Music City Roots/flood fallout/kickstarter

Posted in music on 05/07/2010 by kevingordonsblog

set list, 5-5-10
set list from wednesday

So good to see so many folks out at the Loveless on Wednesday night for the Music City Roots show. What a great experience–the crew and staff treated us really well; the relaxed yet professional vibe made it easy to focus on the performance, instead of the minor stuff that sometimes gets in the way.  I ate too much of what is perhaps the best fried chicken in the world, though tried to counter that with some green beans and asparagus, and a one biscuit limit. Wonderful to hang with, and hear, my friends The Wrights, Stephen Simmons, and Elizabeth Cook. It doesn’t happen as often as I’d like. Other than my forehead being “anointed”  by some fast-disappearing bird of absurdity (strange bit of fate) while I was standing in the parking lot, and tripping up the stairs to the stage right before doing the post-set interview with Craig Havighurst, it couldn’t have been a better day. We rocked . . . maybe a little hard for some out in the crowd. But after last weekend, and all the collective fear, loss, and sorrow, it just felt right to let the wild animal out of the bag. Hats off to Bill Cody for delivering what stands as the best introduction I’ve ever had–except for maybe Horace “Hoss” Logan’s (R.I.P.)introducing my band at Enoch’s in Monroe back in the late 80s, which remains one of the most surreal experiences I’ve had without the aid of chemicals in this lifetime.

NOTE: Wednesday’s show will be rebroadcast in full quality TONIGHT, Friday 5/7, at 9:00p CST, at WSM 650 AM, or at musiccityroots.com (Because of storm-related issues, Wednesday’s live broadcast didn’t sound so good.)

I can’t adequately describe to those of you outside of Nashville just how perversely beautiful the weather was here on Monday, the day after the flood that devastated many areas in and around the city. Bright sun, blue sky, mild . . . all you’d want from a Spring day. And it’s been that way since. I think that’s one reason that it’s been difficult for some who did not suffer significant loss from the flood to process the fact that the city is still very much in a crisis state; that it is crucial, for example, to conserve water. Thanks to all of you who’ve written/posted, expressing concern, and helped to spread the word  around the ‘net about what’s going on here. Your donations, be they in the form of cash or action, toward the recovery effort are much needed and appreciated.

And because of what happened last week, I’m having a hard time even bringing this up: even though the timing is absolutely terrible, I’ll be announcing the start of my Kickstarter campaign very soon. Look at this as more of a pre-sale campaign than a fundraiser; with your donations you will in effect by pre-purchasing that download, or CD, etc. that you’d buy eventually anyway (I’d hope), and will be helping to finance the completion and promotion of my new record, Gloryland.  I am fully cognizant of the various disasters affecting the world, be they in Haiti, on the Gulf coast, or here in Nashville–but I have to keep things moving forward. And it is no news to anyone that the music business has been turned upside down crazy in the last few years; many artists in my position are undertaking similar efforts just to get their recordings made and released. Much time and effort has been spent on this project, and I want to finish it and have it heard by as many people as possible. It’s a piece of work I’m extremely proud of, thanks in most part to the mind-blowing production of (recent Dove Award-winning) Joe McMahan, and his tireless efforts to make this record the very best it can be, without regard to the expectations of any genre, market, or audience–simply trying to fulfill the vision that the songs suggest. It’s the most ambitious recording I’ve made yet, and it has not been a quick and easy one. But we are “in the short rows” now, and I’m simply grateful for having the opportunity to make this music, with many talented players who’ve given so much. As last weekend’s weather made all too obvious, our lives can be lost, or rendered unrecognizable, on any given day. Sheer grace, that they are given.

Music City Roots show

Posted in music, nashville flood on 05/05/2010 by kevingordonsblog

Hi all,

At the risk of being redundant, I’ll repost this from my fb page:

The Music City Roots show is ON at the Loveless tonight…a FREE show, asking all to come out with donations of money, food, supplies, pet supplies, etc. All gate proceeds will go to the Community Fund – www.cfmt.org
Join me, with my fellow eastside pals The Wrights, Stephen Simmons, and Elizabeth Cook, here, or on the air tonight at 7pm CST! Live at 650 AM(WSM), or worldwide at musiccityroots.com

Thanks to all of you who have asked about us; somehow we came out of it all just fine, except for a few small leaks in the basement, which I was able to fix as they happened. My new neighbors across the street didn’t fare so well, though–they had water pouring into their finished basement, coming in right behind their breaker box. My taking an extension ladder over so that they could unclog their gutters felt like a pretty useless gesture, given what they were dealing with, with knee-high water at the back of their house coming in. Needless to say, we feel extremely lucky. Most folks right around us did all right, I think–it’s MUCH worse in other parts of town. There are numerous ways in which you can contribute to the relief effort; please do so if you can. If you’re in town, come out to the Loveless tonight; again, it’s a free show, and they are accepting donations of all kinds. Or if you can’t be there in person, listen in on musiccityroots.com, or WSM radio, 650AM.

website

Posted in music on 04/20/2010 by kevingordonsblog

Hi everyone,

A number of you have informed me that you’re having trouble with kevingordon.net. I took the issue up with my web host this morning, and it appears to be a DNS-related problem. I’ve made the changes they’ve recommended, but I don’t think the fix will be immediate. But please don’t hesitate to let me know if you’re having trouble with the site loading, etc.  The confusing thing is that I can see it fine on all the computers in my house, and it’s not a cached version I’m seeing.  It loads just fine. I don’t understand how this happens, but supposedly, the problem will go away. Soon.

More later–thanks for your patience.

kg

live & unreleased, entropy & endorphins etc.

Posted in music on 04/13/2010 by kevingordonsblog

Been trying to keep up the pace with frequent postings here, but I’ve been working on other things–including the long-threatened “live & unreleased” tracks compilation.  The music’s being mastered as I type, and I’m looking forward to hearing what the geniuses over at Yes Master have done. As of now, the tracks date from 1994-2009; various live recordings, and demos recorded either in studio or at home. This will be a limited-run release, and will be a part of the pre-release campaign for the ‘real’ new record–details coming soon.

When I get tired of fishing thru the swelling pile of bills, CDs, and tax return docs quickly covering my desk these days like kudzu, I go check out the garden. Or go for a run, which sometimes just makes you want to keep on running. I was out on the greenway yesterday, endorphins kicking in, feeling great but wondering if I was about to become a cardio-pulmonary emergency, when a slow-moving cyclist came toward me, with some kinda ghetto blaster up loud. And what ear-gift was I given when he passed?  “Babe”, by Styx!!! I thought I was gonna fall down laughing.

Back to the garden: I’ve planted some snow peas, cantaloupe, brussel sprouts; jalapeno, anaheim, and bell peppers. The lettuce we grew last Fall has come back with a vengeance. Want to grow some blackeyes or crowders, too, and some tomatoes.  I’m also cultivating what I hope will be a nice income tax refund, but doubt I’ll click the e-file button by 4/15.

Hope to see you in Iowa City and/or Chicago this weekend! In the meantime, come sail away . . .

“good evening, neighbors . . . good evening, sidewalk strangers . . .

Posted in music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on 04/10/2010 by kevingordonsblog

good evening police helicopter, too.”

Thanks to all of you who came down to the Wash to hear us last night.  Thought it would be a slow one when I first arrived, but was relieved to see you all there when we got up to play. But no matter who was taking the stage, I was so glad to see so many supporting the Wash, especially given the recent violence.  Playing “Black Dog”, “Crazy Mixed Up World”, and “One I Love” took on an (unfortunate) new urgency that didn’t hit me til we started “Black Dog”. Thanks to East Precinct for increasing their presence on the corner, at least temporarily–I hope it continues. Here’s the set list, or something closely resembling it:

  1. I’m Ready, Willing, Able (Fats Domino)
  2. Church House
  3. Find My Way
  4. Watching the Sun Go Down
  5. Tearing It Down
  6. Illinois 5 a.m.
  7. Casino Road
  8. Colfax
  9. Black Dog
  10. Crazy Mixed Up World
  11. Keep Your Hands Off Her (Leadbelly)
  12. One I Love

For those of you not there, I had Joe McMahan, Ron Eoff, and Marty Lynds playing with me. Kat Jones, though at the time on the clock, slinging shepherd’s pies and pints,  got up and sang on “One I Love”; she’s on the version that’s on the new record, and she sounds great.  Last night I introduced her as a fantastic vocalist, but she is also a very cool songwriter and artist.

Yesterday afternoon it was my great pleasure to participate in the East Academy Middle School’s first “poetry slam”–though in spirit it resembled a gathering of Beats more than anything (minus the chemicals and the haze). James Brown and jazz playing between poets, finger-snapping applause (unless clapping was requested by the reader).  I read a Denis Johnson poem, Sway; it’s always been a favorite–it’s a sonnet that, after a very conventional, kinda Victorian-sounding first line, (“Since I find you will no longer love”) explodes into something all its own. It was the first time I’d read any poetry in front of an audience in years. I was nervous, and it wasn’t even my own work.  Maybe at next month’s reading I’ll step up and read something of mine. I’d brought one, published in a journal 20 years ago–but soon as I looked at it I was wanting to revise it. It never ends, til it all ends, I guess; thank God. Let’s be careful out there.

early april and the tree

Posted in music on 04/07/2010 by kevingordonsblog

blooms white around the same time every year, give or take a few days. I don’t know what species it is, though having lived with it for so long, you’d think I’d have done my homework by now. I do know that it shares the backyard with a hackberry and two pecan trees–one of which is the largest of its kind I’ve ever seen. Each Spring, as a kind of  quiet ritual,  I try to photograph this small unknown tree at night, during the brief time that it’s covered in blooms–when the streetlight in the alley casts it in such a weird glow. Last night I tried again, but shouldn’t have relied on my phone camera for something like this. (duh!) The best ones are from a few years ago, taken on April 1st, 2006; here’s one of them, with a crescent moon sitting way up there, seen between the branches.  Soon enough, probably tonight when the storms blow through, it will drop all those flowers and return to its more usual modesty, just standing there by the back gate, offering a little shade to the ground beneath it, as the summer heat and long daylight sky come on.

the move

Posted in Uncategorized on 04/06/2010 by kevingordonsblog

I’ve been away from the blogging habit for some time. Didn’t plan it that way; life has been in the way, or I’ve let it get that way. So, this marks a return, and a renewal . . . and a move to wordpress, which I hope to learn much more about as I continue to plow forward here.

As many of you know, I am in the midst of completing a new recording; it is taking longer to finish than anyone involved (or not) could imagine. Some of this has been good–taking the time to work a while, then rest the ears, then go back. And function seems to follow form in this case–this is a more densely layered record, not so much a deliberate effort at catching a great live performance, as building a great sonic-cinematic track that delivers the song in the most fulfilled way possible. I think any and all approaches to recording can be valid . . . depends on the songs you’re working with, and the people/place/time involved.  I am tentatively calling the record “Gloryland”; if you’ve been to a live show in the last couple of years, you might’ve heard me/us play the song of the same title. The more I thought about it, the more it made sense as the title of the whole shebang. More about that later.

Very soon I’ll begin a pre-sale campaign, attempting to raise funds for the completion and promotion of the record. You’ll be able to find out more info (and do some of that pre-ordering) via my music site, http://www.kevingordon.net   Your participation will be greatly appreciated. I will gradually be changing the site, too, employing the wordpress platform and abandoning the iWeb-constructed monster that is there now (holy hurry-up-and-wait, batman).  I am doing all of this myself, as well as my own booking, promo, etc., so though the pace of progress of all these endeavors might feel a bit lazy, the ironic twist is that I am working as hard as I can every day to get all of this done.

Thanks, as ever, for your support, and lately, for your patience. Good things are coming.