Stories spoken and sung.

Categories:  Music, Public Performance

My dear friend and fellow ambitious Mobtown Moon’er, ellen cherry, is a terrific onstage storyteller, whether she’s speaking or singing. We shared the “bandstand” (read: back room behind the kitchen) at a wonderful house concert this past Saturday, our kickoff fundraising concert for the Floyd project. I’ll talk about that more later, but for now I just want to note how much fun it’s been to observe ellen’s work first-hand, and learn from her.

In the jazz world out of which I emerged, a little banter with the audience might be okay, but generally, talking isn’t what the audience is there for. They want to hear the music, hear interesting solos, get their “stories” directly from the groove and the melodies and harmonies.

I’ve come to realize that as I move further away from the straight ahead jazz world and into pop/rock songwriter venues, I need to practice my pre-song patter as much as I practice piano or voice technique. My lyrics tend to be a bit obscure and poetic. I think in my best songs, listeners can get an overall vibe or sense of what I’m singing about. But it’s probably best if I start explaining some of my inspirations and intentions. People seem to enjoy knowing where songs come from, enjoy seeing a glimpse of the connection between an individual’s life experiences or thought processes, and their manifestation in music.

I realize this might be a big “Duh” for most musicians and music fans! What can I tell you? Sometimes even obvious things require focused attention….