Joe2rd this Friday ~ “More of Less” video

I’ll be performing at Joe Squared (Powerplant) this Friday, April 20th at 10pm.  Swing on out for a pizza and some chill tunes and brews.

Here’s my solo-acoustic rendition of my original song “More of Less” about relentlessly picking yourself up and embracing the way of life that works for you:
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MV3yV1E94mQ?rel=0]

A bit about “Marjorie Jane”

I recently saw a tragic local story (linked here) about a man with dementia who pushed his wife out of his way because she was trying to stop him from wandering off by himself.  She fell and died of complications related to her injuries.

The story hit me in the gut, but inspired me to share a few words about my intent in writing and releasing my song that deals with dementia called “Marjorie Jane”.  It is intended as a reminder that life is full of extreme challenges and that it is up to extended families (and when the burden is too great, some aid from society) to help care for people in need in the safest and most compassionate way possible.

That is an extreme simplification of my thoughts on the matter (I’ll let the lyrics of the tune explore some of the gritty complexities), but sums up what I hope people can take away from an otherwise potentially upsetting topic.

Let us remember, too, that we are armed with a sense of humor to bring light and love in the good times to counterbalance the struggles.  I’ve decided that should I ever suffer from dementia, I look forward to someone playing me “Stairway to Heaven”, “Free Bird”, and “Bohemian Rhapsody”… so I can hear them for the first time, again…

Here’s my solo acoustic rendition of “Marjorie Jane”:
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SW2r77WWcgs?rel=0]

Album review – upcoming shows

Thanks for all the support this past weekend.  The 8×10 was a great gig to celebrate the release of “Within and Around”.  Check out a really nice review at  http://sunsetintherearview.com/album-garrett-anderson/

If you know any other music writers who may want to review the album, please suggest that they check it out.  I figure the more it is ‘out there’, the better the chances I’ll pick up a new listener or two.  Grassroots or no roots, ya’ll.

I’ve got a really interesting songwriter showcase show this Wednesday January 25th at Metro Gallery in Baltimore as one of “The Nine”.  Limited space so contact me to reserve your spot.

I’ll be back at Pure Wine Cafe on Thursday February 2nd and Shanty Grille on Saturday February 11th.  Hope to see some friendly faces!

As always, check out the Upcoming Shows page for additional info.

Reflections on The Bridge

Tonight a crew of my best friends, my wife, and my Dad will celebrate the music and community of The Bridge at their farewell show. It’s painful to see such an amazingly talented and driven band hang it up because they couldn’t earn a decent (and deserved) living for their families. As a musician that has always held a dayjob to pay the bills, I have the utmost respect for them giving it their all and sustaining for as long as they have. In the spirit of celebrating the good times instead of lamenting the loss, here are some of my favorite Bridge moments:

2/2/2008 – State Theater in Falls Church, VA – This was the show we bought the painting I used for “Within and Around”. I was really big into RAQ and was thrilled to catch Cris and Kenny guesting on the Allman Brother’s “whipping post”(on archive here) – wow! I was familiar with the Bridge from the music scene, but they absolutely rocked that night and won me over as a fan.

AllGood Music Festival – July 2008 – seeing Mike Gordon of Phish guest with the Bridge on a late night set.  That was plain epic!  We popped in their free-giveaway CD on the ride home and “Brother Don’t” hit me right in the gut and instantly became a personal favorite.

4/16/2010 – My buddy Greg and I had the pleasure of opening for the Bridge at PJ Kelly’s in West VA. It was a rare road-gig for me so everything had that fun surreal vibe of an utterly foreign experience. Honestly, I was a bit starstruck and shy around the members of The Bridge as we were loading in and preparing for the gig. We had some pleasant hanging, though, and everyone was really nice and chill. Once it was time for us to hit the stage the rest of the night flew by too fast. After our set, Kenny told me he enjoyed my song “Drop these Blues” – that was really special. They tore it up and had the room rocking. I’ll remember that night fondly.

7/10/2011 – My entire family packed up an amazing picnic and met up with friends for their show at Ladew Gardens. This was my daughter Emma’s first concert – a beautiful experience. The band was playing acoustic which complimented the chill gorgeous day and venue. A record crowd was in attendance and, as at every Baltimore-area Bridge show, there were plenty of delightful run-ins with other friends and musicians.

Funny enough, one of my favorite Bridge memories is a show I missed. I think it was March of 2009. I was living in College Park at the time and The Bridge were playing a weekly residency at the Santa Fe CafĂ©. I made plans to go see them after work but when I got back to our apartment, Lauren told me that she thought she might be pregnant. So, we decided to go out to dinner to chat and celebrate the possibility. We swung by a CVS on the way home, took the test that night, and sure enough, started planning and looking forward to our little family. I’m not sorry I missed that one, guys – hah!

Thanks for all the great times!

NEW Single “Texas Honeysuckle”

I’m wrapping up a home-studio solo album due out in November.  Here’s the first single.  I hope you enjoy and help spread the word!  Peace.  (A video with lyrics is posted on the “a video” page).

[bandcamp track=526627703 bgcol=FFFFFF linkcol=4285BB size=venti]

Shanty reflections

Whewie!  Saturday night was one of those gigs – the kind where chaos somehow swirls into delightfully imperfect moments of musical bliss and it is crystal clear, though impossible to aptly put into words, why we play live music… There were babies bouncing along to the tunes, over-due catching up with friends, attentive and supportive locals, and of course, good vibrations.

The infusion of Josh on the electric 5 string fiddle for a good portion of the night kept me on my toes and in the moment.  We had fun on DMB’s “Dancing Nancies”, “The Stone”, and “Pig” and John Mayer’s “Why Georgia”, slipping in my originals “Mountain Trail”, “Miner’s Lament”, and “Amens Hallelujahs”.

Adding Sander on bass for a few trio jams (The Rolling Stone’s “Can’t always get what you want” and “Sympathy for the Devil”, our own “Bodies”, “Holding On”, and “Slug” ) was great – and I couldn’t help but announce to everyone that it was the first time Sander and Josh had ever jammed, drawing attention to a) their stellar musicianship and b) one of those “music as a universal language” reminders.

Sander and I also had some neat duo versions of “Bohemian”, “Soft Spoken Prophet”, “Drop these Blues”, “Tea with Einstein”, and Bill Wither’s “Sweet Wanomi”.

I used my brief solo interludes to try a few new covers, including Harry Chapin’s “Circle” (for my in-laws anniversary!) , My Morning Jacket’s “Wonderful” (with Lauren singing harmonies), Umphreys McGee’s “Front Porch”, and The Bridge’s “Bury my Bones in Baltimore” (with Raven’s lyrics in verse 2 a la The Bridge at Ladew Gardens on 7/10/11).

There was a nice group of folks who stuck around ’till the very end, asking for more – we thought a lively version of “Sympathy for the Devil” would be a great way to wrap up the night.  After that, we got chatting and it turned out our song choice was ironic because they all met through their home worship / bible study type group (One gentleman said “we don’t have any sympathy for the devil” to which a lady graciously followed up “but we loved your rendition”).  I got a chuckle from that and decided it’d be far more appropriate to end with “One Day” by Matisyahu, during which I literally got goosebumps from knowing how deeply the words were striking everyone in ear-shot.

Thanks again to the good folks at Shanty for having us, and especially to all our friends and family in attendance.  We’ll do our best to build on the great positive momentum from this gig.  ‘Till next time…