What's Shakin': June 2015
2015 has gotten off to a great start. In January I released two new CD's, "The Traveling Texas Collection" and 'Pure"(an unplugged acoustic album). It was a blast! I also re-released the "Live at the Centrum" as a CD only, for those who did not want the CD/DVD set. You can order them here. I also did a "Month of Sunday" shows at the Mucky Duck.
Thank you all for coming out and making it fun and a huge success. I have also been busy (as usual) traveling Texas and playing shows around the Lone Star state with Michael Hearne and Mike Roberts. We've played so many wonderful house concerts and venues so far this year. There was the Concert on the River, Sycamore Creek house concert, Sandy and James Carroll's house concert in Spring, TX., and Paul Barker's H.C. in Austin. In April, Anni Clark came down to Texas from Maine and we played a few dates on our "Merry Ellen Featherstone Memorial Blue Bonnet Tour".
Merry Ellen, Anni Clark & Shake
It was Merry Ellen who introduced Anni and I many years ago. We use to do our annual Blue Bonnet Tour with Merry Ellen riding shotgun with Anni to all the shows. On this tour, dedicated to her memory, her ashes rode shotgun with Anni and her son David on the tour. David came in from California to do the little tour with us. It was special to have him here with us. There were many Ma'ell stories shared along the way. Merry Ellen's ashes were in attendance at all the shows and scattered in many of her favorites places. Ma'ell, you were an inspiration to all who had the very good fortune to have met you. I count myself blessed to have been one those people. I miss you "Aunt MerryE". She was pretty much my other Mother.
It was a wonderful Mothers Day celebration at the Bernhardt Winery in Plantersville, TX. (hosted by Jerri and Jerry Bernhardt). Several hundred folks showed up on Sunday evening with their lawn chairs, blankets, picnic baskets, coolers, and yes, even umbrellas, just in case. There were mothers of all ages in attendance. Being it was Mother's Day, well, mother nature smiled on us with just a few sprinkles and a couple of brief light showers. There were Mother Day poems, sunset toasts, and the day turned into a very pleasant evening, with a cool breeze blowing, with parents, children, and even dogs dancing the night away. We love playing the winery in it's beautiful setting. This was another one to remember.
With Spring nearly over and as we move into summer I have had some great shows. On May 23, we were in Galveston at Uncle Wreck's Old Quarter Acoustic Cafe. Mike Roberts and I swappted songs and stories. Come see us when we play there next. On May 24th I was at T BONE TOMS in Kemah, TX. It's a family fun restaurant and live music venue down by the water, with balmy breezes blowing, margarita's flowing, good food and live music from 7-11pm. Mike Roberts and I will had a special guest sitting in with us, singer songwriter, guitarist, Claude Butch Morgan. It will be an added treat to have Butch picking and singing along.
The following Wednesday night, May 27th, Butch and I joined Mr. Bob Cheevers at Z Tejas on 6th street in Austin. The three of us swapped songs and tall tales, and jamming away together from 6-10pm. The shows are never twice the same and always exploratory and always fun at Z Tejas. So, stop on by after work and have some great food, a cold drink, and hear a few tunes before you head home. There's never a cover charge and easy valet parking. Mark your calendar - we play the third Wednesday each month. June 17th is the next gig..
"Raising a Hand for Retts" - photo by Dave Clements
Shake solo @ McGonigel's Mucky Duck.
HAPPY 25TH BIRTHDAY McGonigel's Mucky Duck!! HAPPY ANNIVERSARY !! Congratulations RUSTY AND TERESA. Here's a toast to you both, to all the hard work and time you've put into making the Mucky Duck the number one premier live music venue in Houston, TX. Thank you both for having this dream 25 years ago and allowing all of us to be a part of it. I'm proud to have been a part of the Duck's history and looking forward to being a part of the future. Here is to your continued success and to another 25 years of music! HAPPY 25TH BIRTHDAY!! The party and celebrations lasts the entire month of June. I will be doing my 'Shake Solo Shows' every Sunday evening from 6pm-7:30pm (except for Father's Day Sunday). So come on out and bring some requests and maybe even join in and clap and sing along if you feel it. Please mark your calendars, pick a Sunday, and drop by the Duck and help me celebrate the Duck turning 25 years old. There are songs to be sung and stories to be told.
Debbie, Shake & Dave, of the Sailing Angels
THE SAILING ANGELS: Last summer I met Debbie Hughes, a member of the ' Sailing Angels Organization. Debbie asked me about writing a song for the group for an upcoming event to thank, recognize, and honor all the volunteers and donors who make this charity possible. They are a group of volunteers out of Kemah, TX. spearheaded by Dave McCabe aka ' Captain Dave'. They donate their time and boats to provide children with special needs, and also wounded warriors and their families, the experience of sailing and of being part of the crew for the day. They also benefit from the inherent therapeutic value of sailing and the motion of the waves and the boat on the water. All of this provided at no expense to the families. The angels only reward is seeing the smiles and joy it brings to everyone at the end of the day. I was given material on the Sailing Angels, articles, and interviews with the volunteers and Captain Dave. I read of all their good work they do, and I knew I had to write this song for them. "SAILING ANGELS". My old friend John Inmon was kind enough to volunteer his time and studio. He produced, engineer, and played all instruments on the track. Mike Roberts also contributed additional backing vocals on the song. You can find out more about the organization and hear the song and see the slideshow of the angel volunteers here. The song will soon be available for download on this website. Proceeds will go to the Angel's Organization. You can watch a video of the song on my video page.
MICHAEL HEARNE'S BIG BARN DANCE: Michael's Music Festival in Taos, NM. is another very important event coming up on September 10-12th. This will be the thirteenth year for the festival and promises to be the best one yet! This year it will be held in town at the Kit Carson Park. I know you may think Shake, it's a long ways off, but I suggest you start your planning now. You may go to Michael Hearne's website to find out more details about the festival. Make your plans now. It will be a beautiful time to be in Taos, NM. Come join us and see and hear what we've been talking and raving about for the past thirteen years.
Thanks to my webmaster, Steven Ray Austin there are some changes on my website. We now have a video page where you may access videos, both past, recent, present and in between. Hey let's take a ride in the way back machine. We will also have a new Shake's Store up soon, with all kinds of merchandise available, CD's, sheet music, DVD's, tee shirts, home grown Cowboy Coffee, coffee mugs, beautifully handmade jewelry created from my used guitar strings by Sandy Carroll and engraving by "Father James" Carroll, etc. There will also be a "Shakes Singles" section consisting of newly recorded songs which will be posted up and available for downloading.
So stay tuned for more news on what's coming up. There's a lot going on and more to come this year. Be sure and sign up to my email list so I can keep you posted on upcoming shows in your area. I hope to see you all out at a show this summer.
Down the road I go,