News

Robyn Landis: News

Official Waterproof CD release is today--October 28, 2014! - October 28, 2014

 

I've had it in my hands for just a few weeks, but today is the official release date: WATERPROOF is finally here!  After a long and winding road, this recording is ready to share with the world. It's up on CDbaby NOW at this link: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/robynlandis2 — and will be on itunes and Amazon within 1-5 days (so I'm told). :)  You can also order by sending $17.50 (includes shipping of $2.50) to Paypal at rlandis at drizzle ot com.

Co-produced by John Jennings (producer of many Mary-Chapin Carpenter CDs as well as John Gorka, BeauSoleil and Indigo Girls and many others) and featuring Christine Lavin on harmony for "Knitting," this CD evolved through my writing and experiences over the last few years to be an expansive perspective on the world and life’s journeys. It is meant to be uplifting, activist, spiritual, and personal, and a paean to hope and resilience.  

I am so thrilled and grateful to have to ready to share and fly out into the world!  It is on its way in batches to my *phenomenal* team of crowdfunding backers (175 people who collectively fronted over $9500! and made this project possible) and to DJs.  

Early reviews from listeners and DJs are GREAT. I hope if you get it and like it that you'll write a review at CDBaby and/or itunes. Those really help! 

If you missed this on social media, Christine Lavin (who was generously pivotal in helping this production move forward when John unfortunately became ill—he's doing better now!—not only sings harmony on "Knitting" but made the sweetest coolest video for the song! You can watch that here. http://vimeo.com/108254765  Knitters are loving it—and I've already gained a couple of gorgeous handmade scarves in the process, too. ;)  Christine and I will be doing a couple shows together in NY in late March/early April too! Yahoo! 

I'll be touring more in earnest come 2015 in support of this CD (a few shows on calendar already), while using the relative  (heh heh ;) ) downtime of the holiday season here in November and December 2014 to get the CD into full distribution, do promotion and booking, catch up with the house I moved into this summer and then abandoned for two months ;) etc.  

I just returned from a great two-month sojourn from late August to late October, which not only involved at least one of nearly every kind of show (outdoor theatre concert, house concert, festival, coffeehouse, bookstore, church and Folk Alliance conference ;) ) but also along the way included volunteering at Best Friends Animal Society, visiting national parks, a precious visit with my parents and brother, hiking, biking, and enjoying precious time with my dearest friends in the Northwest. Not to mention of course approving mixes and masters on the CD, finishing the artwork, getting it out to print, a lot of writing, and lots of other stuff! 

I've only been back for a few days, and now a new chapter is beginning with the CD in da house—literally! 

Lyrics will be up on this site in a week or two, and I'm planning a new website (FINALLY!) for 2015 as well.

Stay in touch, let me know what you think of the new recording and have a wonderful, healthy, safe, blessed, grateful, conscious and awake holiday season! 

With love, 

Robyn

New CD coming late spring/early summer 2014! - April 30, 2014

 

My third CD, entitled "Waterproof," recorded in March 2014 with John Jennings, is in postproduction! After mixing, mastering and printing, it should be ready for shipping by the end of June.

it contains ten brand-new original songs by me, and one Richard Shindell cover! Musicians featured are John Jennings, Cary Black, Paul Elliott, Larry Murante, Elle McSharry and Fletcher Andrews.

150+ backers amazingly helped me raise nearly $10,000 to make this CD. Although the Kickstarter is over, I am still accepting pre-orders, and higher pledge amounts are still rewarded at the same Kickstarter levels! The CD will be available on CDbaby, iTunes and direct from me.

(Has it really been this long since I posted an entry? I guess Facebook, Kickstarter and email have replaced the web journal, but I'll try to bring some of the news over here next time I post elsewhere!)

Six weeks in Seattle, Tumbleweed contest win, fall... - September 8, 2012

 

Hi folks,

What a great summer!  I've been in the Pacific Northwest since July 25, playing, writing, working, hanging with all my old Seattle friends, taking mini-trips, and enjoying the best that the NW has to offer!  I did some housesitting, went climbing for the first time in Leavenworth, played house concerts in Shelton and Olympia, hiked...

Closed out the summer sort of officially with an awesome time at Tumbleweed Music Festival in Richland.  Tumbleweed, as many of you know, is where I met my good friends Joe and Karena Prater of Cat Loves Crow, and also Paul Knight, who became the subject of Paul's Song.  This was about my 6th Tumbleweed and definitely the best yet!  I was so sad to see it end!  Such a friendly, loving community. The weather was divine, there was an awesome full moon reflected in the Columbia River, I played a super fun set, got to hear Jim Page headline (caught him a week later in Seattle too!),  taught a songwriting workshop, won third place in the songwriting contest, got to visit and sing with Joe and Karena and see their 6-year-old Arlea play with them...  I also got to hang and jam with paul, and he even gave me my first banjo lesson (very dangerous!) WOW!  It was FULL!

Next week I make the sojourn back to my desert vistas...I'm going to miss my NW peeps so badly, but it's time.  I miss my craggy Catalina mountains,  pink sunsets, cerulean skies, and dry warm eves... but I always leave a little piece of my heart here in Seattle. It was a pretty darn nice weather summer here too. Tucson was pelted by storms every day!

Fall shows coming up in the SW...conferences and more...and winter recording!  Stay tuned...

Love always,

Robyn

Robyn WON the Wildflower! festival Songwriting Contest...! - May 19, 2012

 

...along with Nicolette Good (who also won Kerrville this year!) and Connor Garvey--fine fine company; both of them blew me away. All ten finalists were phenomenal, in fact, and I literally burst out "NO!" when my name was announced and everyone laughed. It was so much fun and an honor,  What a great festival! Al and Pat are the sweetest people, and I got to hear Mary Gauthier, John Gorka, Guy Clark, previous years' winners Louise Mosrie and RJ Cowdery....oh, and also saw Beth Nielsen Chapman, long a favorite songwriter of mine, who happened to be one of the judges (this really meant a lot to me). Beth was so kind and supportive.  I can't wait to be back to this festival! 

Finalist at WIldflower Festival Performing Songwriter Contest in Texas! - April 12, 2012

 

I actually squealed when I got the email that I'd been selected as one of ten finalists in the prestigious Wildflower festival's Performing Songwriter contest. I've always wanted to go!  It's one of the most loved folk festivals on the circuit, and the performing songwriter finalists are always formidable talents. This year is no exception--many folks I know or know of have been selected, including Ernest Troost, an amazing songwriter from LA who I happened to split a concert bill with here in Tucson just a few months ago in January. (See the link below for the full list.) It's going to be stiff competition, that's for sure, but I'm just thrilled and honored and humbled to even be a finalist and I'm excited to go to the festival, Where Wildflower is known for its great hospitality to performers. Plus, some of my favorites are headlining: Mary Gauthier, John Gorka and Guy Clark (does it get better than that?)  And past winners I happen to know and love are returning, like Louise Mosrie and RJ Cowdery.  So I'm pretty dang stoked!  May 18-20, Texas here I come!

http://www.wildflowerfestival.com/singersongwriter.html

For local folks here in AZ, I'm happy to be playing my EIGHTH (I can't believe it!) Tucson Folk Festival on May 5, (my slot is Sat eve at 5 p.m. on the Courtyard Stage). I love this little festival which is all warmth and heart and gave me my introduction to the town that is now my happy home!   Hope to see you there!

Tucson Folk Festival

Been a while since I posted news... - March 13, 2012

 

....busy busy busy!   I've spent the last year settling into my new home in Tucson after my move, getting drunk on the sunshine and tempted outside constantly by the delicious natural world and a joyful athletic scene, playing selectively (and had some really nice gigs) and writing for my next CD.  I'd say 2011 was a fairly languid year compared to previous ones, getting settled after the move and all--though I did travel to Memphis for my first International Folk Alliance Conference (I had an official showcase!) and through the NW in summer for a little tour and reunion with beloved and much-missed friends. I also played some terrific gigs locally and began getting to know my new musical community better.

I'm happy that I gave myself some time to really dig in and become acquainted with all my new town has to offer.  But for 2012 I've got all sorts of plans and ideas. 

A few nice recent bits:

  • I kicked off January with my annual New Year's writing retreat, then played a terrific show for the wonderful Live Acoustic Venue Association in Tucson, a co-bill with the amazing Ernest Troost that had lovely turnout. I was joined onstage by Tucson's beloved and talented Sabra Faulk on bass and Jim Lipson on percussion. WAY fun.

 

  • I received word in February that "Dry Rain Calm Wind,"  one of my co-written songs with the great Larry Murante, won 6th place in the Great Lakes Songwriting Contest.  

 

  • I'll be playing my eighth (!) Tucson Folk Festival this May 5. The TFF is very dear to me as it was my introduction to Tucson, the place I fell in love with and that was to become my new home!  I've played a few fundraisers so far this year to support the festival, too. 

 

  • I'll be traveling to the East coast in June and through the NW all summer. And more to be scheduled. 

 

  • I hope to start recording a new CD in the fall. I've got about six new songs and am working on the rest.

 

  • I'm also working on my first book of fiction. As you may know I wrote and published two nonfiction books in the 90s, but this is a totally new endeavor for me. I can't explain much about it yet, but it will be a series of related short vignettes illustrating our fundamental interconnectedness and how we affect one another.

 

  • And i actually started teaching guitar lessons! In both cases I fell into it, by showing friends/neighbors a few things for fun and being told they learned more from me than their guitar teachers. Who knew?!  I don't expect this to be a huge sideline, and I think I could only be useful to beginners, but I'm happy to help if i can.

 

I'm hatching more creative ideas than I know what to do with right now, ranging from teaching to co-writing to travel to blogging.  We'll see what I find time for...

I'm happy in the sunshine and having the outdoors life I dreamed of all those chilly years in Seattle. And that's a lot.

See you out there sometime this year, I hope!  Always feel free to write, I love hearing from you!

Warmly,

Robyn

P.S Today is the 7th anniversary of the death of my beloved best friend Bailey, a pointer-springer who passed at the age of almost 12. I am extra grateful today for my current canine girlyfriend Simone, who is dirty and happy and bathing in the sun this very moment. Every day is precious.

FInalist in the Tucson Folk festival Songwriting contest - March 3, 2011

 

Just found out I am a finalist in this year's Tucson Folk Festival songwriting contest. It'll be the first weekend of May. This will be my 7th year playing this fest -- and my first year playing it as a resident! It's also my 6th time (out of 7 years) in the song contest.  I'm pretty sure I will never enter it again after this year (enough's enough!) whether I win or not, but I plan to enjoy it this last time!

Robyn Landis sponsored by Taylor Guitars! - February 28, 2011

 

Here's a happy footnote to my "beginner's luck/zen mind" charmed Folk Alliance experience...

So a few days before I left for Memphis, my beloved 10-year-old Legends of the Fall 20th anniversary edition koa Taylor (my #1 and only guitar) developed a crack across the top from bridge to lower bout.  To say I was horrified is putting it mildly.

This was obviously a humidification problem--moving from Seattle (90%+ humidity) to Tucson (+/-10% humidity) plus the cold super-dry spell we had right then  (single digit temps and I had heat blasting 24/7). It happened virtually overnight--I left it out of the case for a few days, which i dont usually do. :(   

An outpouring of sympathy on Facebook was comforting, and my friend Roy Schneider who was also going to Memphis offered me one of his Martin Guitars. An interesting conversation about how most players seem to gravitate to either one or the other (Taylor or Martin) ensued; I won't detail it here.  But it does seem to be true--and I am definitely a Taylor girl. (My very first decent guitar was a Taylor, and I've had half a dozen since about 2000; always eventually moved on from all of them except for this koa baby I've loved for a decade.)  

I was grateful for any loaner, but missed my Taylor.

Meanwhile, Rainbow Guitars in Tucson took my poor dry koa girl and humidified/rehabbed/repaired it. (I got it back after the conference and it is actually fine, miraculously. You can barely see where the crack was and it sounds just like it did before. WHEW!  A scary and expensive lesson. Needless to say, I am now the zealous owner/user of an Oasis humidifier and hygrometer.)

Making a long story short, I was encouraged to pursue help from Taylor, and the Taylor folks exhibiting at the conference so very kindly gave me a loaner (which I got to pick from the two dozen or so Taylors they had on display there). Predictably, I fell in love with it, and it suited my music eerily (everyone who heard me play it said, "You have to have that guitar" to which I snorted "Yeah right, like I can afford a $3000 guitar.")  

But, at the end of the conference, I became a "Taylor artist!" I was offered sponsorship--and got to keep the Gs5 ("symphony" model, cedar top, African mahogany back/sides) for, well, a song.  

I'm no Taylor Swift, but I hope to do Taylor Guitars proud!    

The company had my loyalty before this, but their care and support of me at Folk Alliance sealed the deal a few times over for life. They know how to treat artists!

There are some songs in this new beauty for sure, and I plan to get some of them out this year. :)

 

When I was walking in Memphis... - February 24, 2011

 

WOW is all I can say!  Okay, that's not all I can say. I'll say this too: I was happily, joyfuly surprised at how absolutely FUN the International Folk Alliance Conference was.  WHy should I be, you might well ask? I'm not sure.  I mean, why WOULDN'T spending five days with 1,500 artists and music supporters (many of whom I've met and befriended over the years at other conferences and festivals) be great fun? 

 I guess I always got the impression that the International Folk Alliance was enormous and overwhelming and therefore stressful and frenetic.  I'm sure i got that idea from somewhere. ;) But I wasn't going to turn down an opportunity to perform in a juried Performance Alley showcase, which I was very grateful to have received the first time I applied!  So I went, even though I'd just moved to a new state and really, really didn't want to leave my beloved and recently-uprooted dog with a stranger.

Boy am I glad I did.

My dog was fine, and I had a blast.  Friendships old and new, connections, contacts. Tons of workshops that really were valuable and educational (the one led by Mary Gauthier, Eliza Gilkyson, Sue Casey and Val Denn was alone worth the entire cost of the event for me). Performing, and seeing/hearing great performances. Inspiration, ideas, creative stirrings.  And--this is a credit to our community and makes me proud to be a part of it--kindness, friendliness, warmth. When an event comprised of over 1,500 people feels intimate, you know someone is doing something right. Maybe we all are.

It's also possible that I went at the right time, waiting until I was ready.

At any rate, I am very glad that I was able to go, that I am part of the Folk Alliance community, and that it all went so smoothly. It was "work," but it didn't feel like it. I have enjoyed the regional FAs I've attended, but wasn't sure the International was going to be my speed. I'm delighted to be looking forward to the next one. It's valuable. And I left feeling full of love and gratitude.

And I want to see more of Memphis next time!  Not leaving extra space for that is my only regret.

Thanks to Folk Alliance for pulling off a herculean feat in producing a diverse and immense event that really does feel like a family gathering.

House concert coming up in January in Tucson--my new home! - January 14, 2011

hello, friends!

Much to tell in this fledgling new year.  I am here in my "new" town, and it feels beautiful.  I'm loving Tucson as much as I knew I would and I feel so at home, as I always have.  Warmth and sun are simple joys for me, and I have the robust outdoor life I deeply wanted, as well as a cute home in desert mountains, nice pals, and a dynamic music community. 

After a busy October and November musically (throughout the Northwest and Northeast), i took off a few months to make this long-awaited move.  I'll be playing a bit here and there through spring as I settle in; my schedule will ramp up again through summer and fall.

I will not dwell here on Tucson's heartbreaking recent events except to say that through the intense heartache and loss, I only feel closer to my community and more proud to be Tucsonan. In my struggle to make meaning of it personally, I will no doubt turn to music eventually.

Sticking to musical and happy subjects, I play my first show of the year (and first Tucson show as a Tucsonan!) on Saturday, January 29 and you are warmly invited to come, enjoy and celebrate my arrival!  The show will be at the home of Bobby Kimmel and I am sharing the bill with his locally beloved band BK Special. I will open the show at 7:30 p.m. and Bobby will join me on a few tunes!  

Reservations are required so please do RSVP to HIM at his email address  (it's bobbykimmel10@gmail.com) and please do let him know you are responding to my newsletter.

I will keep you posted on my musical news as it unfolds this year--writing, recording, playing and whatever else!  

My big February news I'll be attending my first International Folk Alliance conference in Memphis,  as I was awarded an official showcase.   I'm humbled to have been selected, among the likes of Mary Gauthier, Carrie Rodriguez, Eliza Gilkyson, Suzy Bogguss, James Keelaghan, Caroline Herring, Diana Jones...too many more to mention (there are about 200, many friends too).  I look forward to seeing old buddies and meeting new ones as I always do. 

Hope to see you in a couple weeks! 

Always grateful for your support,

Robyn

An end-of-year note...December 2010 - December 30, 2010

 

Dear friends and music followers,

After a busy October and November full of music (excellent house concerts in the NW and at FAR-West in October, then sharing stages in the Northeast with Ellis Paul, Liz Longley and David Glaser--great times all!), I took some time off to make a long-dreamed-of move to the Southwest.  I've settled in a sweet spot in the mountains just outside Tucson, Arizona for the time being, where my hankering for a warmer drier climate and an active outdoor life are being joyfully met.  I've spent some time here every year for the last seven, and I've been grateful for the support and assistance of friends and family with this move, and the warm welcome I've received here.   My solstice this year was spent high up on a hiking trail with clear skies, warm breezes, murmuring critters, and a ginormous full moon morphing into a coppery eclipse! Now this is what I'm talking about!

With all the packing and moving, plus the holidays, music and work has taken a bit of a back seat.   (I do have one house concert scheduled for January 29, sharing the bill with some of Tucson's finest and most beloved musicians--Stefan George and Bobby Kimmel--details on the web soon). But right now i wanted to take this time to stop in the cyber way, wish you a truly happy holiday, and thank you for your tremendous support over this last year and all the way along.

In the spirit of giving and the season, i'm offering a demo recording for anyone who would like a taste of something new that I've been up to.  "Knitting" is one of the newer songs I've written in 2010 and the only one I've recorded in 2010.  It'll be more polished later but this naked version is available for free download at http://www.robynlandis.com/ (just click on LISTEN) and then on "Knitting."

This was a pretty full year musically. I played shows in the Northeast, the West, Southwest and Nashville (including my first time at The Bluebird cafe), solo and with band.  I was a finalist in the Great American Song contest, the USA Songwriting Contest (alongside such respected finalists as Edie Carey, Madison Violet and Liz Longley), the Great Lakes Songwriting contest, and Susquehanna Art & Music Festival Songwriting Contest--bringing the # of such recognitions since 2005 to well over 50. I was a Premiere Showcase artist at Folk Alliance Region West conference.  I played some of the best, most fun and sold-out house concerts of my career.  Shared some shows/stages and accompaniment with great musicians and friends old & new. I also just found out I was awarded a Performance Alley showcase at the International Folk Alliance conference this February 2011.

Most of all, I met wonderful people everywhere I went--generous audiences and inspiring musicians, hardworking venue operators and DJs.   The number and quality of connections I make through music humbles and delights me.

One of my 2011 goals is to play more house concerts--they are by far the most rewarding and rich performing experience in every possible way. I also want to play in regions and states I haven't played in before.  If you are interested in hosting a house concert, contact me. If you don't know, I'll coach you in how it's done.  You can also check out http://concertsinyourhome.com/

I look forward to a new year of writing and co-writing, recording, playing and most of all sharing my music with you.    I wish you a year of creativity and fulfillment as well, as a warm, safe holiday season.

Sincerely and with heartfelt gratitude,

Robyn Landis

P.S. - My first CD "Love and Other Words" and newest CD "Many Moons" are both on sale at CD Baby till the end of the month.   The older one is only $5 and the newer is $10.   Maybe a little late for Xmas, should've told you sooner, but still--if you're wanting to give or get extra copies, now's the time.  Go <http://www.cdbaby.com/Search/cm9ieW4gbGFuZGlz/0>here.

Dear friends and music followers,

After a busy October and November full of music (excellent house concerts in the NW and at FAR-West in October, then sharing stages in the Northeast with Ellis Paul, Liz Longley and David Glaser--great times all!), I took some time off to make a long-dreamed-of move to the Southwest!

 I've settled in a sweet spot in the mountains just outside Tucson, Arizona, where my hankering for a warmer drier climate and an active outdoor life are being joyfully met.  I've spent some time here every year for the last seven, and I've been grateful for the support and assistance of friends and family with this move, and the warm welcome I've received here.  

My solstice this year was spent high up on a hiking trail with clear skies, warm breezes, murmuring critters, and a ginormous full moon morphing into a coppery eclipse! Now this is what I'm talking about!

With all the packing and moving, plus the holidays, music and work has taken a bit of a back seat.   (I do have one house concert scheduled for January 29, sharing the bill with some of Tucson's finest and most beloved musicians--Stefan George and Bobby Kimmel--details on the web soon). But right now i wanted to take this time to stop in the cyber way, wish you a truly happy holiday, and thank you for your tremendous support over this last year and all the way along.

In the spirit of giving and the season, i'm offering a demo recording for anyone who would like a taste of something new that I've been up to.  "Knitting" is one of the newer songs I've written in 2010 and the only one I've recorded in 2010.  It'll be more polished later but this naked version is available for free download here (just click on LISTEN in my navigation menu and then on "Knitting.")

This was a pretty full year musically. I played shows in the Northeast, the West, Southwest and Nashville (including my first time at The Bluebird cafe), solo and with band.  I was a finalist in the Great American Song contest, the USA Songwriting Contest (alongside such respected finalists as Edie Carey, Madison Violet and Liz Longley), the Great Lakes Songwriting contest, and Susquehanna Art & Music Festival Songwriting Contest--bringing the # of such recognitions since 2005 to well over 50.

I was a Premiere Showcase artist at Folk Alliance Region West conference.  I played some of the best, most fun and sold-out house concerts of my career.  Shared some shows/stages and accompaniment with great musicians and friends old & new. I also just found out I was awarded a Performance Alley showcase at the International Folk Alliance conference this February 2011.

Most of all, I met wonderful people everywhere I went--generous audiences and inspiring musicians, hardworking venue operators and DJs.   The number and quality of connections I make through music humbles and delights me.

One of my 2011 goals is to play more house concerts--they are by far the most rewarding and rich performing experience in every possible way. I also want to play in regions and states I haven't played in before.  If you are interested in hosting a house concert, contact me. If you don't know, I'll coach you in how it's done.  You can also check out http://concertsinyourhome.com/

I look forward to a new year of writing and co-writing, recording, playing and most of all sharing my music with you.    I wish you a year of creativity and fulfillment as well, as a warm, safe holiday season.

Sincerely and with heartfelt gratitude,

Robyn

P.S. - My first CD "Love and Other Words" and newest CD "Many Moons" are both on sale at CD Baby till the end of the month.   The older one is only $5 and the newer is $10.   Maybe a little late for Xmas, should've told you sooner, but still--if you're wanting to give or get extra copies, now's the time.  Go here.

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