Lovely Carla at Bucktown Garden Walk!

We played a set at the Bucktown Tree and Garden Walk yesterday afternoon. Storm clouds threatened all weekend, but it was all blue skies. It was the third year in a row we’ve played this little festival and it was the best and most rewarding so far. Thanks to CAUDOG Records and Club Lucky!

Lots of people came out to walk the neighborhood, and to check out local gardens. Lots of folks came out to enjoy the great food at Club Lucky. Lots of folks came out to listen to music too. Seems it takes a little time to seep into the consciousness, and it helps if you have great weather. This little gem of a event has found it’s place.

Our band was ready for it. We were very well-rehearsed. A big sound. It was the first show with Ian Ogden on bass, and Chuck Wasserburg brought 2 electric guitars – the Danelectro and the Gibson (he calls it the slab!), and Randy Farr was on percussion, Steve Rutstein played his brand new Gretsch drum kit for the first time – gorgeous!

The Lovely Carla was still experiencing “vertigo,” a pretty heavy case of dizziness, but she was able to hold it all together by force of will and charisma. A very satisfying show. The band really brought it. Lots of praise from many quarters afterwards. Strangers came up to tell us they loved our set. New fans. So yes, blue skies, great food, excellent sound, tight set, new fans – what more can you ask for? – Jammer

Photo by Eric Dinse

Serpent, Hawk & CherYesterday Jammer and I picked up a copy of “The Serpent’s Egg” at Squeezebox, our favorite little 2nd hand book/cd shop in Evanston. I was turned on to Dead Can Dance in NY in the late 90’s while doing a photo shoot with fashion photographer Jeff Licata. This morning I am alone with the music. (Jammer is house-sitting, it’s 4th of July week-end and we’ll get together later to hang with his doggie pal Buster, have a Joy Yee Noodle jamboree and to listen to our latest project “The Shadow of the Marigold.” Is it finally ready to be mastered?).

I have also been forced to take it easy, I have a case of vertigo, my mind is a kaleidoscope, it tilts and spins and, I drift about… watching the leaves sway in the summer wind outside the window. I think about my father. How he would sit in silence watching the world around him, I think about the lyrics in Black, Black Wings: “there was just no gettin inside of that, there was just no getting outside of that.”

A line from Helen Macdonald’s book “H is for Hawk” has been resonating over the past few days in this fragmented head of mine, “The unspoken atempt to hold onto something that has already flown away.” Yes. The awareness of the circles of change, going round and round over time, bouncing and crashing into one another, floating away.

I love nostalgia, I so believe the stories keep us engaged and grounded. While enjoying “The Serpent’s Egg,” I read an article by Kate Christensen about the relationship she shared with her mother as a child in the 70s. Her mother, a strong women; divorced, struggling to take care of her children while getting her PH D. Her mother had very little time to spare, although they always got together on Friday nights to relax and watch the Sony & Cher show. They would admire Cher’s style, her strength, her wit, and her ability to rise up from a rough childhood to become a successful and creative woman. Cher’s career and life like many, has gone through volatile ups and downs, but still, she carries on. Kate leaves us with gratitude for Cher’s story. To have the hope and courage to keep on going. A wonderful reminder – Hope and Courage, and Gratitude, for this life, all that it holds. The successes. The failures. The energy of spirit that connects us all, to all. – Carla

Photo of Cher by Bill Clough