All kinds of exciting things are in the air! Here is a list of things I'm feeling grateful for at the moment:
  • Spring. This goes without saying for anyone living at this latitude. It seems like just yesterday that it was painful to be outside for just a minute. Now it's beautiful! 
  • Commissions. Yes, I have recently been approached to write my very first commissioned piece of music. I will have more details soon, but it's pretty cool to be paid to write something. Songwriting used to feel like a dirty little hobby that I kept to myself. Now it feels legitimate!
  • Students. Between working with kids at Mt Horeb High School last weekend with The Big Payback and my guitar students at Prairie Music and Arts, teaching has been very rewarding lately. It's something I truly do enjoy.
  • Finally, I'm thankful to YOU for voting me into the final round of the Madison Area Music Awards...
...which brings me to my "shameless plug" (is promoting oneself really supposed to be shameful? - I'm learning that it's the only way to get anywhere as a musician these days). I am a finalist in the Madison Area Music Awards (MAMAs) in two categories: Country/Bluegrass Performer and Brass Instrumentalist. 

I would LOVE you if you voted for me one more time. Just click your way over to the MAMAs official website, log in or make an account, and look for the aforementioned categories. If you voted in the first round, your registration fee is waived. If not, your $5 will go to help put an instrument in the hands of a kid who might not otherwise get one. Winning a MAMA award would mean a lot because it would add legitimacy to my name and help me to book venues that might not consider me otherwise. Your support is appreciated.

I'm also performing at the Madison Songwriters Guild showcase on Friday, May 1 at Tuvalu Coffeehouse. I'll be sharing the evening with another local songwriter, and there will also be a short open mic. Things get rolling at 7:30 pm.