Greetings from Sombertown.
I wonder, often, if you’ve missed me as much as I’ve missed you. I doubt it, as this may not be possible.
Oh, do I have news – some of which you’ll be interested in, some of which will make you roll your eyes. Some of it is vague even by my standards. Some of it will make some of you feel somehow left out, though if you were a truly good person, it would make you happy for others. But you’re not, right? (Neither am I.) So it will.
Joe, Norman Blake and Mike Belitsky have started a new band. They’re called The New Mendicants, named I would imagine, for the Mendicant Friars, an order of Catholic monks who depend entirely upon charity for their livelihood. This is an excellent segue way into a later point, which involves a limited-edition 6 song CD EP I’d like you to buy. More on that in a minute. Anyway, Joe, Norman and Mike all live in Ontario these days, and they decided to start a band, rather than a construction company, a cabal, a bobsled team or anything else they could have started. This aforementioned 6-song EP was put together so Norman and Joe would have something to sell on their January/February 2013 tour of Australia. (Mike wasn’t actually in the band on its first day, when the touring plan was hatched and flights were purchased. He joined on the 7th day. Thus, he will not be on the Australian tour.) It contains 3 brand new songs, plus 2 instances of Joe and Norman covering themselves (how postmodern) and one INXS cover (The Australian government requires musicians wishing to tour Australia release an INXS cover before they will issue the necessary work visas. But luckily, they had some good songs.) Because I know how incredibly annoyed with me you would be, and realizing you all have my email address and perhaps even my phone number, I convinced the three ex-pats that we better make the EP available to those of you who can’t attend the Australian shows. So, for a limited time, you can order this CD EP here in our store. It will only be available for a short time, as I will basically print as many as you order, and that’s it. It will ship sometime around February 1, hopefully in time for Groundhog Day, which is somehow fitting. I will let you know how when I figure it out. It will also be available via all the usual digital outlets sometime around February 1. I will certainly keep you posted on the inevitable delays. You can hear one track from it here.
They are also recording a full length, working title The Book of Norman.
For those of you who live in Australia, here are the tour dates-
Sunday, January 20 – The Famous Spiegeltent, Sydney Festival
Tuesday, January 22 – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne
Wednesday, January 23 – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne
Thursday, January 24 – Blackbear Lodge, Brisbane
Friday, January 25 – The Famous Spiegeltent, Sydney Festival
Saturday, January 26 – The Idolise Spiegeltent, Parramatta
Sunday, January 27 – The Idolise Spiegeltent, Parramatta
Thursday, February 7 – The Grace Emily, Adelaide
Friday, February 8 – Perth International Arts Festival, Perth
For those of you who DON’T live in Australia and aren’t agoraphobic, I don’t have a lot to tell. No tour plans. You think it’s hard to get Joe out on the road? Multiply that by three and then add a couple of new bands in!
There is, as has been mentioned before, a new Scud Mountain Boys record, which will get released as soon as someone hands it to me. I’m not chasing them. I’ve never been one to chase people. You can chase them if you want, and let me know how it goes. I’ll be here. Waiting for that record.
As for the fabled Pernice Brothers record, it’s still fabled. I’m told it will see the light of day sometime in 2013. My guess is it will be sometime between the time the Patriots win the World Series and the Red Sox win the Stanley Cup. In case you missed it, The World Won’t End was release on vinyl. More on that here.
I don’t know what else to tell you. It’s been a kooky year. I’ve reached the age where I am positive that the minute I hit send, I will remember the one REALLY important thing I wanted to say. Someday, you’ll know what I mean.
Happy new year.