Thursday, December 24, 2020

Christmas Eve 2020

Welcome to our world this night, Lord Jesus! Be with us in this time and in this difficult hour.

18 Now the birth of Jesus the [a]Messiah was as follows: when His mother Mary had been [b]betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be pregnant by the Holy Spirit. 19 And her husband Joseph, since he was a righteous man and did not want to disgrace her, planned to [c]send her away secretly. 20 But when he had thought this over, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for [d]the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a Son; and you shall name Him Jesus, for [e]He will save His people from their sins.” 22 Now all this [f]took place so that what was spoken by the Lord through [g]the prophet would be fulfilled: 23 “Behold, the virgin will [h]conceive and give birth to a Son, and they shall name Him [i]Immanuel,” which translated means, “God with us.” 24 And Joseph awoke from his sleep and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took Mary as his wife, 25 [j]but kept her a virgin until she gave birth to a Son; and he named Him Jesus.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

KHOI Morning Masterpieces 12/24 - Christmas Eve Day

Tomorrow morning 12/24 - join me on Christmas Eve day for my monthly turn in the host chair on Morning Masterpieces. Christmas and seasonal holiday classical favorites from Elgar, Barrios, Bach, Mozart, Liszt, and Schoenberg are in the playlist. Settle in from the cold and tune to 89.1FM (Central Iowa) tomorrow morning from 9AM - 10AM. If you are not near a radio or are out of the listening area, feel free to tune in via the web stream at:

Friday, December 11, 2020

Bandcamp - Official Store

Physical CDs available now - as well as MP3 downloads! CDBABY stopped their artist storefront service a while back. So I am now transferring all of my online merch to Bandcamp as my main store. They are the best storefront service I've found for working with indie musicians. All of my download MP3 albums and physical CDs are now available here. One-stop shopping!

Monday, August 24, 2020

Tracky-by-Track #7 -- Walking In The Rain was a poem I had written many years ago.

 This is about no one in particular; it is a mélange of people I’ve known over the years. I’ve always been fascinated about the idea of rain, and sadness and depression .. and yet the rain is a bringer of new life as well. Lots of imagery in this one. Musically I was going for a blues-pop feel like Jonny Lang or Clapton’s 1990s output. Come for the groove and imagery, stay for the long outro – where I let fly with some guitar. 😊

Saturday, August 22, 2020

Track-by-Track #6 - I Never Got To Say Goodbye

Track-by-Track #6 - I Never Got To Say Goodbye is a special song I’ve had in the files for years. Years ago, I had the honor of singing for the funeral of the mother of a friend of mine. It was a sad yet beautiful occasion. I wrote this song soon after; all those emotions come pouring out of you after an event like that. I kept the song to myself for years and never had an album or project to put it with.

Friday, August 21, 2020

Track-by-Track #5 Westbound


Track-by-Track #5 Westbound wasn’t something I had planned for the album. But as the project started to grow, I felt like it needed a bit of interlude or palette-cleanser (a musical sorbet, if you will). So, I wrote this from scratch and tracked it all in about 2 days.

And wouldn’t you know it, it’s one of the tracks people have told me they like the most. It just goes to show you. Sit back and enjoy a bit of blues guitar as we look off into the sunset of another highway drive.

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Track-by-Track #4 These Streets Have Changed


Track-by-Track #4 These Streets Have Changed is the other brand-new song on this collection. This is the one I’ve gotten the most positive response from so far...and I nearly left it off the album…

This is one of my favorite songs on the album, and one of my favorites of my own of all the songs I’ve ever written. After all the of the unrest of this year, I started reflecting this summer on some of my memories of when I was younger. I remember when I was very little, my brother and I would walk to school by ourselves. It was about a 6-block walk to school; and we thought nothing of it at all. But things have changed over the years, we are so distrustful of everyone and everything – seems like we have a lot of neighbors out there but not a lot of friends. And every day we continue to wonder where we went wrong.

“These streets have changed, from now and then. We used to be neighbors, now we’re not even friends.”

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Track-by-Track #3 Set The Rain On Fire

Track-by-Track #3 Set The Rain On Fire - is another song idea I’ve had for a while. But this time I did almost complete re-write so it’s essentially a brand-new song. I was thinking back – knowing what I know now what would I tell my 14-16-year-old self? I would tell myself to go after things and do not be afraid of something before you start – at the same time try to recognize when the opportunity is there. “Set the rain on fire, but don’t chase the wind”. I wanted a good blues number to rock out with and play some guitar – it’s ok to turn this one up a bit.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Track -by-Track #2 Roads We've Taken

 Track-by-Track #2 Road’s We’ve Taken – is a song I’ve had around for a while now and slightly re-wrote for this project.   My favorite school years were in elementary school; it seems like those were the best years before life got crazy.  I still have life-long friends from those days who I talk to regularly – this song is for all of them.  I had some wonderful teachers in those days as well – ones who shaped me greatly.   We don’t thank our teachers enough I think – I took the time out to thank them in the bridge.  

“We were all a little younger than…younger than our dreams”


Track-by-Track #1 Route 65

Track-by-Track #1. Route 65 – is a nice little instrumental ditty to open the album with. Dan Fogelberg often opened his albums with little instrumental pieces of various styles, and it was a great way to set the mood. I always really enjoyed that. Years ago, I often played for the Summer Farmer’s Market at the historic Niland Café and Hotel (off Highway 65 and old Lincoln Highway 30). It is was a great time and a wonderful little spot in small-town Iowa. Sit back and enjoy a nice summer evening with a bit of finger-pickin’ goodness.

Thursday, July 16, 2020

New Music - Roads We've Taken

*NEW MUSIC* I'm excited to introduce my new solo album entitled "Roads We've Taken".  (aka my 2020 quarantine project - file under "things I wasn't planning on doing this year").   I was going to just do a 4-song EP, and it turned into a 9-track full album.  That's the way it goes when you sudden have lots of free time at night and a little project studio in your basement.

There are a few new songs and several of these that I've had in the file for a long time, and never had a home for in other projects.  The album covers a wide range of stories; some are a look back at my childhood, and some are a look at today as we watch the world go by in these times. 
There's a little bit of variety here for everyone: some rock, some bluesy R&B, some piano, and some acoustic guitar textures. 

This is a *DIGITAL-ONLY* album release.  I will have CDs later this year.  "Road's We've Taken" is available now through all major digital music retailers. I am very happy to share this new music with you all.  Come join me on the front porch for some songs and stories on "Road's We've Taken" - available now

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

new interview - The Guitar Show with Ramon Goose

I just did a new interview for Ramon Goose's guitar show Youtube channel.  Ramon is a UK guitarist who has a really great video series on all things guitar - history, gear, players, etc.    He did an earlier one on Ritchie and I emailed him about my new book.  We got in touch and I did this interview spot for his show just yesterday.

Here it is - check out my new interview with Ramon Goose for The Guitar Show - we talk about my new Ritchie book and Ritchie's music, playing style, and more.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

new Podcast Interview - Deeper Digs In Rock / Ritchie Valens

*New Interview -- my new interview with Christian Swain for Pantheon Podcasts "Deeper Digs in Rock" is now online. In commemoration of February 1959, Christian and I discuss Ritchie Valens, his influence on rock history and rock guitar, and a few other topics. Check it out in its entirety here: