This week, we are thrilled to be singing
Tuesday, 6-9pm, the King George Inn, Bristol, PA. Gorgeous views, great food (amazing quinoa-stuffed pepper with truly great spinach), incredible atmosphere, great people - who are all quick studies at this love*music*happiness thing. Truly a love fest - dear friends appear - some from long ago, some brand new!
Friday, 7:30-10:30, The Ship Inn, Exton/Malvern. Our home away from home. Magic happens here, too. Good friends, good music, food and drink. Be sure to reserve a table near the music if you are thinking of coming! Near the turnpike, Rts. 100, 202 and 30. If you are planning on coming on Friday, and if you wouldn't mind having a person who is coming alone sit with you, could you please let me know?
Sunday - Private Party - yes, you can hire us to come to your house and sing to your family and friends! How cool is that?
Please support live music - so we don't have to stay home and sing to the chickens.
ps A note about next week: There are still a couple of tickets left for a benefit we are doing for Citizen Advocacy at People's Light and Theater on Tuesday, April, 26th (no King George that night!) We are singing for the dinner and silent auction, and then you will be treated to a preview performance of their new play. Citizen Advocacy has a mission very dear to our hearts. They match volunteers to help disabled people get through life. This is a desperately needed service. A man we love in New Jersey, who is in a wheelchair, is about to lose his home, because he has no one to stand up for him. That is all he needed, and he can't get it. There used to be many groups like this, but government funding has been cut, and Citizen's Advocacy is one of the few that are left. They are completely dependent on contributions. Hope you can make it out for fun and a good cause. https://www.citizenadvocacycc.org/calendar/calendar.php
New Jersey/Bristol Fun Alert
Wow, what a week last week was!
Tuesday, The King George Inn, Bristol, PA 6-9pm
Thursday, The Captain's Inn, Forked River, NJ 6-10pm If it is warm, we may play outside on the dock with the sailboats and palm trees!
Saturday, Private Party We have 5 private parties to sing at in 1 month! We treasure being asked to help people celebrate the big moments of life. I can't describe how special it is to be included as part of a family or group of friends that isn't our family or our normal group of friends, to get to be a part of something that we never would have without music connecting us to people who start out as strangers and end up in our hearts. Book us now for your summer party, as dates are going FAST!
Now, I am going up to the studio to get something, anything, done. There has been so much going on, I haven't been in there for over a week. I'm going back in.
Love & Peace, Donna & Dave
Dear Friend, We are thrilled to be singing tomorrow night, Friday, 7:30-10:30, at The Ship Inn, Exton/Malvern, @ the intersection of Routes 202 and 30, south of the Valley Forge turnpike exit, just east of Rt. 100. We love this place more every month. Cozy, great food and drink, loveable staff, and best of all, people come to listen or sing along! What great spirit and warmth they bring! We usually end up throwing away our set list & doing requests all night. We hope to have 2 new cover songs ready by tomorrow, although it is iffy still: Let Your Love Flow, an old chestnut from 60's, performed by the Bellamy Brothers, but written by a roadie of Neil Diamond - Larry Williams. Larry offered it to Neil, but Neil didn't like it. We are grateful to Larry, who managed to encapsulate our entire message in one song so we don't have to. The other song is the delightful and charming, Our House, CSNY, which is also pretty much our story, except we have two poodles, not cats. Our House will mark the first song I have learned on the piano that I didn't write, and THAT is what makes the debut of Our House iffy.
We strongly recommend reservations - be sure to tell them you are coming for the music, or you won't be able to hear (610-363-7200). If you find yourself coming alone and would like someone to sit with, let me know, and I will try to find you some music-appreciator companions. And please remember, we can't do any of this without you. I can sit and practice for hours a day and agonize over songs that want to be written until they are properly birthed, but without people to share them, it is all for naught. Let's make some magic, because we can! www.shipinn.net
Next week: Tuesday, we are doing a Valentine's Day show for the older folks; Thursday, we are singing at the shore at The Captain's Inn (we get to see all our shore friends!), and then Friday, we are thrilled to be doing an all original show with the Hynes's at Arlene's son's place, Hot Rods, in Morristown, NJ. How we love those Hynses!
We are creeping forward, progress-wise, on the new CD. Dave just wrote a super cute blues song about loving to drink water, Sweet Water, so now we have another song to add to the record. He has also created some hot electric guitar licks and organ solos for a couple of my rowdier songs on the new recording, so that is fun to hear at the end of the day. For The Garden, I have asked him to create an electric guitar solo that symbolizes the earth coming from turmoil to clarity over millennia. He is almost there.
Hoping you have all successfully dug yourselves out by now, with as few orthopedic complications as possible, and you are ready for some musical fun. We invite you to join us this Friday night at Broad Run Golf Club, 7-10pm. Always cozy and intimate, fireplace going, sweeping views of a big, sparkling valley, comfy chairs and tables or a beautiful bar to perch at - the perfect place to spend a cold winter's night. Very relaxed place - you are welcome to request songs, sing along, or just tuck yourself in and soak in the love*music*happiness.
Next Friday, Feb. 5 - The Ship Inn.
The coming week finds Dave & I singing our little hearts out in NJ and PA. Thursday night, we will be singing from 6-10pm inside at The Captain's Inn, Forked River, NJ. The inside is cozy and fun; with the darkness outside and the twinkly lights inside, we hardly even miss the sailboats and palm trees outside. Friday night, we will be singing 7:30-10:30 at The Ship Inn, Exton/Malvern (easy to reach from many places, as it is at the intersection of Routes 202 and 30, south of the PA turnpike, Rt. 422 and the Schuylkill).
We are dusting off our Christmas carols, the ones we wrote and the ones we didn't. If you would like to add the ones we wrote to your Christmas music collection, they are available for purchase for $1 in our website store. We also have gift cards for most of our recorded songs, also $1. Here Comes Another Christmas is a happy Christmas tune. Dave had the melody in his head for a while, and he asked me to work on the lyric with him. We put our heads together to celebrate in song all the joys of the season. Dave made the music video using footage he shot on our trips to see the Christmas decorations in Paris, London, and NY. Here is a link to the music video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atgZZu72ziE.
Last year, we also recorded and made a video of the first song I wrote: Christmas Has Come Back To Me. When Dave and I got together, I had been alone at Christmas for almost 20 years. I had never written a song, and I asked Dave if he could write a song for me about what it means to lose Christmas and then have someone give it back to you. One dark December night, I made a list for Dave of everything I got back, so that he could write the song, but then I woke up at 4am with the words and melody to the chorus playing in my head. I don't know where songs come from, but Dave somehow taught me how to catch them. I have written many songs in the last couple of years, but this first one will always be the most special. I have heard from people around the country that the song has given them hope. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xt1zi1H9CWw
We wish you a happy, healthful, peaceful, joyous holiday season, a season of kindness, connection and love. Our performance on Friday is our last in a club for 2015. We are very grateful for all of you! Please send good thoughts our way, as we settle into winter, as we settle into our quiet work of writing and recording, hopefully more songs that will cheer people and help them along their way.
America. Democracy. If you are a person who can look at these words and not feel compelled to action, rejoice! For some reason, I have grown to believe the mantle of responsibility is on MY shoulders to create the kind of government that reflects what I hold dear - because I can, because I live in a democracy, and our fate is in our own hands. This one idea of mine means that the election season is a kind of torturous hell for me, because I don't like it at all, but feel compelled to work 12-15 hours a day, to do my part to make the world a kinder, gentler place. And now poor Dave gets sucked into the mix.
So, it is with a huge sigh of relief that I leave behind all things electoral to write this Fun Alert, that I get to use my love of words and music and people for the purpose of life-enhancing connection and fun and happiness, without the fate of a nation on my shoulders - although if we could grow and expand our connection and fun and happiness, that would truly affect our nation and world, so maybe it is all the same thing anyway.
Thursday, we will be singing our little hearts out at The Captain's Inn, Forked River, NJ, 6-10pm. We will be inside in the lounge - it is sadly no longer palm tree and sailboat weather. The lounge has a fireplace and twinkly white lights, so no complaints.
Friday, we will be singing our little hearts out at The Ship Inn, Exton/Malvern, PA. What a fun place, what great people, talk about connection and fun and love! We hope you will join us, request a few songs, sing along! Endorphin-releasing activities are highly beneficial at the end of the work week!
AND, we have a new song for you and new song arrangements for you! I am finally able to take what I heard in my head for Lullabies and Fairytales and reproduce it in the real world. We sang it for the first time at our lovely concert with the Hynses and McCarrens, and it was well received (if, like me, you think tears are a sign of "well-received"), so it is now ready for you! It is a song about a parent's joy and sadness when a beloved child grows up and leaves home. We also turned Love of A Lifetime into a duet, to tug at those heartstrings just a little harder.
And one more happy piece of news! The Inn at St. Peters is going to give inside music a go! And it is going to be downstairs, where we got married! This is such a beautiful space! Probably 30+ feet of glass overlooking the streams and waterfalls and rocks, so it is sort of like being outside when the weather is not cooperating. If this sounds like a nice way to spend some time this winter, we encourage you to come out. I have a feeling that they will only continue with the inside music if it looks like people will support it. We are playing there the Sunday after Thanksgiving, Nov. 29th, 2-5pm.
Love&Peace to you, folks. Donna&Dave
It is a big week coming up for us. I first learned the word peripatetic from one of my favorite Agatha Christie books, The Man in the Brown Suit. I devoured all of Agatha's books in my early teens, and I was thrilled when I came upon a word I didn't know yet - Agatha made them all seem so romantic and exciting. I had certainly never come across peripatetic before: "traveling from place to place, especially working or based in various places for relatively short periods." And it certainly describes our week.
Thursday: The Captain's Inn, 6-10pm, Forked River, NJ
Friday: The Ship Inn, 7:30-10:30pm, Exton/Malvern, PA
Saturday: The Chester County Airport Fall Flying Festival, noon - ?
On the home front, we are diligently working on our new CD, but the more work we do, the more work we come up with to do. I thought I had just finished mixing the recording of Love Is A Two-Edged Sword, my song for people in the position of caring for a loved one in the final stages of their life, and then Dave said he wanted to do a banjo part. Banjo??? I was flummoxed! Banjo is the happiest instrument of all, and this is the saddest song of all. But then Dave helped me see that, when a BANJO is sad, well, that is really sad. So, I put off releasing the song until the banjo part is added. Linda Ronstadt's nephew, Michael Ronstadt, cellist extraordinaire, wrote a symphony of 5 cello parts for the song, weaving them in and out - really incredible work. We are working on about 4 songs at once, fingers crossed, because it never seems to end.
Please let me know if you or anyone you know would benefit from hearing the song or would like to hear the song. We are giving it away for free, as soon as it is finished.
This Friday, Dave and I will be singing our hearts out at The Ship Inn, Exton/Malvern, 7:30-10:30pm. This place has become very special to us, because they provide our friends with excellent food, drink and a place to join in with the flow of music and good will and fun. It is the kind of place where you can come with friends or come to make some new ones. For us, being there, in the midst of people who love pretty music and creating happiness, well, it is a wonderful thing to experience. If you want Friday to be a special night, come to The Ship Inn, request a few songs, sing along, or just sit back and enjoy the flow. If you would like a table, reservations are usually necessary. It was standing room only last time. We can't create magic without you. It is in your hands.
Saturday, we are singing at a surprise birthday party. We love getting to be a part of these special moments in people's lives. Not everyone realizes that you can hire us to play for house parties or house concerts, but we get to do that quite often, and it is always wonderful.
On the music front, I (Donna) have been lately overwhelmed by the writing muse. Three weeks ago, it suddenly dawned on me how truly amazing the first kiss Dave planted on me was. It happened on the street in Phoenixville a couple of years before we started dating,. Fireworks were going off, like a time-travelling message from the future, saying: Heads up! Great things are going to happen between the two of you in a couple of years. As soon as this realization dawned, I ran into the house and the fun and happy song, Kissing in the Street, just came to me, to celebrate that moment when a dear old friend becomes possibly more than a friend.
A few days later, I felt the need to write a song for the too-many people I know who find themselves in the difficult role of being the caretaker of a dear loved one at the last stages of their life. I spent 8 years helping 6 people through this. It is a great service to be able to provide, but it breaks your heart day after day. I wrote the song for one person in particular, and I felt an urgent need to get it finished for them, so it got written and recorded in one afternoon/evening. It is a beautiful but very very sad song, with a glimmer of hope at the end, and I wrote it because what helped me most when I have been super super sad is to hear a sad song that spoke to what I was going through, that gave me some hope and the feeling of not being alone. This song is called Love Is A Two-Edged Sword, and I offer the recording at no charge for anyone who thinks it would help them or someone they know. Please let me know if you would like me to send it to you. Michael Ronstadt is working on a cello part for the song right now, because you can't really have a super sad song without a cello.
Another two days later, and I got asked to write a song for the mothers who are sending their children off to college, children who have been around for 18 years and are now leaving, a song speaking to a mother's mix of joy and grief. The words and melody to that song are finished, although I want to write a very pretty piano and guitar accompaniment, and that work has only just begun. It is called Lullabies and Fairytales.
Thank you all for coming along on this journey with us.
We are VERY HAPPY to be singing this weekend at two of our very favorite warm&fuzzy places: Friday night, 7:30-10:30, at The Ship Inn, Exton/Malvern and Sunday, 2-5pm at The Inn at St. Peter's Village. Both of these gathering spots attract the kind of folks who like to really listen to our songs and be a part of the process. At The Ship Inn, we hardly even get to pick any of the songs we play, people are so clear and quick with their requests. If you want to come and be a part of something, a part of this creation of connection and fun and happiness through music, both of these spots are a fairly sure bet. St. Peters does have the rocks and waterfalls and hiking and dogs and kids and bikini clad teenagers and strolling couples, and summer IS ALMOST OVER, so don't miss it! Fingers crossed for a perfect summer day on Sunday! We are planning on debuting our DaveLovesDonna version of our newest song, already almost a week old (!), Kissing In The Street, the story of our first kiss on Bridge St. in Phoenixville in front of the tire store. Plus a new kick-ass version of Tonight, The Heartache's On Me, by my beloved Dixie Chicks. We took a little performing break to try to put our house back together after a recent restructuring and to work on our new CD. Work on the CD continues on in a super-unpleasant frustrating phase - birthing is not always easy and pleasant. But we are having big fun with Kissing In The Street. Dave did drum, bass and pedal-steel guitar tracks for it today. At least that song is clear about how it wants to sound. Not like Boom Boom We Fell In Love, which is the song we are struggling to finish recording.
As always, if you find yourself coming alone and would like some new friends to sit with, let us know!!!
Oh, MY, Oh, MY, BIG exciting week for us. Wednesday, Mill at Anselma Farmers' Market, Chester Springs, 3:30--6pm, Donna solo girlsongs, Just west of the intersection of Routes 401 and 113 on 401, http://anselmamill.org/
Thursday, East Goshen Farmers' Market, West Chester, PA, 3:30--6pm, Donna solo girlsongs, http://www.eastgoshenfarmersmarket.org/
Friday, The Ship Inn, Malvern/Exton, 7:30-10:30pm, DaveLovesDonna, http://www.eastgoshenfarmersmarket.org/
Saturday, The Inn at St. Peters Village, 2-5pm, DaveLovesDonna, theinnatsaintpeters.com/
I am so THANKFUL for farmers' markets! When we sing in clubs, we have a responsibility to play happy songs and help people put aside their cares for a time. We also sort of feel like the songs should be peppy. So many of the songs that I am writing, that keep coming to me out of the ether, are soft or pretty or sad or angry or quirky, and we just don't feel right playing them in a club. BUT, at farmers' markets, I feel like I have a lot of latitude to just be me and play MY music, the full range, and people listen and comment and get it, and it is a wonderful relief. I believe the farmers' market music scene is relatively new, and how totally convenient of it to come along just as I was becoming a song writer. I now take my keyboard with me everywhere Dave and I play, but my girl songs on the piano are soft and pretty, or dark dark blues, so I don't usually get to play them, unless someone requests one. But I can do them all at the farmers market! At Yellow Springs Farm, I got requested to do the piano songs twice!
One more incredibly fun farmers' market thing happened last week. My big big love has always been Broadway. At the Anselma Market, I had a group of little girls beg me to learn the song Let It Go, from Frozen. I have never seen Frozen, so the director of the market sent me the youtube link to the song, and my oh my this is a big and beautiful Broadway belting song, and it fills my whole being with joy to sing all two octaves of it. The message parallels my life in so very many ways. I think I have finally learned it (practically driving Dave-the-Saint completely mad in the process). The market has announced that I will be singing it on Wednesday, and I can't wait!
Friday, we will be returning to one of our most warm and fuzzy new places to sing--The Ship Inn. We sang there just two weeks ago, and the place filled up with dear friends, old and new, from far and near. Adding to that the regulars who truly love music and come to share and sing along, and it was as joyful as a night can get. Great food and drink, but even better camaraderie. If you can come, be sure to reserve a table near the music. Let us know if you find yourself coming alone and would like some new friends to sit with.
And Saturday, Saturday it gets even better, singing on the deck at The Inn at St. Peters, over the rocks and waterfalls, as beautiful as PA and summer in PA can be. We urge you to come and join in the fun, while it lasts! Grab on. Join in.
We are out west in and about Yellowstone Park for the next two weekends. Be back for July 4th weekend--July 3rd at Ludwigs and July 4th back at St. Peters!
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