A family of music-lovers and the power of song influenced me at an early age. Growing up with parents who were teachers with wanderlust, summers free, a Volkswagen bus and an insatiable appetite for live music, meant were always on the go.
“Just like a skippin’ stone, just like a fallin’ star, it doesn’t matter where you are. As long as you’re movin’…” (from Skippin’ Stones)
We had a choir at school and I remember distinctly how life changed for me that day the string quartet from the Philadelphia Orchestra came to Pearl S. Buck Elementary to say, “Kids, you can play an instrument, too!”
My favorite song could be the one I’m writing now, a jazz standard I am learning or a ditty from the 30’s dad taught me during those long cross-country drives!
“I don’t know why, like arrows we fly. We’re barely touching the ground. Maybe because it’s more natural to fly, than to stay in one place, settled down.” (from My Special Friend)
"So trust your life to your ear. Don’t wait for no one, you’ll have to go on, because this moment is the place where it happens…” (from Monk's Straight No Chaser)
I write songs in many genres, but lately I'm really enjoying writing danceable swing tunes and learning classical vocal pieces. The songs I'm recording now on my CD with the working title “Big Time” are mostly swing tunes, with a waltz and a rockabilly tune included for good measure.
“Waltz me as the moonlight dances slowly across the river, like a painting done in three-quarter time…” (from Dreamlight)
“You’re gonna rise up singin’, then you’ll spread your wings, and take to the sky” (From Gershwin's Summertime)
My songs visit many genres (Americana, swing, blues, old country, folk, bluegrass, gospel) and interweave emotions, traveling and experiencing music. I like to think they paint a picture of the way living a musical life can touch people and continually feed our inspiration.
As a songwriter, vocalist and guitar player, I revel in the way live music builds friendships and community. Playing live music with friends at a dance is probably the best gig because you really get to be a part of a great scene and experience everyone enjoying the music.
“There’s something here bigger than each of us knows. It’s the magic of the dance and the song...” (from Dancer’s Waltz)
I am grateful to Ashokan western and swing week music camp for the friendships, skills, and inspirations gained there. And, for making friends with the Revelers (when they were still the Red Stick Ramblers). Southern music and its culture have drawn me in since those cross-country family drives listening to Old Country on the radio. I’ve found much inspiration in the music of Texas and the culture of Louisiana, where every gathering has live homegrown music, and all ages are dancing to it.
“Let’s dance to swingin’ music. Let’s laugh a lot and sing. A few good friends, a few good songs, and we have everything…” (from Crooked Road Blues)