S. J.’s Blog

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Big Gratitude

Nov 26, 17

I’m home from the #MusesontheRoad tour, and it was as beautiful a dream-come-true as I could have ever lived.  We’re all home safe and sound, we all still love each other, and we did far better than break even on everything.  If this sounds far from the norm, I think it is, though I don’t think it should be.  Everyone I know and love certainly deserves the kind of happiness and success that Renée, RJ, Ginger, Lynda, and I experienced together over the past several weeks on the road.

We had two more sold-out shows (thank you, Portland!) as well as crowds that were all in with every note, everywhere we went, even in Albuquerque on a Tuesday night.  It was bliss, y’all.  I am more than a little sure that we’ll be doing this again sometime, and I live for that day.  We even got some down-time at the Quileute Oceanside Resort in La Push, Washington, walking along the wild shoreline and watching agog from our suite’s back deck as fierce little fishing boats rode the surf resulting from an offshore tropical storm! Talk about intense!  Our thanks extend to the Quileute tribe for sharing the beauty of their coastline land with us.  Learn more about the tribe and the reservation here

 

 

#musesontheroad retreat time in #lapush 🌊🌊💙 #thewildcoast #quileute #grateful #ocean #lasirene #waves

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Keep an eye on my YouTube channel– I’ll be posting more song clips from the #MusesontheRoad live streams very soon.

This #BlacklivesmatterFriday weekend is rife with awesome hashtags like #shopsmall and #optoutside.  I shared an emotional live video on Facebook this morning because my heart was overflowing a bit.  We’re all connected, and for me and my indie music colleagues, every little download really does count.  Some people may not believe me, but it’s true.  I’m just so grateful, every day, for each and every person who appreciates my music.  It helps that we still number only in the tens of thousands, I think, which are numbers I can reasonably wrap my brain around.  🙂  The truth is that this sweet life of mine wouldn’t be possible without folks who believe in scrappy, fierce indie songwriters- that would be you.  

 

So thank you, again and again, for being here. 

 

Here’s my Krampus carol in case you find a use for one. 🙂 ‘Tis the season, after all.

 

#MusesontheRoad tour, week 1 complete!

Nov 2, 17

I’m writing from the back of the tour van this morning, as we cross Wyoming on I-80.  It’s a clear, brisk day.  This part of the country is RJ’s old stomping grounds, so we’re all in a great mood, learning stuff about the terrain from her as we drive.  

We’ll perform in Sunset, UT at my favorite place, The Hidden Sage, this evening- plenty of seats left for anyone who’d like to pay at the door!

This trip has been every bit as much of a dream come true as we all thought it would be so far.  We began one week ago with our first online show, which had a great viewing crowd and gave us a solid starting budget for the whole tour.   It also gave each of us a mood & confidence boost about having learned each other’s tunes.  We kicked things off and everything sounded great!  It was really happening!


 

The great crowds continued once our live shows began, starting with our hometown concert on October 27 in Fayetteville.  Fayetteville is currently the hometown of 3/5 of the performers in this van, but I feel like I can claim it a little bit for myself as well.  I have a lot of hometowns. 🙂 My husband and his folks were able to attend the Fayetteville show, and Lynda’s mama even made it out to see us in Kansas City on October 28, thanks to her sweet neighbors!  We also have had so much heart-family in our audiences so far, everywhere feels like home.  

“We’re just all making such good decisions together,” Renée said a few seconds ago from the front seat.  She’s so right.  This kind of synergy doesn’t come along every day- unless you make space for it to happen.  And so, here we are, crossing the high desert, watching for signs of antelope in the hills as we pass.

Our Omaha concert on October 29th was the fourth of four in a row, and the Unity church of Omaha were such kind hosts to us.  Their sanctuary/stage space was so beautiful that I’m certain it helped me relax and perform really well that night.  We took some extra time in Nebraska to sleep, eat, shop, and reset before our day’s drive to Colorado on October 30th.  

Halloween was our acclimation day in Denver (singing in the Mile High City is a lot easier if you give your body time to adjust to the altitude, I have learned).  We slept in, ran errands, and went out to sushi in the evening (all of this in costume for me) with my beloved Rubiee, proprietress of Dryad Tea and Dryad Pottery.  That night was Rubiee’s mom’s birthday, and so she joined us!  Give Sushi Totoro in Aurora a try if you’re ever in the area.  Yum.

Last night in Denver, thanks to Living Earth House, we had our very first sold-out show of the trip.  The crowd was so very engaged, enthusiastic, and tuned in.  We could not have asked for better.  We’re expecting a small crowd in Utah tonight, and I’m looking forward to seeing some of Utah’s gorgeous landscape on the way in this afternoon.

Read on for the rest of our tour dates, which will be in Oregon, Washington state, and New Mexico, starting with our first of two Portland shows this coming Sunday night.

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#MusesontheRoad Tour details!

Oct 11, 17

I’m counting down the days, fam!

My next online concert will be on October 26, and it’ll be the kickoff show for the #MUSESONTHEROAD tour, which crosses eight states between October 26 and November 22.  This tour will be the trip of a lifetime for me, as I’ll be sharing it with Ginger Doss, Renée Janski, Ronda Jean, and Lynda Millard, all of whom have brought so much more music and magic into my life.  This is the first time we’ve gotten to book a whole set of shows TOGETHER, all of us at once, and it’s going to be very special.  I hope we’ll see you out there somewhere.  

Here are all the dates, with info linked for each one:

#MUSESONTHEROAD TOUR 2017

OCT 26: ONLINE KICKOFF CONCERT

OCT 27: FAYETTEVILLE, AR

OCT 28: KANSAS CITY

OCT 29: OMAHA

NOV 1: DENVER

NOV 2: SUNSET, UT

NOV 5: PORTLAND, OR

NOV 8: MID-TOUR ONLINE CONCERT

NOV 9: SILVERDALE, WA

NOV 10: SILVERDALE, WA

NOV 15: REDMOND, WA (with cello goddess Betsy Tinney!)

NOV 17: PORTLAND, OR

NOV 18: TACOMA, WA

NOV 21: ALBUQUERQUE, NM

We’ve created Facebook events for the first half and the second half of the tour, also.  Come join the discussion there if you like!

If you’ve read this far, thank you SO MUCH! Lol!  I appreciate each and every one of you more than I can say.  Your support keeps my world turning, truly, and it makes such a huge difference to all of us who walk our musical path as independents.  You’re the best, and I hope you can make it to one of the online shows or live shows coming up.

Betsy’s New Record!

Oct 5, 17

Best news ever!! I have a Betsy visiting me, and so I’ve been on the periphery of her preparations for the release of her second albumchild.  It’s called Wyverns in the Winery and it’s so rich and fun!  Here’s a taste, with your Sooj on hand percussion:

 

I’ve been a fan of Betsy’s work from the start, and not just because that’s what best friends do.  Wyverns in the Winery is far more than cello music.  It’s extremely varied in its musical textures, and full of instrumental tracks that uplift the spirit and enrich the imagination with full-color visuals.  I’m no synaesthete (Betsy is), but I’m telling you that this release is a treat for the ears, the mind, AND the mind’s eye.  Go check it out.

Betsy has also announced some sponsorship opportunities for the physical CD release of WITW, as well as the info for the release party in Washington state.  Click here for all of that.  And watch the two of us live on Concert Window tonight if you’re free!  

 

 

Grateful Traveler

Sep 21, 17

Got home from Magical Mountain Mabon in New Mexico late on Tuesday evening, and I’m starting my trip to Piedmont Pagan Pride Day in Belmont, NC this afternoon.  Zoom!  The Mabon event near Tijeras, NM was an absolute joy.  The campsite was gorgeous, and the community were eager and generous with their level of participation and support.  I am better for having made the trip, and that whole tribe has my great gratitude.  

For a bonus, I got some quality time with my friend Kat Heatherington, who has a book release coming up!  More info on Kat’s book release and her poetry here.

I also got an all-too-brief visit with my song-sister, heroine, and fellow Green Album songwriter Wendy Rule and her husband, composer Timothy Van Diest.  We had a gorgeous hike up above Santa Fe on Monday afternoon, and two excellent meals together before Ryan and I headed east for home.  If you don’t know Wendy’s music, written and understood from both sides of the veil,  go here. Tim & Wendy have a new collaborative album right there on the front page!

 

I’m looking forward to my time in NC.  It’s been too long!  Linked below are some of the sweet sights I brought home with me from the high desert.

 

 

#newmexico you are such a flirt. It’s working. #rainbow #newmexicosky #travelingram 🌈

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Local flora knockin’ me out in #newmexico this weekend. #pricklypear #castilleja #colors #naturebreak

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Online Concert Tonight!

Sep 11, 17

I’ll be giving another Concert Window broadcast this evening from 7-8pm Central time, which will be 8-9pm Eastern, 6-7pm Mountain, and 5-6pm Pacific.  Pay what you want, get comfy, and enjoy – click here! 

To get you warmed up, here’s an excerpt from my most recent previous solo broadcast, which was back on July 1st.  

 

Reminder: I’ll be heading to New Mexico in a few days for the Magical Mountain Mabon festival, and then to NC next week for Piedmont Pagan Pride day!  At the end of the month, I’ll be at the Earth Warriors Festival in Ohio, which is sure to be full of old friends and new memories.  All the info about upcoming shows is right here on my tour schedule page.

Upcoming Shows This Autumn

Sep 5, 17

I’ll start with the sad news to get it out of the way: CalderaFest, which was to be my band Tricky Pixie’s one and only festival appearance for all of 2017, has been canceled. 🙁 Now on to happier things!

 

I got to kick this month off in Missouri, at beautiful Oak Spirit Sanctuary outside of Boonville, where I was very sweetly received, as was my song-sister Renée Janski, who came to that land for the first time this past weekend as my side player!  Our crowd at the Harvest Homecoming event was enthusiastic, kind, and full of fun.  Thank you all so much for a great experience!

 

I’m heading back to Missouri in a couple of days to gather with friends in support of one of our own.  We’re throwing a benefit event on Saturday, September 9th in Webster Groves, all afternoon and evening, for our buddy Brian Greenway, songwriter, supporter, and A+ dad.  Here’s the info for that.  We’ll have music, tasty treats, an impressive silent auction, and a little bit of mayhem, no doubt.

 

It’s a great month of events for me, so I don’t even mind driving all over the place to get to where I’m wanted!  

-I’ll be in New Mexico for the Magical Mountain Mabon event Sept 14-17, joining brand-new New Mexico resident Wendy Rule, one of my most brilliant stage-friends! Online registration for this event is closed.

-I’ll be in North Carolina for Piedmont Pagan Pride Day on September 23rd, my only PPD event of the season!  Pagan Pride Day events are always free and open to the public.  This is my first trip to NC in a couple of years!

-I’ll close out September at the Earth Warriors festival in Ohio, sharing the spotlight with Kellianna & More.  Check it out.

 

Next month, I’ll stop in Memphis at my beloved Festival of Souls, and then I’m hitting the road from Arkansas to Oregon and back with my song-sisters Renée Janski, Ronda Jean, Ginger Doss, and Lynda Millard!  Talk about a dream come true! All of our confirmed tour dates are on my tour schedule page, and also our #MusesontheRoad Facebook events for the first half of the tour and the second half of the tour.  Consider yourself invited, my dears!

 

I do get a little bit of time at home here and there, which I sorely need, though I hate to admit it.  The cats are pleased.

 

Four PNW Shows!

Aug 8, 17

Folks, it’s been a lovely summer of low-key concerts for me so far, a large chunk of them shared with my friend Leslie Hudson, who’s based in Ontario & touring the US extensively by car for the first time.  We’ve torn up the road together from Oklahoma to Washington state, and it feels so good.    

Leslie and I will share four more concerts- two in Washington and two in Oregon -before we part ways later this month.  The Seattle-area shows are this weekend, and we’ll be on stage with my band Tricky Pixie for those!  Hoping for a big turnout, since Saturday and Sunday will be our only public Tricky Pixie concerts in the PNW this summer.  

Saturday evening, Leslie and the band and I will be in Kenmore, WA.  Get your tickets here!

Sunday evening, starting a bit earlier, we’ll all be in Silverdale, WA together.  Get tickets here!

 

After that, the band’s gonna say goodbye to Alec, our beloved faerietale fiddler, for a few weeks, but we’ll meet up again at Caldera Pagan Music Festival in Georgia!  Will you be there??  

 

Once Alec is safely on his way, Leslie and Betsy and I have our two Portland, Oregon shows.  Right now we’ve sold every seat for our show at The Sacred Well in Sellwood on Tuesday, August 15th, but we have a fair number of tickets left right now for the Wednesday, August 16th show.  Get yours!

 

Leslie has many, many more concerts in the US this year, and I recommend you find one if she’s coming through your home turf.  Find out more about her music and her tour here!

 

My year is very rich in bandmates so far, but I do have a couple of solo shows on the calendar.  🙂  There’s so much to tell, so much to look forward to!  Here’s the rest of the tour schedule for 2017, if you’re curious.

 

 

 

New Podcast goodness!

Aug 3, 17

Aleen Simms and K. Tempest Bradford, both brilliant creatives & awesome beings as far as I’m concerned, wove me deftly into their conversation on the most recent episode of their shared podcast, Originality.  The ep is solid & sounds great, and it features some of everyone’s most beloved Betsy Tinney songs, too!  “Alligator in the House” and “Dryad’s Promise” both get a little featured air time.  Good choices!  During each episode so far, Tempest and Aleen have played clips of guest interviews, sharing smart, nourishing, spontaneous discussion around the things that come up in those clips.  They’re great pod hosts, and this is their seventh episode.

Listen here!

When Tempest interviewed me, we talked about a little bit of everything: following your bliss & doing the work, what privilege looks like for those of us who work for ourselves, knowing where the line is between independence and self-sabotage, writing what we love, and collaboration.  Since episode 8 will be all about collaboration, Tempest said in this episode that she’ll be including some more of our interview in that episode.  

Check out the podcast here.  Support and subscribe if you’re able! 

 

I hope y’all enjoy listening and have some toothsome thoughts as you go.  This was an honor for me!

 

New Tune on Soundcloud

Aug 2, 17

Just posted this bad boy.  My first goth-industrial protest song. 

 

 

Lyrics and more info here.

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