Hey there sports fans,
I'm playing two acoustic sets at the Blind Beggar from 7 - 8:15 on Saturday, November 25th. Tickets are $10 and you can buy them on the Blind Beggar's website or from me (email email@example.com) for the personal touch. Buying in advance will save you $5 per ticket!
I'm premiering a couple of new songs, which is a scary thing for anyone with a guitar, and I hope you like them as much as I do. They have a tune and EVERYTHING.
Look for some spring dates to come, as the team (me) that brought you the Heroes and Heathens tour is putting their heads together to hatch a bit of a circuit for when the snow melts.
It's been three years and six months.
I did not plan to take a hiatus for over a third of a decade - or perhaps I did; perhaps a deep, dark part of my soul needed the break - but it happened. A lot has transpired since my last check-in and some of the music I've made deserves to make it into the canon of great CFordery that this website has come to represent.
Most of my creative juices have, sadly, gone to other projects during this time. My wife and I completed a two-year posting in South Korea full of distracting travel. We've both gone back to school and that has eaten up much of my energy. We surprisingly welcomed a cat into our family.
To sum up in a few words (that is to say, to keep the longwinded demon of my ego from scoring too many points this chapter), I'm rediscovering the creative side of things and this post serves as a recommitment to myself and to all those interested in my work. I'm updating and streamlining the site to showcase a few different sides of my creative life and hopefully to give a better sense of what I've been up to. Feel free to explore as you will.
A heartfelt thanks must be issued to everyone who's continued to come back to listen, read, or look. Keep doing that.
It's my favorite thing.
Day 1 wrap-up:
I began the tour at the Railway Club in the back stage, where we filled the whole room. It was a sell-out kind of vibe, just a very memorable evening. I was lucky to have Island standout Cameron Gunn open for me, and he laid down some great blues licks and politically charged originals to warm up the crowd. We had to run our own sound in the back, so fans were treated to a few embarrassing squeaks of feedback, but ultimately I'd like to think we sounded pretty good! Many thanks to everyone who came out, and it was a great feeling to be sent off on the tour by so many well-wishers.
Cath had an appointment to get to in the morning, and we rushed out of the house early so that I could drop her off. In my haste, I forgot about half of the things I had intended to bring. No laptop, no phone charger, no cookies baked especially for me by my loving wife, and perhaps most egregiously, NO CHANGE OF CLOTHES!! It's a good thing at least that I threw the guitar along.
I hit the ferry at Horseshoe Bay and sailed to Nanaimo. Getting into town a little early, I thought I'd take in a hike and headed up towards Nanoose Bay. I strolled around the beaches there and then headed back into town for some dinner - a friend recommended Gina's for Mexican, which turned out to be bang-on! Hot sauces and salsa flowed freely.
I got to the Vault Café a little early and met the owners. If you go to Nanaimo, stop in at the Vault - it's one of the most eclectic rooms I've ever been to. Vintage decor, couches, board games, open kitchen, good food and drinks, and good company. I asked the manager what I could do around town before the show and he gave me one of the most unique recommendations I've ever received: "why don't you challenge someone to a game of chess?"
The show was a lot of fun, the crowd was into it and the banter flew freely till midnight. I was lucky enough to have a friend of a friend of a friend to stay with - this tour is becoming one of my first real experiences with the generosity of strangers, and gosh is it ever a powerful force. I can't say enough good things about Nanaimo! It was a day I'll always remember.
Day 3 - no show today, so I headed down to Victoria to meet up with some old friends. I hadn't seen much of Victoria in my life, but what I had seen was the Legislature and the tourist-swarmed bay. Spending time in the actual city itself was a pleasant surprise. It reminded me of visiting Portland and Bellingham - a really earthy, West-Coast vibe pervades the streets. It was the first warm sunny day I've seen this year, and so we sat outside and even worked in the garden for a little while before heading downtown for the evening. We ended the evening at a late-night joint called Logan's Pub, perhaps most notable for its use of a trough in the men's room and its universally tattooed clientele. A thoroughly enjoyable time was had by all.
Day 4 brings me to Port Alberni and Char's Landing, but as I write this I'm in Duncan grabbing a coffee. The plan is to do a hike somewhere along the drive, and I've been told Englishman Falls is worth a stop. I'll be back in Vancouver in a couple days before heading out to Squamish, and I'll thankfully be able to grab what I forgot to pack - and this time I think I'll remember those extra clothes.
Hey kids - quick update for you. The booking team (me) and management (me) are working hard to get the tour fully up-and-running. We now have 13 confirmed dates (stay tuned for BC announcements!) and we are ramping up for a full-on PR onslaught (reports of our PR team have been greatly exaggerated).
To that end, I was on the radio a coupla nights ago (thanks to Folk Oasis for having me on!) and plugged the tour pretty hard. I hope you had a chance to listen to it, but if you didn't, here's the damage!
As a warning, some of the audio during the songs 'clips' (gets buzzy and loud) due to the radio-to-mp3 conversion. It sounded great live, or so my wife tells me.
Grab your things, I've come to take you home
The tour is alive!! We've got five Alberta shows to announce here in CFordnation:
April 17th - Mikey's Juke Joint, Calgary, AB
April 19th - The Velvet Olive, Red Deer, AB
April 21st - Naked Cybercafe, Edmonton, AB
For Auld Lang Syne, m'dears! Cath and I just got back from a heck of a resort in Blaine, Washington, and now it's back to life as normal. Our schedule of wake at noon, watch TV, eat cookies, nap, play video games and guitar, eat meals consisting of primarily bread and cheese, sleep, repeat, is now over. Now begins a busy few months of preparing for the Heroes and Heathens tour:
Thanks to everyone who came out on Thursday. Thanks to my friends, Marc & Dice and LOVECoast, who put on magnificent shows of their own. Thanks to the Media Club for hosting such an amazing event. Thanks to my wife, who dragged herself through sleepless snowy Pennsylvania and back again only to get up onstage with me through her illness. Thanks to those who drove a long way just to share the night with us. Thanks to everyone. It was everything I could have hoped for it to be.
As a thank-you, I've got some new toys for you to play with. I've been working with a couple of friends on some videos for those of you who haven't been able to make it to shows. The first is (of course) the one above, shot with longtime CFord co-conspirator Skot Nelson, and the good news is that there's more coming. There's two more songs that we shot during that session, and I should have those up for you over the next few weeks. More good news after the break!
Fans, family, and friends,
I have spent the last few days in Pennsylvania with my family supporting my mother and grandmother. My grandfather Donald Heil passed away this week just days after his 85th birthday. The service will be on Monday, and Catherine and I will return to Canada on Tuesday.
To those of you who are looking forward to Thursday's show at the Media Club, I want to reassure you that the show will go on. I'll be there from start to finish, and we have an amazing night of music for you.
I spent all my spare time this week - that is, when I wasn't in the hospital or sleeping (and a lot of time that I should have been sleeping) - recording a song that represents what Pop-pop meant to me. After the service is over I'll try to get that up on the site to stream so that you all can hear it.
My grandfather was a great man, who provided his family with a beautiful life, and saw not only his daughters but all of his grandchildren achieve higher education and find love and prosperity. He got to know two great-grandchildren and was the head of his household.
And I am *very* excited about it!!
More soon, including where to get tickets, album art, and a Facebook event. BRACE YOURSELVES!
New song: Palimpsest
This is probably my favorite song that I've written so far - it's fun to play on the acoustic because the picking pattern requires a lot of concentration; the lyrics are confessional and honest; the title is confusing; the arrangement is self-indulgent and features a harpsichord, banjo, and a horn section. More about the song after the break.