November in the Northeast! - November 9, 2010

 

Happy autumn everyone,

Is it a sign of being a grown-up that when Thanksgiving and Christmas are imminent, it seems like it was about two months ago that they last happened? Was 2010 was the fastest-zooming year ever?  It truly seems surreal that it is November already.

My October shows were a blast--a great big thank you to everyone who came, and those new to this list who signed up (thank you!), to my outstanding band, and to the wonderful venues that hosted me.  I had a very special time, too, at my first Folk Alliance Region West  (FAR-West) conference, where I met some fantastic new folks, saw old friends, heard fine music, and connected with some of my favorite DJs.  October was also one of my busiest months, taking me to Olympia, Portland, California, Nashville and Tucson!

Speaking of the latter, I'm making the migration south a little more permanent after  many years of traveling to the desert and flirting with a real move. I found a beautiful and inspiring living space, and I'll be heading down mid-December!  I'll still be traveling, and visiting the Northwest often since my roots here are long and deep. But home now will be in the heart of my beloved Sonoran desert, warm and dry and sunny and surrounded by trees, cacti, birds, flowers, and that earthy magical glow that makes me so happy. I'm very, very excited! :)

My last set of shows in 2010 is this month (see below for schedule), and then I'll be off for a bit, getting settled in my new home. The November gigs are in the Northeast, a mix of opener/co-bills and solo, and should be really fun.  So if you're thereabouts, I hope you'll come out and see me! And bring friends!  I've got some new songs to run by you, and am sharing the stage with some topnotch folks. 

Thanks to everyone for your support and encouragement this year.  It was an incredible year of new friendships I cherish, new music I love, new writing alliances, and new travels. I look forward to sharing more music in more places next year!

Have a safe and peaceful holiday season!

Robyn

 

 

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 18  8 p.m.
Kennett Flash
Kennett Square, PA
Co-bill with Liz Longley (one of the best young singer-songwriters on the planet)
$12 in advance, $15 at door
www.kennettflash.org/tickets.html 

 

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 19, 8 p.m.
The Barrington Coffeehouse
Barrington, NJ
1 hour Solo (with guitarist Nick Stevens) - Set shared with Anj Granieri
$10
www.barringtoncoffeehouse.com

 

 

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 7:30 p.m.
Concerts at the Crossing
Titusville, NJ
Opening for Ellis Paul (how cool is that?) 
$23.50 in advance or at the door
www.concertsatthecrossing.com
 

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 21 6:30 p.m.
Mike Jones House Concerts
Arnold, MD
Co-bill with David Glaser (superb songwriter who will also accompany me on multiple instruments!)
$20 

Email mjones2@aahs.org or call 410-647-6549 (address with reservation).

 

Please see my website for more details on these shows, links and more!

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

October news and music update--including round at The Bluebird and FAR-West (Folk Alliance) Premiere Showcase! - September 15, 2010

 

Fall came fast this year, didn't it?  In the Northwest, anyway...  It always does, but this summer flew particularly swiftly, I think. Partly 'cause it didn't start till mid-July... I spent a lot of time outdoors and did a ton of great hiking, yet still somehow it doesn't feel like enough. I want more than a couple months. I have sun greed!  

I'm happy I got to soak up a last glowing bit of warmth at the Tumbleweed Music Festival in Richland, WA, Labor Day weekend with lots of friends and some terrific music. I enjoyed teaching a "freewriting to songwriting" workshop to a very brave group of writers as well! My favorite festival moments include following my longtime favorite Uncle Bonsai onstage (just a little "who'd've thought!" moment--back in the day, I was practically their groupie and only dreamed I'd be a performer too), Joe and Karena Prater's sweet harmonies on my set,  joining Larry Murante on our John Lennon-winning Paul's Song, and of course,  singing Paul's Song in my own set with a cheering audience and Paul himself beaming up at me. (Oh yeah, and the side visit to Badger Mountain Organic Winery's tasting room....but I digress...)

I know everyone's probably busy with school back in session and leaves to rake and all :) so without further ado I'll get right down to business:  I just have a few shows this month, but they're special ones, a few with full band, and I hope you have a chance to check one out!

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 2 @ 8 p.m.
Blue Heron Arts Center
19704 Vashon Hwy. SW
Vashon Island, WA
This will be the finale show of the Vashon Allied Arts' New Works Series for 2010, featuring songs from my still-fairly-new work Many Moons, along with many of the musicians who appeared on it. The core band of Cary Black on bass and Paul Elliott on fiddle is always a treat for everyone (including me!), and with Charles Reed on guitar and Fletcher Andrews on percussion, and a couple special guests, it promises to be a rocking show. 
I've been writing this year and hope to debut one or two new tunes as well, maybe even a new cover or two. We'll see--it's a work in progress, which is the idea!
Tickets $12-15 available in advance by calling the Blue Heron at (206) 463-5131
or at Brown Paper Tickets: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/129445


FRIDAY, OCTOBER 8 @ 6:30 p.m. 
BLUEBIRD CAFE
My first time at this legendary venue!  In The Round with Louise Mosrie, Roy Schneider, Donna Ulisse.  This visit to Nashville I hope to write some stuff with Louise, a fantastic songsmith and Kerrville New Folk Winner 2009, and David Llewellyn, my amazing songwriter friend with whom I wrote "Losing Sleep" (on Many Moons).


FRIDAY, OCTOBER 15 @ 8 p.m.
Soul Food Books and Music
Redmond, WA
This will be my second time at this lovely warm venue I recently discovered, with a great stage and sound system. If you feel like some primo coffee and tea, a browse through some cool books and spiritual/health items, and an evening of good tunes, venture on over to the East Side!
$5-10 suggested cover


SATURDAY, OCTOBER 16 @ 7:30 p.m.
Olympia Acoustic Music
418 Washington St SE
Olympia, WA
Musicians are grateful to see a venue blossoming in Olympia, as in the past there's been rather a gap down that way when it comes to acoustic music. Mark Kaufman has developed a thriving nonprofit volunteer-run series has already hosted the likes of Cheryl Wheeler and Buddy Mondlock, so I'm very honored to be included in this season's lineup.  Again a full band show featuring Paul, Cary and Charles!
$15
Reservations Required
http://home.comcast.net/~olymusic/site/


Thursday, October 21 - Saturday, October 24
Folk Alliance Region West (FAR-West) Conference
San Jose, CA
Unless you're a fellow folk musician, you probably won't be attending these shows, but I'm pleased that I was offered a juried Premiere Showcase this year at the conference, sharing that honor with a roster of some extremely fine musicians.  This is a place where performing songwriters go to get heard by those who book music--and to see friends and attend seminars and jam in the hallways till the wee hours.  I'll be playing a handful of informal showcases as well.

And then it will be time to rest!

Coming up in November:  I'll be traveling back east again for a few excellent shows, including an opener for Ellis Paul at Concerts at the Crossing in New Jersey; a NYC house concert; and one with David Glaser in Baltimore.  Check the calendar for those shows and more.

I hope you stay warm and cozy as we transition into the autumn season...
Thanks for your support as always.

Notes from the road April/May - April 22, 2010

 

I'm on the road, so just a brief update this time around with some bits of news. You can always get my full/extended schedule here on the site!

Been playing some gigs in CA, lots of fun, and writing too!  Next week i have a couple gigs in AZ as well as the Tucson Folk Festival, where I'll play a set, compete in the song contest, AND teach a songwriting workshop.  (Not to mention see old friends and enjoy some of the best hiking on the planet!)  After that it's onto Maryland where I'll be playing in the songwriter's showcase/contest at Susquehanna Music and Arts Festival, a new festival for me.

A couple of reminders:

• Voting in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest's  Lennon Awards round is still going on, and will be until April 26th.  There are still 3 days left for the final push!  You can vote every day for Paul's Song if you are so moved, giving Larry Murante and I a boost in our ability to produce more CDs and moving us to the final round--competing for Maxell Song Of The Year.  We are grateful to everyone who has been persistent and creative in making the voting happen every day!

• You can see the video of "Bring Them Home," featuring the song I wrote for PAWS, at  http://www.paws.org.  PAWS exceeded their 2009 giving records and this year's funding goals, raising a whopping $150k  at their March event, much of which came directly from the "ask" directly following the video!

Download the song here on the site on my music page:   Please make a donation to PAWS at their website in the song's name if you download the song!

More to come soon...some lovely collaborations and fun shows coming up later in the year. Spring is here and summer's coming fast, so dig in to the deep sweet heart of the year and enjoy!
 

Lennon Awards voting begins tomorrow! Help make "Paul's Song" a winner and support songwriters and veterans... - March 25, 2010

 

Hey everyone, tomorrow begins online voting for the Lennon Awards. As Session I 2009 Grand Prize winners in the folk category of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest, Larry Murante and I are competing with Session II folk winners for a shot at Maxell Song of the Year.   It's a lot to ask ya'll to vote every day for a month, but that's what it'll take, and the truth is, the prizes can really help us keep doing what we're doing. And honor Paul ("Paul's Song") too. We would be grateful!  

Vote every day, tell your friends, and enjoy a FREE DOWNLOAD of "Paul's Song" from now through April 26 as a thank-you and to share with friends. Just go to my music page on this site!

  (VOTE FOR "PAUL'S SONG" HERE!)

"Paul's Song" wins Great American Song Contest honor award; Robyn is finalist at Susquehanna - March 19, 2010

 

Two more bits of recognition--Robyn was selected as a songwriting finalist at the Susquehanna Art and Music Festival in Havre De Grace, Maryland, this May 7.  She will perform along with nine other songwriters on Friday, May 7 and then attend the rest of the festival.

A few day later, "Paul's Song" (co-written with Seattle songwriter Larry Murante) was named a finalist in the Great American Song Contest, which received over 1500 entries this year!

 

 

Robyn writes song for Progressive Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) film - March 11, 2010

 

Robyn was commissioned to write the music for PAWS' 2010 fundraising video which will premiere at their gala event "Wild Night," March 27 at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Seattle.  She wrote the song, "Bring Them Home," in February, and the filmmakers and PAWS loved it! The song and lyrics will be posted here on the site in the Music section in April, for a download of $5 donation to PAWS animal rescue. It will also be featured with the video on PAWS' website.  The song features Robyn on vocals and guitar, Katie Mosehauer on violin, and Jeff Woollen of Village Sound Studio on piano and bass. Jeff generously donated his engineering expertise and studio time pro bono to the project, for which everyone is very grateful!  An avid animal welfare activist, Robyn was very honored to be asked for the song.

"Many Moons" is a DJ favorite - December 4, 2009

 

Many Moons was the 16th most played album on Folk Radio (#16 of the top 70 counted) in the month of October. It slipped a bit to #22 for the month of November, but still--the CD has been in the top 25 on this chart for three months running now.

 

I'm proud of this especially because the sustained airplay has come without any big professional promo push or publicist behind it. Just me, sending 'em to the stations and hoping they like it. And apparently, they do!

 

It also comes at a time when many highly respected and beloved artists--including some of my personal favorites--also have new CDs out.  I'm extremely honored to be so high on these playlists alongside Nanci Griffith, John Gorka, Caroline Herring, James Keelaghan, Cliff Eberhardt, Sarah Jarosz, Dave Rawlings Machine, Catie Curtis, Sarah Lee Guthrie, Guy Clark and many others.

 

And the personal notes and comments I have received from many DJs really makes my heart sing. I feel like the three months I spent in the studio at the start of this year and the loving, joyful attention I gave to every moment of the recording is being heard and recognized. 

 

I'm deeply grateful to the DJs who give airtime to folk musicians and who spend mostly volunteer hours listening and programming so that our work can be appreciated.

 

You can view the listings of top albums and artists here: http://www.folkradio.org/ 

Robyn Landis designs CD packaging and more - September 10, 2009

 

Hey everyone,
I wanted to make sure you knew that as a sideline, I am now designing CD packaging and helping musicians with their websites, bios, one-sheets and more.  In addition to designing my own CD packaging for Many Moons, which I am pleased to find has generated quite the buzz, I designed my dear friend Kat Eggleston's new CD package, which I am also happy to report has her and everyone delighted. And I've edited and laid out Kat's brand-new website, as well. I also lay out a gorgeous paper bio, radio one-sheet and more. i have samples.


I can do this for you!  If you are a musician and want this service, email me. As a musician as well as designer and writer for over 20 years, I can capture the essence of your music visually AND verbally, in an original and expressive way.  My rates are reasonable.
Thanks!
Robyn 

"Paul's Song" at Tumbleweed Music Festival - September 9, 2009

 

Just days after learning about the JLSC, this past weekend Larry Murante and I got to perform "Paul's Song" in Paul's home town of Richland, at the festival where I first met him. We closed the mainstage set Saturday night with "Paul's Song" in a spectacular downpour (the first on Labor Day weekend in Richland's history), under bright stage lights we hoped wouldn't explode, with stage techs holding umbrellas over our heads and the guitars. Check out the photos here! I just posted two of them.*

Before the show, Paul gave me one of his actual Vietnam war medals that he said he wanted me to have. It was one of those expansive moments that can't be described, where songwriting becomes about so much more than it seems and a simple song takes one's community so much farther and larger than one imagined. I felt soooo lucky. Thanks to all the volunteers for a great Tumbleweed Festival!

*NOTE:  Hostbaby and CDbaby are having a lot of problems right now, due to their  !?@^&*!^~(@_(&$@+=}#$%~`#%$@!!^&*(&^%#$ "upgrade," and one thing among many that happened is most of the photos in my gallery were lost. I'll eventually need to re-post them unless they figure out how to fix what they did. Meantime, don't be surprised if you see only a handful of photos in  my gallery when there once used to be a veritable photo-journal of my last 5 years as a musician!  Grrrr....

"Paul's Song" wins John Lennon award! - September 4, 2009

 

WOW!!!  AMAZING!

"Paul's Song," from the new CD Many Moons, has won Grand Prize in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest!   (Folk category, session 1)

http://www.jlsc.com/winners/2009a/winners.php

As many of you know, "Paul's Song" was co-written with my friend Larry Murante, who also recorded the song on his own terrific brand-new release, Point of Entry.

My version (the winning version :) ) features the incomparable Kat Eggleston on the second guitar, as well as Cary Black (Kingston Trio) on bass and Larry on harmony vocals.

I am very proud of this song, and still humbled by the quietly courageous man who inspired it.

Larry and I will each get to perform the song in Paul's home town this Labor Day weekend at Tumbleweed Festival, and it is just icing on the cake to have this  recognition for the song (and Paul) right beforehand.

True to its beloved namesake, JLSC is considered one of the most respected awards in a songwriter's career, as it receives many thousands of entries worldwide and is open to professionals at any level as well as amateur songwriters.

Later on, Grand Prize winners in each category compete head to head (Session I and Session 11) for the "Lennon Award" and then the 12 Lennon Award winners compete for the coveted Maxell Song of the Year Award (which means substantial prize money that can help a full-time musician live, which is why I'll be asking for you votes if that day comes...) More on that later.

If you don't have the CD already (what?! you don't?!  ;->) you can listen to "Paul's Song" and read about Paul here on my website .  You'll need to buy the CD to see the cute picture of Paul in my beautiful little lyric booklet, however.  :)

This is really exciting and gratifying, and I am very grateful.

Sweet time at the Bitter End - August 8, 2009

 

I just had one of the best times in New York I've ever had. A whirlwind three days, staying in the East Village with my friend Kathryn, an amazing fine artist and poet who works for the Metropolitan Opera too, and with my best friend Amanda in tow (we bused to NY from Philadelphia).

I grew up in NY, and spent summers in Manhattan during college, but have been back a scant few times since I moved West. This was such a happy visit! My show at the Bitter End Friday night (Aug 7) was SO MUCH FUN! I had a nice crowd, which included not only Amanda and Kathryn and her friends, but my parents (seeing me perform for the first time since I got serious about it--the last time they saw me was about 8 years ago), and about 15 "kids" from grade school and high school who made it a point to come out and see me!  That was a real trip, but in the nicest way--a really warm and appreciative audience.  

I was relaxed and enjoying the heck out of myself, and very proud of that and appreciating the opportunity and how I've grown as a performer and the chance to play in a place that was once the haunt of so many of my heroes. I really felt that presence there, silly as it may sound.  People snapped up Many Moons (which also got two great reviews last week, from FAME and Victory Review).

Oh, and it didn't hurt to have the talented and gorgeous Eleanor Whitmore playing fiddle with me--a songwriter in her own right, Eleanor is also a stellar violinist who plays with Slaid Cleaves, Kelly Willis, Son Volt and Susan Gibson. I was really honored to have her.  Rehearsal with her Thursday night was so easy and so fun--and ended up being an impromptu dinner party when Amanda's brother Nick (now a New Yorker) joined us at Kathryn's as well.  

Going out to Counter, a famous NYC vegetarian bar and restaurant where everything is organic, and having all 15 "kids" from my childhood follow me there to drink organic drinks and catch up, was also wild.  Afterward, Amanda and Kathryn and I walked all over the East Village till about 2 a.m. in the gorgeous warm summer evening under a full moon. It was a perfect night!

It was all a great reminder of the ever-widening community I have around me, even 3000 miles from where I now call home. I'm looking forward to coming back and playing more in the East.

MANY MOONS CD Release - How High The Moon! - July 1, 2009

 

Not only did I get to have a ridiculously smooth and fun and joyful recording process earlier this year, but my CD release followed suit by being magical perfection and immense fun.

The day was gorgeous. The house was full. The views were incredible. The food was delectable. The brownies were decadent. The wine (I hear, cuz all the red was gone by the time it was over and was ready to drink :) --I had my eye on the Bonterra merlot) was ambrosial. I had all the love and support I could possibly ask for. Laughter. Light. Sun. Love. Most of my dearest friends and loyalest fans were there. Folks LOVED it. Everyone seemed as happy as I was.

Oh yeah, and the music--it ROcKED. Unbelievably. The best friggin' band I ever played with. I hear I sounded pretty good. :) I know everyone else did! Cary Black, Paul Elliott, Mark Graham, Charles Reed, Larry Murante, Mark Wells. I could not wipe the grin off my face. Check out the pics as proof.

I had the time of my life. I was flying. I was singing and laughing and babbling. I hope I was coherent. I was so high afterward, I couldn't go to sleep till 9 a.m. the next day.

I hope I remembered to thank everyone.

Oh yeah, and I sold some CDs. :) Right. Cuz it was a CD release!

Regrets? That it went so fast. That it was over too soon. That I want to do that every night. That Paul Elliott and Cary Black aren't part of my permanent band. (I need to do something about that.) That it ended.

You get the idea.

I am so lucky.

2009 Falcon Ridge Emerging Artists Showcase Selected Artist! - June 6, 2009

 

Wow, I can't believe it's been SIX MONTHS since I posted an entry here. Half a YEAR has flown by? How does this happen?

Well, in that half a year I've had some of the most fun I've ever had in my life. I spent three joyful and creative months in the studio making my new CD "Many Moons," which arrived in early May and has been getting rave reviews! I'm so proud of it. I sang at my friend Larry's stupendous CD release concert. Once released from the happy captivity of the studio, I spent a couple weeks in Tucson in May, performing and hiking and sunning and meeting new friends.

Then at the end of May, I joined my co-writer friend Larry Murante at Kerrville Folk Festival (my first time; that's called a Kerr-virgin!) for the New Folk finals as well as nearly two weeks of singing and playing around campfires, attending amazing concerts, swimming in the river, meeting tons of new friends, stargazing, hooting and hollering, crying over staggering songs, laughing till my abs hurt, drinking tequila (yes, me! Kat Eggleston says she'd have PAID to see that) and generally having a marvelously magical time. Yes, I'm a Kerrvert now!

And THEN, just before boarding my flight home the other day, I got word that I'm a 2009 Falcon Ridge Emerging Artists Showcase Selected Artist! Always a dream of mine. It's an amazing festival, one of the biggest in the country, featuring many of my favorite performers. The Emerging Artists Showcase is legendary. I'm so delighted.

Now it's summer (almost) and I have lots of gigs and a wonderful new CD to share (and my CD release coming up! June 28 on Vashon--email to reserve) and I'm going to the Northeast in July for Falcon RIdge and the Bitter End and to see my family and friends.

Life is good.

Update on CD and more! - January 29, 2009

 

Wow, it's been a while since I posted anything. Since August! So busy. Did a lot of writing with Larry Murante this fall. We've co-written several songs together and are working on more. It works well! Also still writing a lot of my own stuff.

Went into the studio late fall,and the CD is coming together! No title yet, but have 12 original songs (more actually, but that's how many will go on this CD). I'm THRILLED to have Cary Black, Paul Elliott, and Dan Tyack back on board with their sweet sounds, and excited that they're excited too! Also will have Jami Sieber, a cellist new to me but highly recommended. I love cello and this CD wants it! It's more fun and satisfying and creative and cool and fortifying and expressive than I can say, making this CD. It feels like my work. and it's creating. I can't wait for you all to hear it. It should be out mid- spring. Hard work, but no purer joy.

Meanwhile I've played a bit last quarter--Oct. Luna show, December show at The Red Bike on vashon, the upcoming house concert with larry Murante and Mark Wells that we are all SO jazzed about, and a Tacoma gig in February. And I had an INCREDIBLE opportunity at end of Dec/beginning January, attending a songwriter's intensive retreat with masters Darrell Scott and Mary Gauthier. In Costa Rica, no less. OMG. Intense all right! In the best ways. 'nuff said.

But mostly, I'm focused on recording, recording, recording (and how to pay for it!) Like most artists--angels are always appreciated with utter gratitude.  Donations and CD sales make a difference. I'm looking forward to sharing this new music with the world in 09, and keep on writing, and see what happens!

More to come!

Robyn

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