After leaving El Cosmico and meeting our friend JP "Jalepinio" Schwartz for a lovely kale salad lunch, we headed South East for our first show at The Boathouse in Terlingua. (Not without stopping at the local thrift store of course, and picking up 3 dresses and a scarf for $20!) The scenery was absolutely gorgeous in the desert. Lisa practiced her set in the back on her ukulele while I tapped along on my new bongo's and sang some harmonies. We arrived around sunset and Kay, our host, showed us to our RV - the digs for the night. Lisa and I took the top bunk, while Kacy and Nick grabbed the bottom.
The show started at 7pm and Lisa and I shared the evening, as well as a delicious burger and Maker's Mark shots. It's been a while since I've played solo, but was a good opportunity to test out three new tunes I've been working on.
After the show, we headed over to the Starlight, where I ran into Kris Wade, one of the bass players on my new record. Was great to see him and catch up, as well as meet his new wife, Ann! Sweet, sweet people with awesome dogs.
Today, we head to Lajitas and the Thirsty Goat Saloon to play and stay at a million dollar resort. Will be a contrast to our more rustic accommodations of the last few nights. More updates soon to come!
AND WE'RE BACK!!!
Katie's tour blog is officially back in action with Lisa, Nick, Kacy and Katie's West Texas Mini-tour! After driving all day, we arrived last night in Marfa for a relaxing Stay at El Cosmico - a funky vacation spot that features glamor camping options in vintage trailers and tents. Lisa and I split a tipi, with a propane fire pit in the center that kept us super cozy. (Once we hit Alpine there was about 2 inches of snow! Felt like I was back home in Massachusetts.) It was Kacy's birthday, so the 3 of them went out, leaving an exhausted Katie behind to practice some new tunes and read Keith Richard's autobiography by the fire. A nice quiet, and much needed night to myself before we start our string of shows.
Right now, I sit with a cup of complimentary coffee in the El Cosmico lounge catching up on some work and getting ready to meet Lisa and I's friend JP "Jalapenio" Shwartz. for lunch. Then we drive to Terlingua for our first show of the tour at The Boat House. This will be my first time in the boarder ghost town. Super stoked! Will be writing every day, so stay tuned....
We are almost almost done guys. The artwork is at 97% (and looks AWESOME. Thank You Phyllis!!!) The mixing is basically done - am having some friends listen and give final feedback. We have a penciled in date for Mastering on January 20th! Once this is done, we are off to the presses! I expect to have things in the mail for you by mid - late February!! This will be a few months before our official release date on April 1st.
In other exciting news, we shot the video for the first single "Underwear Model" last weekend. It went really well and was super fun. Should be premiering this at the end of January. Won't give away too many details, but let's just say I got about 15 dudes to dance in a certain kind of outfit... There was an accompanying photo shoot (got my hair and make up done for the first time ever!) Look for this at the beginning of next year.
As this year ends, I am again and again soo grateful to all of you for your support in helping to make this record. I am sooo excited to share it with you.
As the weather gets colder here in Austin, TX, the search for underwear models begins. We are starting to mix 7 out of the 12 songs on the record and working in the music video for the first single "Underwear Model." You guessed it, I need 15 - 20 men of all shapes, colors, personalities and persuasions to dance a kitchy dance in their underwear. The shoot is happening on Dec. 6th and 7th. Beer and food will be provided. Gimme a holler if you and/or your friends would like to be a part of the project!
Here's the FB event: https://www.facebook.com/events/739735909408546/#
Here are some scenes from "Crooked Crow" the songwriter retreat I went on in the Chianti Hot Springs on the boarder or Mexico. Had a magical time connecting and sharing with other amazingly talented singer songwriters. Walked away with 4 new songs. Woo hoo!! Big thanks to Johann Wagner for hosting and to everyone else for making this such a wonderful experience.
It's been a very busy month and a time of more change and transition. Am trying to get back into blogging more frequently, and hopeful that this will be possible once things settle down. In the meantime, here's a quick recap of the past month:
Spent the beginning of August couch surfing and ripping things out of, cleaning, and renovating Matilda (my new trailer home) in preparation for moving in upon return from tour. Got back to Western, MA on the 9th and hit the ground running with shows at The Dream Away Lodge and The Bookmill (super fun in-the-round show with Span of Sunshine and Chris Scanlon!) Finished recording final instrument tracks - tuba and cello - with Tommy, the producer from my first record. Had some laughs (as always) and lots of Indian food.
Week 2 back home provided some much needed down time and R and R before hitting the road with Lexi Weege. It was soo great to travel with someone! The two of us made quite a pair, sleeping in a variety of accommodations (random floors in Newport to Portland, ME mansions by the ocean.) We got some really great audience responses and I managed to sell out of all my CD's!
There was definitely some anxiety felt around returning back to Austin and an unfinished trailer - many unknowns. This week has flown by. Will share with you all about it next week!! XOXO Katie
August is the month of projects! been making some good progress on Matilda - she is officially stripped of the stuff I don't need and I am now spending the next several afternoons making her clean and sparkly before painting her "whisper violet." This is all the work I will be able to complete before my trip home where I will be recording cello, violin and tuba! After the uke and banjo session I have planned for today, all that should be left to record are my final vocal tracks. This is a big deal for "The Giantness" guys! Small steps making it past mountains.
Wanted to share some pics and video from my session last week recording vocal harmonies with dear friends Tyler Jordan (Check out his band The Gents !) and Lacie Taylor. We had a blast cracking jokes, as well as working really hard to belt out the harmonies it took us about 8 hours to prep before hand. Big Big Big thanks to my Kerrville pals for putting in so much hard work and sacrificing their Friday evenings and Sunday Mornings to be a part of this project (for free!)
My next entry should be from the green rolling hills somewhere in New England. Will be on tour through 3 states at the end of the month with Lexi Weege. Very excited!
It's been another month of great change, some difficult, but ultimately pushing me forward in a positive direction. In the challenge of becoming a self-sustaining musician, I am pleased and excited to share that July has been the most lucrative month for me from playing gigs EVER! I managed to scrape together enough income to equal what I had been making working in the coffee shop I was employed at when I first came to town. Really exciting, as I believe if you can do something once, you can do it again (and possibly even better the second time!) My new strategy is, when you think about it pretty obvious:
I WILL NO LONGER PLAY FOR FREE!!!!!
In trailer news....
Matilda has safely arrived at my friend Alex's house (the same friend I stayed with when I first came to town) where we will be trailer buddy's! Alex is working on fixing up his house so I get to help him and stay indefinitely. I am planning to do some renovating work tomorrow - ripping out the kitchen, water tank, shower basin. I will then paint her a lovely light lavender color, and finally get the A/C going. (Am realizing this has to happen, as I will literally be cooked without it. ) Excited to get these loose ends tied before returning home for more recording and mini-tour!
For now, I am once again living between homes and out of my beloved and loyally trusty car Trinity - the same place I was at last year this time, and yet miles and miles away....
I plunge deeper into this artists life, as I begin the slow, yet rewarding process of renovating what will one day be my new home. As a soon to be mega -touring musician, I need a place that I own (aka is rent free).
Her name is Matilda and she is a 1955 Streamline Trailer. 24' by 8' wide, she arrived in my driveway to a hail storm in July, announcing her triumph. Her body is in perfect shape, but as I peel away the pee smelling rugs and clean out the extra fluffy insulation, a floor that needs refurnishing is revealed. She will be more of a project to restore than I originally thought, but this in some ways actually excites me. It feels like I will be building my own house on wheels. As I was throwing some of the access, this guy rode by and gave me some books about restoring vintage trailers, saying he had just purchased one himself and is re-doing the floor. People have been coming out of the woodwork to offer help, advice and guidance. It's kind of like owning a dog - the subculture slowly emerging and gathering around me.
I've never really built anything with my hands before, and welcome the opportunity to gain this new practical skill (with guidance, of course.) It arrives symbiotically with the new shape my body is coming into. I have been swimming for an hour every day for the past two weeks and I feel physically stronger than I have ever felt in my life! I even ripped out some of the wood with my own bare hands, feeling a bit like super man.
For now, however, I am cleaning and daydreaming about designs. Thinking about how I can live more simply, and recalling my days living with no electricity or running water when I lived in Kenya. It really wasn't that bad.
I can see that Matilda is going to be a teacher to me in many ways...
It's been a busy few weeks with much to report!
Had my first taste of "real Texas" a few weeks ago at a gig in New Braunfels at a local bar in the middle of nowhere. Upon arrival, I could tell that this was gonna be a rough night - I walked in to Country music blaring and a cloud of cigarette smoke (yes, you could still smoke inside here). After a horrible glass of well whisky, I got up on stage to play to dead silence, recalling that scene in The Blues Brothers where they throw beer bottles at the band. (Too bad I didn't know the chords to rawhide!) After already deciding in my head that I would cut my set short, the bartender approached me with 40 bucks and asked me to stop. Was a win win for everybody!
Aside from finding myself at the worst possible venue choice outside of a metal dungeon or discotheque, it's been a pretty great few weeks for my music! The album is coming a long, with more than half of it being recorded, and several songs being complete (aside from mixing and mastering) It's been so cool watching these songs come to life. Like muscles being added to a skeleton, or getting your third sonogram.
Finally, I recently made my first large adult purchase of a new home - a 1959 Streamline Dutchess. I am so excited to fix her up and move in!
Oliver laying down some accordion and trumpet trax!