

Photo courtest of Jonz Photos

Greetings to you and yours… I hope this finds you well at the start of a new year that, I HOPE, won’t be as crazy as the past couple have been.

I thought that my 60th birthday would be a good time to reconnect with you all, and give you an update.

(Hard to believe that number – but here I am still kicking around!)

What I’ve been up to, musically speaking:

First off – as I do each year, I released my New Year’s eve video ode to you all on Facebook, YouTube and my website.  I’ve been doing it since about 2010, and you can see it here.

COVID has stopped me from playing out live at all.  I have done so precisely once since December of 2019, which feels like a lifetime ago.  Julian is only 4, and cannot be vaccinated, so I can’t take any chances.  As it stands, I can’t visit him without a mask, which is hard – when you just want to kiss your own kid.

So I’ve been hunkered down, working from home, trying to stay healthy and sane, and over the past year, I have been working on about 10 tracks… plus writing a bunch more.  I’ve also started rough-scripting some videos (If you saw the “Into Each Life” video, you know how much fun I have with these!)

My new virtual “tip jar”

For my 60th birthday, I’ve decided to start a new Patreon virtual “tip jar” – where I share the music and video work I’m doing (there’s also a “back catalog” of a couple of years of older content to boot.) As you may have seen, I decided last year to give all of my music away – but ongoing support and connection matter, especially in a time of such isolation. To drag out the old trope – it’s $5 per month, which is far less than you spend on coffee – but you’ll get access to what I’m working on, and support me in the process. For more information on that, or to join in:

(I will be donating 5% of my proceeds to the Ulster County SPCA – they do amazing work in my area, and get no funding from the ASPCA.)

In the meantime, as I said – you can go take any of my music for free, or PWYC (pay what you can). Just go to my Bandcamp page, where all you need to provide is your email address, and you can have it all.

I’m proud to say that I’m working with the amazing and super-talented singer-songwriter Rebecca Martin on a series of spoken-word videos to be released later in the month, that coincide with the release of her latest album. The readings were performed remotely by 11 women from across the globe.  It’s a remarkable project, and I’m grateful to have a small part in it.

In closing…

I truly DO hope you and yours are OK.  These have been trying times for everyone, and all we can do is stay strong, try to stay well and support each other through it.  There IS light at the end of the tunnel, and it’s NOT an oncoming train.

Promise.

Much love to all,

Mark