Add some salt to Valentines Day sweetness  

I'm not known for my renditions of traditional sea shanties and songs. In fact, some may doubt that I even know any. Some time ago I laid down some tracks for the classic traditional shanty Bound for the Rio Grande. Then I forgot about them until a couple of weeks ago. I found that they weren't the worst I'd ever recorded. So I've mixed, mastered, and launched this new recording down the ways.

According to my English shantymate Peter, this is a traditional windlass and capstan shanty that was one of the…

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Especially for Mermaids 

You may or may not remember from high school physics class that water is an amazing conductor of sound. So good, in fact, that sounds which are quite ordinary and unobtrusive on land can be highly disturbing, if not downright painful for sea creatures.

Such is quite definitely the case with Mermaids. Jangly things that we land creatures like for rhythms and sparkle can actually cross the pain threshold for them — bits such as tambourines, bells, triangles, cymbals and the like. I didn't know that when I…

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Join me on Facebook Live - Sundays thru August 

I've been invited to perform at the Teign Shanty Festival in the UK in late September. I'm hosting a series of mini-concerts on Facebook Live, to get myself out of studio mode and into live mode.

Sessions will be short: 2-3 songs max. I'll be premiering some brand new songs, never before performed. I'll post an Event on my Facebook page ahead of each session. Here's the plan:

JULY
  • 07 - OLD & NEW NIGHT: Featuring some old old, new old, and brand new never before performed sea songs.

  • 14 - MANDOLIN

Good St. Patrick - how about a repeat performance? 

Legend tells us that it was Saint Patrick who drove the snakes from the Emerald Isle. Pundits have pontificated that snakes in the St. Paddy legend represent Evil. Fine and dandy - let's go with that. Now let's talk about the big island where I was born and grew up.

It's not really an island in the geographical sense. But it certainly is in the minds of a significant portion of the populace. In fact, in the minds of most of the members of a certain elephantine political party, it's a walled island - or…

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Drowning in insipid Christmas music? Grab this! 

'Tis the Season. By mid-December every year (if not sooner) you're no doubt thoroughly sick of hearing the same old same old Christmas songs incessantly flung at your head everywhere you go. Here's salty relief from all that insipid holiday musical drivel!

Salty Sailor Carols

What if those old carols had been composed by salty old sea dogs in days of yore? This medley re-imagines 6 classic Christmas carols as old-time sailors might have sung them (except that these are probably less rude!)

For…

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Harwich Shanty Festival 2018 Dates 

Once again I and the venerable gents of the Men Overboard maritime folk trio will be heading to Harwich, Essex, England to perform my New Old Sea Songs (and a few oldies too) at the 2018 Harwich International Sea Shanty Festival. This year's festival takes place October 5-8. We'd love to see you at any of the scheduled Men Overboard shows:

Friday (05 Oct.)
13:00  Ha’penny Pier 45-50 min.
16:00 Crown Post 2-3 songs, part of a multi-artist event

Saturday (06 Oct.)
11:15 Shanty Train - advance tickets required

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Introducing the Empress - or - Going for Baroque 

Not long ago I acquired a guitar to to use for festivals and other live concerts (read the saga here).

For me the downside of the guitar was its looks - but that's the last thing I care about if other factors like tone, responsiveness, playability and price are all there... as was definitely the case with this one.

The quilted maple top seemed just a bit ostentatious to me. It reminded me of some Baroque furniture I've seen in The Hermitage. Consequently, I whimsically named it "The Empress Katherine II"…

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Baltic Shanty Festival Show Schedule 

Just got my schedule from the festival directors of the Baltic Shanty Festival coming up this weekend: 29 June - 2 July. So I herewith let the cat out of the bag.

Friday 29 June:
13:30 ÅSS Paviljongen http://www.paviljongen.ax/
16:00 Park in Town
20:00 Albin

Saturday 30 June:
12:00 Inner Yard in Town
14:00 Restaurang Nautical  http://www.nautical.ax/
14:30 s/v Albanus (ship)
15:00 Mayor's Reception Gustaf Eriksson villan  (1 short song)
19:30 Restaurang Nautical again, then as soon as I can get there...

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Down Down Down - A Phrophetable Sea Song 

I was planning on releasing this song later this year. I think the production could have used a little more work. But events along the southern border of my native country have caused me to push it up and toss it out, blemishes and all.

For quite some time I have marveled at the deafening silence emanating from the mainstream religious element in my native U.S.A. - a country that's always been big on organized religion. As a kid being fed nice white protestant goop, my favorite Bible stories were those…

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One of my sadder gigs 

"Nobody's right when everybody's wrong" - Stephen Stills, "For What It's Worth" (1966)

"They'll storm the gates of Hell itself, to the tune of a single drum" - Gordon Lightfoot, "Protocol" (1976)

"There's a power av virtue in keepin' things separate" - Long Jack (Captains Courageous by Rudyard Kipling)

There's a lot to be said for the idea of musicians keeping focused on music and not mucking about with politics. But sometimes the political class mucks things up so badly for so many that you simply can't…

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