Best of 2022 – Short Plays

I’m really old-school. When it comes to music listening, I do not do Pandora or streaming music channels. The way that many people listen to music nowadays is very song focused. I still think in terms of albums and I look at an album as a cohesive statement from an artist at a certain point in history. To me, an album is like a film or a novel, all the individual songs inform the whole story or image that the […]

Ross Hammond and the Making of Midsummer Dialogues.

Last Summer my band Tumble was taking a little hiatus. During this time, I felt a real hankering to find a new music project to help fill in the void. I had been listening quite a bit to Sacramento guitarist Ross Hammond’s new album “Flow State” and really enjoying it! I remembered that Ross did quite a number of long distance collaborative albums with other artists during the initial COVID shelter in place. On a whim…I had the idea of […]

New Collaborative EP – Midsummer Dialogues

I am super happy to announce that I am releasing a new 3 song EP next week called Midsummer Dialogues. It is a collaboration with guitarist Ross Hammond. 2 voices – guitar & mbira. I can’t wait to share it with you all! Release date will be 11/11/22. More info coming soon!

Mikail Graham – On to the Other Side

Lately, my mind and heart have been set spinning by the unexpected and sudden death of my friend Mikail Graham. Of course, it’s impossible to sum up his life or my friendship with him in this little blog post. To say that he was a real giant in our local community would be such be an understatement. His life touched SO many, and my life was enriched by knowing him!! I will try to share a few bits here, specifically […]

Fear the Heart

 My old friend Scott Wiser just put out a really cool new album with his band Mount Desert. Mount Desert is a collaboration between Scott and drummer Jordan Norton. “Fear the Heart” is their second album. The record is a wild blend of thunderous heavy rock with other-worldly ambience. Scott’s production on this record is stellar! Scott asked my daughter Mei Lin and I to lay down some fiddle and mbira tracks to contribute to the world music influenced tune […]

New Tumble Video & the Evolution of a Band

From my vantage point, Tumble has gone through three distinct periods: the trio, the quartet with Bill Douglass, and the current quartet with bass player Rob Holland. Each transition has resulted in distinct changes in the evolution of the sound of the band and its musical direction.  We began playing with Rob Holland in early 2019. Rob has brought so many special new elements and influences to the group. Rob plays a variety of basses with Tumble including acoustic upright […]

Boston Ravine CD Release Concert

How might I “sum up” the last 2 1/2 years during which I co-created a bluegrass band with my daughter? From starting out as a duo, doing early gigs with some of our musical friends Walter Webb & Randy McKean, connecting with our bassist Karl Chelette and becoming a trio, co-writing songs with wife/mother Juli Marks, and recording our album during the early days of COVID shelter in place. For me, it has been a time of magic for sure! […]

Ragged Road

My daughter Mei Lin and I started playing bluegrass/old-timey fiddle tunes together around the time that she first played fiddle at 7 years of age. Although she started off learning the Suzuki method, her teacher thankfully also taught her old-time fiddle tunes from the very start. Over time, her passion for bluegrass music overtook her interest in classical music. Once she started learning “Oh Susanna”, “Cripple Creek” etc… I naturally pulled out the old guitar and started playing these tunes […]

New Boston Ravine Single – My Mama’s Heaven

Back in the summer of ’19, my family and I decided to go camping at Mill Creek in the Shasta Cascades just south of Lassen with some good friends. My wife Juli had grown up camping with her family every summer at a place called “Hole In the Ground” which is just a few miles from where we were camping. During our stay there, her mind was filled with childhood memories of camping with her extended family. She got inspired […]

Favorite Music of 2020

2020 was a “mindblower” on so many levels! During this time of uncertainty and unexpected changes, music that I listened to played such a crucial part in my emotional and spiritual life. My list of favorite albums for 2020 is “ginormous” – so much great music this year! I am therefore highlighting just a handful of my favorites from the year’s list. I decided to avoid reflecting on the more well known artists such as Bruce Springsteen, Fiona Apple, Bob […]