Muse Letter, June 2018

A Team, A Family, More Gratitude 

A lot of the stories I grew up with valued the individual - individual achievement – individual toughness. What I have learned and continue to learn is the importance of team as well as significance and value of family in its many forms.  

That being said I’d like to thank some important members of my team and family. I will begin by thanking my wife, Pat, who does so much to help bring Songs and Stories to life.  Jonathan and Jennifer Lockhart offer technical as well as moral support. Jonathan was one of the first to join the team eight years ago as Webmaster and Jennifer is a valued new addition.  

Beyond My Comfort Zone 

Al Bergstein and George Rezendes were essential to creating One of Those Times in a Life. Al created the videos and George the audios. These days they are adding their talents as consultants – helping me – finally – become comfortable creating audios and videos at home.  

One of the themes of One of Those Times in a Life was how the darkness of the secret and unspoken can be transformed by the light of a story. Our family’s secret had to do with diseases of the mind – mental illnesses. For me that has meant spending a lifetime dealing with anxiety. Thanks to Al and George I am continuing to face my anxieties as I create and share Songs and Stories from HOME! (literally and figuratively)  

Things Always Seem To Take Longer… 

The updated website went live on May 1st. It then took a few more weeks to get the first Song and Story onto the site. My apologies for the delay and my gratitude for those who kept coming back until there was something to come back for. 

Songs and Stories From Hom

Last month’s Songs and Stories from Home talked mostly about where we are going and how we hope to get there. This month the Songs and Stories will explore the power of song and story in our lives and over a lifetime.  

Gratitude, Grit, and Grace 

As many of you know, when we lit the 49th and final campfire for One of Those Times in a Life – at a concert at Benaroya Hall in May of 2017 - we also released an album of new songs as part the journey. All 15 songs from that album were introduced at the Benaroya concert. Last month we shared the concert video, the audio recording, as well as background about the song Blessings of the Heart. This month we are doing the same for the song My Fears Don’t Scare Me Like They Used To.  

Visiting the Vault 

Because it took a while to get the website up and running, we did not open The Vault in May. This month I will be sharing some of the story and one of the songs I wrote to celebrate my cousin, Jane’s, life. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in the fall of 1992. After hearing the news I told her that every Friday until she was cured I would send her a postcard from wherever I was. Seventy postcards later she was gone. I was with her the last day of her life. After she died I wrote about her life framed by that final day. It is called “One Dying Day in the Circle of Life.”  

 Patreon 

A big THANK YOU to those who have become patrons. 

As we continue to share more “Songs and Stories from Home” I will continue to “invite” you to become more involved by making a financial contribution. All those nights back in the day we called it “passing the hat.” Somehow it’s returned to that after all these years. These days the “hat” is virtual but the gratitude is as real as ever.  If you would like to contribute, please visit my page on Patreon.

Long Ago and Far Away 

The Brothers Four signed with Fantasy Records in 1970. For years Fantasy-Galaxy Records was the world’s largest independent jazz label. Known for the colorful vinyl of their albums, they also released recordings of cutting edge comedians like Lenny Bruce. In 1967 Saul Zaentz bought the company and offered a Bay Area rock group, the Golliwogs, a chance to record a full length album - on what became known simply as Fantasy Records - if they agreed to change their name. They decided to call themselves Creedence Clearwater Revival. The money the group earned for the company allowed Zaentz to move from music to movies. Among the films he produced were One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and Amadeus.  

A few years ago, The Brothers Four Fantasy Years was released in Japan on a double CD. The picture here is the cover photo of the album 1970. The song is one I wrote called “I Will Be There.” Some interesting production values including playing tape backwards.     

The Brothers Four | Fantasy Years
The Brothers Four | Fantasy Years

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  1. I Will Be There

Performances

At this time I’m not performing a lot but any scheduled performances will be listed on the Muse Letter. 

July 27th

Saratoga Springs, NY

An Evening With The Brothers Four

The Brothers Four

July 28th

Rockport, MA

An Evening With The Brothers Four

The Brothers Four

July 29th

Wrentham, MA

An Evening With The Brothers Four

The Brothers Four

Sept 1st

Coyle, WA

Mark Pearson, Concerts in the Woods

Mark Pearson

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