Thumb that thumb piano. Thumb it like you’ve never thumbed before.

I have a new toy.

I know what you’re thinking — “Enough with the toys already! Do you have any room left for them? Why don’t you buy a squadger and be done with it!”

(A squadger, for those who don’t know, is what happens when a squirrel and a badger get together and make sweet woodland creature love.)

But this toy is neither large nor expensive. It’s something that was found while investigating fun little musical items at the Green Earth store with Smooryl. They’ve got some nifty little trinkets there, they do. I’ve wanted a kalimba for a while now, and at about ten bucks, how can you resist? If only my little video camera hadn’t decided to distort a bit on some of the notes I was playing.

I hope everyone had a spiffy New Year’s Eve. Mine was pretty spiffy indeed, and the first time I’ve ever actually had a date for New Year’s Eve. A DATE! Can you believe it? I was reluctant to go anyplace loud, but we ended up at Phog (happy sixth anniversary, Phog phellas) where Lonesome Lefty was playing, and fun was had. I felt awkward wearing those big air traffic control headphones so I threw in some unobtrusive earplugs instead, and they did a surprisingly good job of saving me from old my nemesis Stuff That Is Really Loud.

I guess the “recluse” part of this blog’s sub-heading is accurate after all. I ran into at least half a dozen people who seemed somewhat shocked to see me out somewhere in a social setting. It was kind of funny. But there you go. I do exist after all. Matt Rideout came over to say hello, and he said some very nice things to me about the WAMM cover story thing. I like that guy. I don’t know him well, but it was fun playing with him for that big Field Assembly full-band album release show back in the summer, and you can’t deny that the man grows an impressive beard. He also looks snazzy in a suit and tie.

It seems the box of my CDs at Dr. Disc is pretty barren once again, so I will be replenishing it tomorrow. It’s also time to head to Minuteman Press to get some inserts reprinted, and I need to order more clear CD jewel case trays and ink cartridges for my CD printer. Some things are practically “out of print” right now, and I need to rebuild my supplies before they drop off altogether.

Still on the fence about the Mackenzie Hall thing, but not for the reasons you might think. I like February 28th as a date. I like the idea of a Sunday show that isn’t competing with what’s going on Friday or Saturday and having it happen at 7:00 or 8:00 pm so people can get out of there at a reasonable time. But I’ve come to the realization that there will need to be a tiny bit of amplification in order to get things sounding right — not for volume, but just to add a bit of body to things. The one person I really trust to run sound is Ryan Fields, and he’s out of town at that time. So I’m not sure if I should ask someone else to do the sound and book that date, or wait until mid-March when Ryan is back in town.

I’ll make a decision one way or another by the end of this coming week. And regardless of what happens, I guess you should probably expect me to be playing a solo show sometime in the next little while, in one form or another. As always, I’ll get all long-winded about the details here as soon as I figure out what I’m going to do.


  1. A DATE! my god, how did that happen?!
    yay for magical earplugs. and i’m glad the kalimba is treating you well… i’m tempted to go back and get that heart-shaped one.

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