Taking a little over 400 mile round trip working excursion east to Kennewick, WA., to help the Hughes Physical Therapy celebrate 25 years in business. Owner, David Hughes, is the cousin of my wife, Barb Hughes, and he’s hired me to perform music from 11am-2pm this coming Friday in his office in Kennewick, WA.
Over the past few months I’ve been involved in some really fun musical moments. I regularly play at Artichoke Music in SE Portland, on Thursday evenings. One week it’s Songwriters Roundup, where all kinds of songwriters offer up one original song and have a very attentive audience. Every other week it’s Acoustic Village. This is usually a themed night of music. Recently, we’ve done tributes to Elvis Presley, Pete Seeger and John Denver. We did an evening of, “Songs of Hope, Protest and Change.” Great stuff. Plus, the audience at Artichoke loves to join in making the evenings extra special as a performer and audience member.
Along with my regular responsibilities with my church’s contemporary worship band, I’ve been part of an acoustic band playing for a chapel service at Westminster Presbyterian Church on Sunday evenings. Some new friends and musical allies makes for wonderful music and fellowship.
In the wings, a possible on-going gig at a popular sandwich shop and a return to Whole Foods in NE Portland with my H-Duo partner, Jeff Haagenson.
I have always been a fan of instrumental piano driven music. George Winston and Keith Jarrett’s more contemplative compositions come to mind. I’ve recently recorded two instrumental songs. One song, “Goodbye,” I have been performing for more than 30 years and it was used in a video celebrating my church’s 50th anniversary.
The newest song, “Sabbath,” uses a simply chord pattern with strong melody line. Both songs are reflective and emotional.
For over 10 years I have played solo piano for the Clark County Chapter of the National Football Foundation. The Foundation honors high school football student/athletes with a wonderful dinner and recognition. I am honored to continue this tradition this Sunday evening at Hudson’s Bay High School in Vancouver, WA.
At my church’s Good Friday service this year I was asked (literally at the last minute) to provide prelude music before the service began. I was also given one instruction, “make it sound Good Friday like.”
With only seconds to gather my thoughts I began to play. Since that Good Friday service I have had many people, not only from my church but otherwise, tell me how much they enjoyed my little impromptu song.