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As you  may gather from the title, the virtual open mic on Monday night is a Zoom meeting shared on Facebook. Hosted by Rob Case, with the more than able assistance from his wife, Lynda, the open mic replaces (for the time being) the live Poor David’s Pub open mic. It also benefits Poor David’s Pub and the Kerrville Folk Festival. The show below is from Monday, Aug. 24.

More about the open mic itself shortly, but first the reason for the title. While the Zoom meeting is going on one laptop, I have the Facebook video going on the other laptop so Cyndy can hear it, too. However, as you may or may not know, there is a short time delay between Zoom and Facebook. During the open mic a few weeks ago, I was talking to Cyndy and forgot about the delay. When the song ended on Facebook, I clapped on camera so they could see me clap. Sadly, he had already begun the next song.

But wait, there’s more… one of the performers said something to me – again, watching on Facebook. By the time I got my headphones on, unmuted the mic, and answered them, they also had begun their next song. Thankfully, they hadn’t started singing yet. Needless to say, I’m much more careful now.

Back to the open mic. There are always different and unique songwriters. Not a bad way to spend a Monday night. And if you would like to play, contact Lynda Case on messenger. The list from the show below is Rob Case, Allen Larson, Cat McGee, Jackie Sue Langford, Darwin, Dan Roark, John Mason, Don Wall, Baylis Laramore, Scott Thornton, Jenni Mansfield Peal, Rick Valente, and Harry Hewlett.

Check it out! Then tune in on Monday. Or join us and play.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

River That Flows is the first song I wrote about Cyndy, wife now, girlfriend then. Or rather, I was thinking about Cyndy when I wrote my half of the song. I was in college at NTSU (now UNT). Tim Duggins was my roommate. We met the year before at Richland Junior College (now Community College). On a Sunday, I think it was, we took our guitars and a 6-pack to the park.

We played the usual songs and practiced Sister Golden Hair by America. We had come to write a new song though. I don’t remember which one of us had the original idea. But after a lot of back and forth of ideas, moments of exhilaration and excitement, and when the 6-pack was gone, we had a song called River That Flows.

Southern Plains would be formed the next year. As I’ve said before, River That Flows was a staple of our set and it remains in my set list today. Joel Nichols and I added leads and flurries, but the song you hear now is the same song we wrote that day.

Unfortunately, Timothy James Duggins died of lung cancer a few years ago. I got in touch with him again

Tim Duggins on the left with his brother, Mike.

before he died. We were going to try to get together, but the last couple of years were tremendously hard on him. It was tough for him to get around.

Rest in Peace Tim!

 

 

________________________________________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

Granola bars

are for people

who want to be healthy,

but cannot escape the munchies.

_____________________________________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

There is a shop called Mountain Wookies in Colorado with a location in Canon City and another in Woodland Park. On the last couple of trips to Colorado, I went in search for a mountain wookie. Our friend, Sally, went on the search with me. The picture on the left or above, depending on your device, is of a cutout on the wall in the parking lot of the Mountain Wookies in Woodland Park. That wasn’t good enough.

There were shops with wolves, bears, deer, owls, dogs, and a pig or two. On the side of one mountain there were the Flintstones characters. But, alas, no mountain wookie. I had an idea for a picture I wanted to get that by design must have a mountain wookie.

Then, when Cameron and I drove up to Colorado the first weekend in August, the three of us were running errands and ran by Mountain Wookies. There in front of the shop on the sidewalk was a mountain wookie. Just go with that.

And here is the picture I wanted.

Mountain Wookie Eats Buc-ee for lunch!

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

I’ve been playing in the Monday night Zoom/Facebook open mic hosted by Rob Case and benefiting Poor David’s Pub and the Kerrville Folk Festival (PayPal@ David@poordavidspub.com if you would like to support those venues – 50% goes to each) since it began the first of June. So naturally, the guy that mows the yard next door changed his time to Monday evening. Mowing the yard itself is not the issue. It’s the leaf blower that sets the dogs off. Then they’re hyped up and barking about the time I’m trying to do my sound check.

And I keep wondering – it’s August, what the hell is he blowing around? I am convinced that they run the leaf blowers so they can charge more because it sounds like they’re working harder. It would help if they knew how to use them in the first place. They seem to think they can just blow the grass, etc. into oblivion. When actually, it ends up in the street or someone else’s yard.

Ever heard of a leaf catcher, dumbass? Or even better, mow the yard in such a way that you end up mulching it as you go. It would take less time so you might have to adjust your rate, but you could mow more yards in a day. Not to mention the environmental benefit of less gas leaf blowers polluting the air. Cutting down on the noise pollution is a plus for me. The whrrrr, silence, whrrrr, silence, and on and on and on, not only sets the dogs off, but raises my blood pressure at the same time. Not good when I’m getting ready for the open mic.

But I did get the sound check done, I did calm down (so did the dogs), and the open mic went well – all around, not just my part. Check it out next Monday at 7 – 10:30 p.m. on Facebook at Rob Case’s Open Mic page. You won’t be disappointed with music of varying styles to enjoy!

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

 

Picture of a bad picture of The Villager from the ’70s

[Read part I, part II and Nashville part I] [When we had to have the film developed, we never knew if the picture was blurry until we got the pictures back.]

The Villager is one of the first places we played in Nashville – and one of only two venues we played that are still open. The other is the Exit/Inn. Joel had been jamming with a Nashville musician named Cat Waldeman. So Southern Plains was a trio again, with Bruce Gibson (the original third member) still in Dallas.

One of many things that hasn’t changed in Nashville is that most of the time when you play it is open mics or showcases. Meaning you only get to play one to three songs. We had three core songs that we played – two originals and one cover. We began each set with those three, which meant those were often the three songs we played, period.

The three songs were Cold Wind Blows, River That Flows, and Can’t You See. Kind of rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it? It was a sort of mantra. If you read the previous posts, you know that the last recorded version of River That Flows that Joel and I recorded just came out as a single this week. Cold Wind Blows is also on the Southern Plains Revisited and will be released as a single.

We called Cold Wind Blows our “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes”. Only because of the style of the song. We were jamming one day and we had a poem by a local street poet named Mostly Williams. If you let him crash at your place for a few days, he paid you with poems. So we wrote the music together and I added a few lyrics to Mostly’s poem. It’s a long jam song so we primarily played it live. But I found this version recorded and produced by George Turner. I made a few edits and re-mastered it for the album. There are other songs on the album that he recorded.

At the Villager, we played at least one full set. Of course we were paid in beer. It’s a small place and the crowd wasn’t near what you would call large. They seemed to enjoy the music, nonetheless.

Next up…well, you’ll just have to wait…it’s a good story….

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

 

Good Morning (To Cyndy)

 

Good Morning – the Love of my Life,

Even though I miss you when you are gone,

I am excited – and anxious –

To see you again.

 

Because I know that

when you walk in the door,

you will be more beautiful

than when you left.

 

You have been more beautiful

each time I have seen you

for over thirty years

And more so with each passing day.

 

My one wish is simply

That you realize –

and rest in the comfort of the fact –

that I love you – literally – more than life itself.

 

Without you, my life would have little meaning.

You are such a large part of the good parts of who I am.

Have a great day!

Love you.

_____________________________________________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

The Jester and The Lady

 

Scared is a reason,

Paranoid a curse,

The two souls surviving,

jester and lady,

Through verse.

 

The jester is still hiding

What the lady has seen,

And cries in the darkness

At the mess as it’s been.

 

Line of confusion, illusion,

Harpsichord melody,

The reflection of the essence

of the things that should be.

 

The lines which evolve

from the songwriter’s pen,

are requested by the lady

again, yes, and again.

 

It is her own way of drifting,

as his is to write,

Echoes of laughter

Escort the dawn into light.

 

The lady’s words

put the truth where it stands,

While the moment is tossed

just to see where it lands.

________________________________________________________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

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