New music coming!

It’s happening. I’ve had two publishers accept my book and I’ve singed with one of them. I’m excited to start sharing more about the novel and the accompanying studio album soon. I’m hopeful in the next few weeks, I’ll be able to get your more details on that.

Until then, and to celebrate, I’m going to release a bunch of demos I’ve written over the last six months.

This weekend I hope to get them recorded and in fair enough shape to share.

It means a few late nights for me, but it’ll be great.

Look for the new music on or cdbaby. The rest of the streaming world shortly thereafter.

It’s time to tell the truth…

I’ve eluded to it for a while now. I’ve even hash-tagged it from time to time. But it is time to tell you straight up.

I’ve written an novel. It is a quiet story. A love story. Tragic. Mythical. Hopeful.

I’ve written an accompanying album that follows the perspectives and moods of the characters.

I’m proud of both. In the coming months, I hope to share them with you. In fact, I can’t wait.

The 5 tricks to being a successful musician…. or anything

Last night on a jog, I listened to a CDbaby podcast called DIY musician. The topic was “25 ways you’re sabotaging your carreer.” In general, I really enjoy the podcasts and pick and choose from their huge catalog of topics.

I also use CDbaby for a lot of my distribution and even CD printing. I’ve found them super easy to work with and efficient at distributing my music on the majority of platforms available. Even with my current use, I’m sure I underutilized the tools they have available to me.

I tend to skip through the first 10 minutes or so of the podcasts because the chatting is often off topic, and really, I my runs don’t long enough for the entire show 🙂 But I always find some pearls in the episodes that I file away for later use.

In this episode, they go through a long list of ways people tend to hurt their music careers. (They also reference another FAVORITE podcast of my, The Working Songwriter by Joe Pug – LISTENT TO THIS!!)

After the 6th or 7th bullet point, I started noticing a trend that continued through the entire episode. In my opinion, there are really 5 things that are important to becoming a “successful” musician. And let me clarify that I’m defining the term success as maximizing one’s potential – not necessarily by album streams or number of festival headlining acts. And I honestly think these rules would apply to anything. Work, a relationship, school, canoeing.

So I could go on and on about this, but I’ll just lay them out here.


  1. Be kind
  2. Be consistent (or reliable) 
  3. Be persistent
  4. Be patient
  5. Be prepared 

The secret 6th that is necessary for all of the above to work is to work hard. In fact, I don’t think you really can do all of the five “tricks” without working hard. Sure, I think you could play with the semantics of these points and come up with alternate scenarios to find a few more, but when it comes down to it, you’ll go a lot further with just these qualities. They are general, sure, but they will always work in your favor one way or another.

Will we all achieve every single goal we set for ourselves, no. Will we have to re-adjust our sights or change our course from time to time? Yes. Will there be times we aren’t quite sure what our goals are and where we are going? Of course. But keeping these points in mind will keep you moving forward and open further opportunities, musically or otherwise. What does it take to do anything challenging in life? It takes flexibility and tenacity among other things. But it’s a lot easier to put in the hard work when we are doing it for something we enjoy.

Some exceptions to these rules that were a bit more specific on the podcast, and very interesting, were things like “don’t spend time re-working old material” or somthing like that. That might escape these five. What what is Kylo Ren tells Rey?

Yeah, that might lie outside of this short list 🙂 You’ll surely find value in listening to the podcast that inspired this post.

I know this is a different post than I usually share, but I couldn’t seem to get these words out of my mind another way. Countless others have written Barnes and Noble’s full of books on the topics of success, and I don’t think this post adds anything to the literature other than the fact that I wrote it (which I enjoyed:)

So there you go. If you agree, let me know! If you don’t, great! Let me know about that too! Have you seen these qualities or others play an important role in your music or life? I’m sure I missed something, so let me know!

Now that was fun

Last Sunday I drove through the rain to Trempealeau Hotel to play an afternoon gig with Dave Schipper and Lynn.

We shared stories and songs and I relaxed while listening to Lynn and Dave (who play together as the band Lucky Dog) harmonize.

My new Delphina mic from ear trumpet labs continues to perform amazingly. I honestly feel like the microphone was made specifically for the type of music I play in the venues that I tend to haunt. It has been a great fit.

Messenger once I send a special thank you to Dave for asking me to play the set with him. I really enjoyed myself can’t wait to get out again.

Today! Excited to swap some songs!

This weekend has been wonderful and the rain today is welcome. Though it will push our outside gig today inside of Trempealeau Hotel, but I can hardly think of a better way to spend the afternoon then swapping original music with a good friend.

Today starts a nice run of shows for me. It’s an opportunity to share some new songs and practice song old ones.

Hope to see you out and about this summer!

Something new: hosting an open mic for the summer

It’s pretty cool thing. I get the opportunity to host an open mic this summer at grounded coffee House in La Crosse. The first Tuesday of every month I’ll get my gear set up and provide an opportunity for others to share their gifts or try something new. I’m hoping over the summer we start to get more people coming out and sharing songs they’ve written or excerpts from books or poems.

I was the only one to play guitar and sing for most of last week’s first open mic but as the night went on I had the opportunity to play back up to several folks who wanted to sing a favorite song or two. It put me in a position I’m not As familiar with. I don’t always spend time harmonizing with other singers.

But it’s opportunities like this that push us a little bit outside of our comfort zone and help us grow. Can’t wait for the next show!

Recording at Carpetbooth Studios – Rochester, Mn

I spent two long days last weekend recording 10 songs for my upcoming project. I’ve never recorded in a studio before. It was so amazing. Zach from Carpetbooth was wonderful. I had been practicing my songs for a while and had a couple ideas of things to add but he and his team did a great job capturing my songs and finding ways to add depth to the recording

It was snowing on the last weekend of April which made it all the more special.

In the first day I recorded all 10 songs (one of which I wrote two days prior) and Zach laid down bass tracks of each. He was wise and encouraged me to take a break. It has been 10 hours. We would start drums and vocals in the morning.

I got to press a few buttons and Zach worked his way through the drums. The percussion added a lot to these tunes. Sometimes it highlighted my tendency to slow down and speed up when playing. Not always a good thing when playing with others. But he and Wyatt, one of the interns (Charlie being the other one – both amazing musicians) worked through it.

The biggest question in all this, is, when the mix it down, how will it all feel? Will we need more or will it feel complete? I know for certain this will effect how i move forward in recording. Yes, I’ve got other plans for recording. Maybe not all the studio, but lots in the works.

Before we finished on Sunday, I had to crawl into the baptismal tub in the back of the studio. The studio had been freshly converted from an old church.

I honestly can’t wait to share these new songs with you. And I’m also working hard to get my book published. The two projects are companions.

Thanks for reading and have a great weekend!