Thursday, July 27, 2006

Tuesday Jam going away?

Hello Friends, it's been a while.

First, the bad news: the lovely Wanda has informed me that Tuesday, August 1st will be our last Tuesday Jam at Nik's Place. For whatever reason, not enough people have been coming out and spending on Tuesdays in recent weeks, so she has to try something else. She's bringing in Johnny Knox (the best rockabilly guitarist I know next to Brian Setzer) and I'm not sure if it will be a jam. I don't have a Tuesday gig nailed down for us yet, I'm asking around. Let me know if you have possibilities for us to investigate.

This is not an evil act on Wanda or Nik's part, so be nice to them; it's just a part of the business. They have bills to pay, and need to draw a spending crowd. To a venue owner, a band is only as good as the dollars they bring in. Venue owners rarely care much how good a band is, the bottom line is "how many people will you bring me, and are they spenders?" The real strength of Kiss was the Kiss Army; the Grateful Dead stayed alive so long because they had legions of devoted Deadheads. When you hear musicians say "Keep the blues alive" or "Thank you for supporting live music", remember that we really do need you and your business in order to keep doing what we do. I really do thank all of you who've come out, even just once, for helping to keep music (and musicians) alive. You regulars, who come out often, you totally rock.

So, to recap: ONE LAST HOO-HAA at Nik's Place, Tuesday August 1st
Nik's Place
645 Whitlock Av. (aka Hwy GA-120)
about 1 mile west of Marietta Square
Marietta GA 30064 770-792-6666

Moving on: Those of you who came out to Tavern On The Bridge last week noticed that my usual partner, Andrew Black, had apparently been to Sweden for a very successful operation. Not really, that was the lovely & talented Marlyn Campbell, and we had a great time. Why didn't I tell you she'd be there? Because Andrew was going away on vacation, and it's a bad policy to spread the word that someone will be away from their home for several days. But he's back now, and last night the three of us turned out some good music. Good enough that we'll be back as a trio next week, and who knows after that. Don't miss out.
Tavern On The Bridge
9775 Medlock Bridge Rd., Suite A.
Duluth, 30097 770-232-1210
Nice room, good food.
S.E. corner of State Bridge Rd. & Medlock Bridge (Hwy 141)
One door south of Stony River.

This Friday, my friend Brian Stephens' new band Ocean Street will be throwing a "pre-CD-release-party-party" at a new venue in Roswell called The Saloon. The band will be there at 8PM to meet, greet & hand out swag, then will play at 10PM. Todd Smalley (of Derek Trucks Band) will be on bass. Brian says the response & buzz from their 3-song demo was great, getting a fair amount of airplay on Dave FM and others, and "tons of podcast plays" out to a huge global audience.

Then on Saturday, is throwing their first Subscriber Party which will feature a great free show with Barry Richman Band, and opening band Lyric, at The Langford. This is free to their newsletter subscribers, and all that requires is that you go here:
and sign up for a weekly newsletter. (Or, you can subscribe at the party). They will not overspam you, nor sell or rent you to spammers; they aren't collecting too much info, they don't even want to know your name. Then you get the free beverages, free t-shirt or tank top, and maybe other goodies.
The doors open at 7:30 pm
(Lyric, 8 - 9 pm; The Barry Richman Band, 9:15 pm - 12 am)
See the details on the front page at
Langford Sound & Stage
633 Holcomb Bridge Road
in the corner of the Roswell Village Shopping Center
Roswell, GA 30076 770-518-9151

PS, this party is free and open to all ages. I encourage my students to attend. Bring the whole family, tell friends. Forward this email.

And finally, here's a list of lost souls from whom I've been getting email bounces. If you know these folks, please help us reconnect.

Bob Augestad
Kate Mullin
Jonathan Mock
Marcus Petruska
Lara Polangco
Paul Garrett
Toby Huffner
J Shelley (or Stelley?)
Gaylon Nelson
Tom Regeski
Seth Watters
Melina Birdsong
Kerry Creasy
Ruthie Smith
Jerry Hendricks
Lance Tilton
Bryan & Kim Hutton
Samantha Hart
Sarah Malkin
Sheila Ledford
Shawn Harris
Tammie King
Rod Kelly
Morris Borenstein
Christopher Afful
Cindi Carbone
Brad Haddad
Debra Fedorchak

Just a suggestion: Get a web-based email account. Jobs change, ISPs change, people move. And some companies really get nasty about what goes through your email; all companies monitor, and when they want to "downsize" you, your email is the first place they look for excuses. You're much better off getting your email through a free web-based system; Yahoo Mail is usually the top award winner among those. (Then, remember NOT to access your private email account while at work!) You can access your email from anywhere in the world that has Internet, from public libraries to Amsterdam coffeehouses. Stability is great; I've had at least a half-dozen ISPs since 1985, but when I got my Rocketmail address (now owned by Yahoo) in 1997, that has been unchanged for nearly a decade. If you have a non-work email address, I strongly suggest you update me so I don't send my emails through your employer.
Yahoo Mail:
Google Gmail:

Friday, July 07, 2006


Gophertunes, brainchild of guitarist/singer Pete Waddell, has finally popped its furry little head into the world. This website is an online guide to live music in the Atlanta area. It lets you search by zip code, type of music, date, venue or artist. Want to know where I'll be playing? If I have a public show under my own name, it'll be posted there. (Shows where I'm a member of someone else's band are up to them to post, for a variety of reasons) You can also find (if posted) individual artist bios and contact info, or venue info. Gophertunes also writes their own stories, artist interviews and reviews, and they've published one of my instructional articles. Owned & operated by & for musicians, the emphasis is simple: music. You won't have to wade through lots of "community calendar" announcements for dramatic readings, quilting clubs, or other stuff that can be found on existing sites. Gophertunes has great potential and I will try to make the most of it. I strongly suggest you should too.
PS, the furry mascot's name is Mojo.

Moving on: Jesse Smith, 1968 - 2006

My nephew-in-law Jesse has gone away, after a long struggle with Hodgkin's disease. One of the nicest people I ever knew, and one of the giants of the ballroom dance world, Jesse was beloved by everyone who met him. He and his wife Lynda (my niece) were undefeated dance champions, competing and teaching all over the world. Jesse was also featured in an episode of HGTV's "TIPical Mary Ellen". Here's his obituary from the Minneapolis Star-Tribune:

Smith, Jesse E. age 37, of Minneapolis. Professional ballroom dancer and owner of Arthur Murray Dance Studio of Minneapolis/ Edina, MN. Survived by wife, Lynda; children, Dayton and Elyse; mother, Mary Louise Bodinski; father, Jesse Smith; siblings, Therese Larson, Stephen Clausen and Nejla Smith; grandmother, Alice Smith; many loving family members and friends. Jesse was born and raised in Sioux Falls, SD and moved to Minneapolis in 1988 where he began his professional dance career. He began dancing competitively with Lynda in 1990 and went on to achieve four U.S. American Style ballroom titles. After retiring from competition, Jesse continued to achieve excellence in the international dance world and was highly sought after as a teacher, choreographer, coach, judge and performer. He was a member of the Arthur Murray World Dance Board and an area Chairman for Arthur Murray International. Although Jesse's professional accomplishments were many, being a loving and devoted husband and father gave him the most joy. Memorials may be directed to the Jesse Smith Miracle Gift Fund. Interment service 9 AM Monday, July 10 at Lakewood Cemetery Chapel, 36th & Hennepin Ave S. Service will follow at 11 AM at Hope Presbyterian Church, 7132 Portland Ave S., Richfield. Washburn-McReavy Edina Chapel 952-920-3996

The obit doesn't mention his loving in-laws (my brother Gary Price and his wife Joyce, also of Minneapolis) who are also deeply greiving. My heartfelt condolences go out to the whole family, and to his worldwide family of friends, students and fans.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Marietta Square show a Major Success!

Friday June 30th at the Marietta Square was flippin' amazing! I had no idea that it would be such a major event or I would've made a lot more noise about it in my newsletters. My guess is 5,000 people packed into the square for a Chastain-like experience, complete with a row of reserved tables, candles, flowers in glass vases, etc. When I got there for 4:45 soundcheck, the grassy parts had already filled with lawn chairs. The city even blocks the street behind the stage, and that fills with audience watching us from behind (making it interesting to play in both directions). Most of you haven't seen the full Andrew Black & The Naturals show, and I must say it's a big'un. We had Andrew, Jon Schwenke on bass, Ben Taylor on drums, myself, female vocalists Kim & Bobbi, and Marcus & Adam (of King Johnson) on sax & trombone. The northwest sky looked threatening, so we started 15 minutes early, rocked the joint until about 9, took a short break and hit 'em again until the storm finally did arrive, ending the show exactly 15 minutes early with very theatrical lightning and wind effects. There was a moment at the ending of the next to last song, I was flailing my guitar on the final chord, holding it up high, facing the rear audience, the furious gust front of the coming storm blowing in my face, the lightning, the thunder, the shouting applause... it was like being Charlton Heston as Moses in "The Ten Commandments". What a rush! Then we ended on "Sweet Home Marietta", complete with a reference to The Big Chicken, and finished just as the fat raindrops started pelting the crowd. For us, the storm wasn't bad - the storm came in from behind us so we pulled our gear downstage a few feet and started packing - by the time things were in cases, the storm had blown through, so we weren't trapped long. I know that some of you were there taking pictures, and I sure would love to have copies, please. I'll post the best ones in my blog as soon as I get them.

Saturday I did a new venue (for me anyway), Rafters at Jones Bridge and State Bridge, with Jon Schwenke and Jack Jones. I like that place, the staff is extremely nice and the room is laid out in a way that makes sense for live music; the stage area is on one end, pointed out an open sliding door so a lot of sound vents outward, not at the bar area. There's a dance floor, low tables, and the bar is above and somewhat behind the stage. Then the restaurant area is on the other side, kept airtight to seal out any smoke and noise from the bar. The whole venue works very well, and I like & recommend Rafters.

William and Ricky, you're not forgotten.

Remember to celebrate the 4th; stick up for sticking up. Nothing is more American than the ability to think for yourself and speak your mind. Your "country" mostly boils down to your rights & freedoms, so guard them all (especially free speech) and don't let anyone whittle them down while telling you it's to preserve them. Some of our founding fathers, especially Ben Franklin, warned against exactly that. This is the week when we especially remember and celebrate our ancestors' struggle, and just as we don't want to dishonor our current troops we sure don't want to dishonor those who fought directly for THIS soil, THESE people, making sacrifices and efforts you can barely imagine. Remember their work with pride, maintain it with determination. That's being a Patriot.