Rootchie Tootchie & The Ragtime Shepherd Kings

Greetings from Music City, USA!

I’ve been in Nashville for a few days now and I forgot how nice it is around here. You see familiar faces everywhere, and you’ve got great businesses like Dino’s and the Fiddle House to support, not to mention all the great music you can see every night. I’m excited to stay here for a few more weeks. Now I’ll tell you about what I’m doing here—

This link pretty much explains it all. Back in March I made my first wax cylinder recording with Tim and Lindsay and now we’re going to do a whole album’s worth. I’ve never done one of these funding things before but the way I see it (and justify it to myself) is that you’re basically buying the record in advance. Like ordering from a catalogue. You pay up front and then you get the product a little while later, because you wanted it. Plus there are exciting rewards for big givers. And if you’re strapped for cash and can’t donate you can always share the link with your friends who might be interested in this unique project.

I’m happy to report that the Detroit shows with Lindsay were a huge success, and Jay, of Music in the Burbs, even told me that although he hates reading email and doesn’t even open eighty percent of his incoming messages, he always enjoys reading my emails. Warmed my heart right up, he did. Thanks again to Brett Newski and Shine On Kentucky Moon for making it such a great night at PJ’s!

So for the next few weeks I’m not planning on playing many shows, just rehearsing and recording with these Rootchie Tootchies. I do have one show this Tuesday at Robert’s Western World, with Rachael Hester and the Tennessee Walkers. Rachael is one of my favorite country singers. Check her out some time!

Once this project is finished in mid-December I’m heading to Portland, Maine, to work with Tumbling Bones, an excellent band whose music you will probably like a lot. And seeing them live is amazing. Lots of energy and lots of talent, these guys. So I’m hoping this might turn into something that can last a while, I do like playing with them so.

Ah, and then I’m going to Klez Kamp! It’s like fat camp but for klezmer dorks. I won a full scholarship to attend and I am so excited. What a program they have, and what a staff lineup! Maybe I will become a real klezmer player. Maybe I will never be the same again. At least I’m sure I will learn a lot and make some new friends.

And that will take me up to the end of the year. I’m sure I’ll have another email for you by then, but I’ll tell you now that the Corn Potatos have a square dance tour planned for the month of January with T-Claw calling the dances. We’re playing in NYC, DC, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Philly, Elkins, Cincinnati, Louisville, and at least a couple more places. I will let you know… And by the way, The Corn Potato String Band (which is my new band with Lindsay McCaw and Ben Belcher) has a new website, complete with sweet videos and audio, thanks to Nick Lethert. If anyone needs a great website done quick, I can put you in touch with him.

Last of all, I’m reading Glenn Haege’s 100 Most Important Home Improvement Tips for fun, and Fierce Pajamas, an anthology of humor writing from The New Yorker, for my serious times.

Keep smiling everybody!