Category: Music


916 Acklen Ave., in Nashville

This was the house in Nashville where we lived on the second floor. The room with the three windows upstairs was my room. The front door of our apartment is on the far right side of the porch. Our other two roommates were Sonja and Debbie. (I’m not so sure about Debbie, but it’s close.)

Sonja was a pretty cool person. Debbie was a nice person, but she was a clean freak. We used to say she’d empty the ashtray after you simply tapped your cigarette on it. That’s an exaggeration, but not by much.

Building a beer can mountain is no easy task. First you have to drink a lot of beer – so it doesn’t happen overnight. Then you have to find a good corner of the room in which to build it. Joel, Sonja, and I – with a little help from our friends – did both. I don’t know how many cans high it was, or how many total cans, but it almost reached the ceiling. We were rather proud of it. People would come over to see it. It was rather impressive.

Joel, Sonja, and I were gone for the good part of a Saturday. When we arrived back home, Debbie had gotten rid of the can mountain. We were understandably pissed off. And we let her know in no uncertain terms. She wasn’t our roommate for too much longer after that. The can mountain wasn’t the only incident and we found out she was irritating as well.

___________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

(Read the first part of the Southern Plains story here. Along with what the cover of the album was supposed to be like if the distributors had let me use the cover I wanted.)

The next time Joel, Bruce, and I got together – with guitars and beer – we each played songs we’d written. We enjoyed each other’s songs, re-playing some so the other two could harmonize. We were excited about what we were hearing. I hadn’t had anyone singing along with me on my songs and I was blown away.

Joel returned to school in Nashville, Tennessee at Scarritt College, which is now the Scarritt Bennett Center. He came back to Dallas over the summer and we played gigs before and after Joel’s summer courses in Nashville, including a show at a party in Slidell, Lousiana. Joel then decided, after three and a half years, that he would forego returning to school to play gigs. I paused my own schooling to move to Nashville with Joel so he would finish his last semester (and play gigs) and live with his other two roommates on the second floor of an old house.

The painting pictured above is a painting of a picture of mine and Joel’s guitars crossed. More to come!

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

Since live shows are not possible at the moment, the single release party for River That Flows will be the Poor David’s Pub/Kerrville Folk Festival open mic hosted by Rob Case, Monday night, August 10, on Facebook from 7 – 10:30 p.m. I will play about 8:15 p.m. The open mic will be on the Rob Case Open Mic Page. I will be sharing the show on my Facebook pages, personal and music.

River That Flows is the first single from the coming album, Southern Plains Revisited. It is a reissue of the last recording Joel Nichols and I did as Southern Plains before he died in 1999, plus a couple of songs I recorded but didn’t use on my Chasing After Wind Cd.

Tomorrow’s post will tell the story of Southern Plains and the last recording in the 90’s.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

My wife, Cyndy, came home from volunteering at the local market. She looked at me and said, “You have to write a song called Goat Yoga and a Stolen Kubota.” I said, “let’s do it!,” because it was weird enough for me. She told me the story, I whipped out my poetic license and went to work. After days of letting the song germinate in my brain, it finally blossomed into a complete song. Enjoy the first song Cyndy and I have ever written together.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

Good question, thank you for asking. More waiting, I’m afraid. Waiting for the single to be released. Waiting for the time when live music becomes common again. I’m in no hurry if health is at issue.

The reason I am in no hurry is the positive news. The single will be released. I can still play live, as it were. I played my first livestream last Friday that went well until Conner’s camera died. We did get a chance to record a few videos. Waiting does not imply sitting around doing nothing. I have to admit though, that I had a few weeks of not being able to finish a thought at the beginning of this madness.

To answer the question however, quite a bit lies ahead. I’ll be releasing a video this weekend. There will be livestreams to come starting next week – I’m working on the schedule and material now. I play in the Poor David’s Pub Virtual Open Mic hosted by Rob Case every Monday. Check it out at 7 p.m. CT.

More singles will be released, but not on my schedule. The release of the Southern Plains Revisited album has also been moved back along with everything else. Hopefully by September.

So keep an eye out for my new video this weekend. And my next livestream coming very shortly.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

I will be playing for about half an hour at 6 p.m. (CT) this evening (6/19). It’s last minute notice, but my son, Conner, had to finish setting up his new computer and connecting everything. We ran a quick test last night and everything seems to be set.

I’ll be streaming on the Refrigerator Records Facebook page, as well as my personal and music pages. I’ll begin with River That Flows, the song I’ve been trying to release as a single from the upcoming cd, Southern Plains Revisited (with Joel Nichols). But, thanks to Covid-19, the release has been delayed.

Included in the show will be a John Prine song – my first chance to publicly pay tribute after his passing. And a song I wrote after the shooting at the peaceful Black Lives Matter protest in Dallas in 2016.

Tune in at 6 and listen to some songs. It should be a good time.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

For some reason which I not only do not know, but have no control over, River That Flows – the first single from Southern Plains Revisited – will be released on a future date. Please look for it and stay tuned.

While you’re here, a poem.

Moments

 

Transcending forests,

hovering above trees,

Romantic concepts,

Bringing men to their knees.

 

It is a hint of loneliness

with a dash of hope,

There is always promise

Where there is water and soap.

 

It is possible to trip

on a man’s heartstrings,

reach into his mind,

and repossess the memories

or help the mess unwind.

 

It could very well be a blessing,

or hinge upon a curse,

If he chooses to depend on miracles,

or simply expects the worse.

 

It comes to the magic of the moment

and how the magic is spent,

Between the meaning as it has been received,

and the meaning as it is meant.

 

Confusion enters the arena,

Yet joy wins out over all:

When everyone just goes for joy

decreasing the chances of a fall.

 

And when you see the magic

of the moment,

You realize you have it all.

_________________________________________________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

So I left Colorado on Friday morning – a beautiful day. The traffic was still rather light, but had picked up a little each day. It was a nice day for a drive. A damn long drive, but there you are. The weather warmed up, the air was clear, and the clouds were seemingly drifting through space and time. 

Radio reception cut out on the drive through New Mexico. I listened to the latest mix Conner sent me of the songs for the LA Session cd to be released later this year on Refrigerator Records. The songs sounded so good I was tempted to release it earlier, but everything in its own time. It is good traveling music.

The timing worked out perfect. Radio reception kicked back in when I finished listening to the mixes. A couple of hours later I was past Amarillo. Weather warnings began to interrupt the radio show. Rain, ping pong ball size hail, and sixty mile an hour winds were attacking the panhandle behind me. I was appreciating the fact that I had dodged that particular bullet. 

I appreciated that fact all the way to Hwy 380. The wind had picked up considerably by that time. Then I hit a little light rain. No big deal. I called Cameron to see if he was at his apartment in Denton. I was going to stop off, say hi, and use the bathroom. But soon after we hung up, the bottom dropped out. God’s way of telling me he didn’t appreciate my over confidence. 

On 35, visibility was reduced to having to turn on the flashers to warn those behind us. I worried about those whose common sense seemed lacking. I had to go around two accidents, the first of which I was almost in. But I arrived home with no incident in which I was involved.

I’ve been wearing a mask and social distancing the whole time. On one level of my conscience I’m getting used to it. On another level, I’m kinda tired of the whole damn thing. I would like to have a beer at the bar and then finish my show when the break is over.

In my dream last night, the trip – as well as events of the past few months – invaded that same conscience. There is a lot of jumbled parts that made an impression, but I don’t remember what happened. However, one scene struck me vividly. 

I was at a gathering of some sort. It was obviously pre(or post)- Covid 19. While the groups were away from each other, it was closer than six feet. I was walking through the crowd, saying hello to what seemed like everyone. I wasn’t shaking hands, but I was patting everyone on the shoulder. I got halfway through the crowd when I became horrified at what I was doing. Yet I couldn’t stop. Then I suddenly woke up with a shake.

I’d rather not have that dream again, if it’s all the same.

_____________________________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

Since the first single from Southern Plains Revisited will be released May 29 on Refrigerator Records (whether I play the show at World’s End Brewing or not), I thought I would fill you in on the beginning of Southern Plains. Cyndy and I have been married for twenty-eight years. We’ve been in love, as we say, since right after high school – where we were friends.

Our first date was during her senior year. I had graduated the year before. We went to see Rusty Weir at the Lone Star Opry House on Industrial in Dallas and had a blast, drinking – you guessed it – Lone Star Beer. Industrial is called Riverfront now. We had a couple of dates after that.

Then, in early ’76, we had a disaster of a double date. We had an okay time together. But the date sucked. We ended up in an apartment lying on the floor next to a couple who were getting excited by the movie they were playing of people doing things we had no intention of doing at the time. But the other couple seemed to be moving in that direction. Neither of us remember exactly how the date ended, but mercifully it ended.

Cyndy called me before Super Bowl Sunday and invited me to a party at a friend’s apartment to watch the game. There were Cyndy, myself, and Joel Nichols at Bruce and Charlotte Gibson’s apartment. We spent more time talking about music than watching the game. By the time the party was over, Joel, Bruce, and I agreed to meet again with guitars and beer to see what transpired.

Stay tuned!

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

I had planned on publishing a post yesterday. But with social distancing and so forth on the road, There just wasn’t a convenient time to whip out the laptop. I’m getting used to the WordPress app on my phone – I just hadn’t taken the time to check it out. Which is odd considering that time is the one thing I have too much of.

With states taking steps to open up, Sally and I didn’t know what to expect in the way of traffic on the way to Colorado. Of course Dallas and Denton traffic was increasing. Not too much traffic through west Texas, but then, why would there be? The rest areas had very few people, most of whom were either wearing masks or kept their distance. When we stopped for gas, the employees were wearing masks as were most of the customers. Most, but not all, were social distancing.

From Trinidad, Colorado north through Colorado Springs the traffic kept picking up. Enough so that we were caught in bumper to bumper traffic for a time in Manitou Springs. People are still being sensible here for the most part, but there are always those people. Some people were getting back to work in Colorado Springs which caused quite a bit of the traffic.

As for me and mine, except for the masks and social distancing, with the accompanying fear and paranoia, basic life has not changed much. Thankfully, Cyndy is still working and I have writing projects. Granted I’m not playing any live shows at the moment. But I can record videos, do some streaming, and work on new songs. My point is that we have always washed our hands. We have always been careful of door handles and so forth. And we keep a distance from people on a regular basis.

Be that as it may, we’ll see what unfolds. I don’t know if I will get to play what would have been the last show on my tour the end of the month. I’m going home the end of the week. Cyndy and I will come back up here the last week of the month for Cyndy’s vacation and what would have been my shows. We may not be doing much.

Governor Polis of Colorado has said that he would make a decision on restaurants on the 25th. The show at World’s End Brewing in Canon City  is scheduled for the 29th. Since I can set up back in a corner alcove, easily leaving 6-9 feet, I would really like to play the show. The customers are mostly local and probably haven’t left.

But after that, who knows? I have a few shows booked for July that I hope to play. But I’m getting recordings ready to release, writing new songs and other things. I’m not in that much of a hurry if it keeps me from being sick.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

 

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